top of page

Cruise Planning Sheet

Blackwater Estuary

Blackwater Estuary
Departure Date

9 September 2023

Return Date

10 September 2023

Lead Boat

Spring Moon

Jeremy Cross

Sheerness HW

0821 BST

Arrive HW


VHF CH 16 + CH 6 for Cruise: 

Medway VTS (74) 

Bradwell Marina (37/80), 

Tollesbury Marina & Heybridge Lock (80), 

Brightlingsea (68), 

West Mersea YC launch (37)

Destination WPT
Useful Links

Passage Notes

NOTES: The passage to Brightlingsea, West Mersea, Bradwell or Tollesbury is essentially the same. The passage should be timed to reach the Swin Spitway near LW with the north going (falling) tide from the Medway then take the rising tide to the destination. Slower craft might wish to anchor 

overnight at Stangate Creek or pick up a buoy at Queenborough (where charges may apply). 

● Take the falling tide from the Medway to the Blacktail Spit Buoy. 

● Shape a course along the edge of the Maplin Sands to the end of the Crouch

● Shape a course towards the Swin Spitway Buoy. Check your draft will allow you to traverse the shallow spitway as there is 1.5 meters currently charted here at chart datum. 

● Head straight to Wallet Buoy 1NM. From Wallet Buoy shape a course approx NW through the deeper water (avoiding shallows to N and S) towards the Colne Bar Buoy

● For Brightlingsea follow the buoyed channel in a NNW direction. 

● For West Mersea or Tollesbury shape a course from the Clone Bar Buoy to the Nass Beacon, then take the buoyed channel for West Mersea. The entrance to Woodrolfe Creek leading to Tollesbury is via a buoyed channel about 0.5NM SW of the Nass Beacon. 

● Sheerness to Brightlingsea 28 NM, West Mersea/Tollesbury/Bradwell approx. 33 NM. Heybridge 41 NM. 

Bradwell Creek is accessed by a channel marked with withies and buoys. When entering the creek, just west of the redundant training wall for Bradwell Power Station, leave the North Cardinal Beacon to starboard. 

Heybridge Basin can only be entered at HW. Check with the lock keeper Paul Hindley 07712 079764 

● For the return, take the last of the ebb tide to the Swin Spitway and the rising tide back to the Medway

Additional Information
bottom of page