Catch up after a few days

It has been business as usual on the Waterfront. The traffic in yachts coming and going is picking up as the weather gets better. We have the usual Thames barges and the Orwell Lady making trips up and down. Here is Thistle coming back in after a day sailing around the Orwell/Stour estuaries.


Suntis has arrived so we expect it to come through the lock on the next high tide.


The only item of interest there is whether they will bring in two cranes and get it back out in one day or do the usual two day process. If anything interesting happens, I will let you know.

I have shown you a lot of sunsets over the few years of the blog but we had a fairly special one last week.


This could almost be the smoke from a fire in or behind the new flats on Stoke Quay but it is only a cloud. I like that shot a lot.

There has been a lot of work taking place around the lock control tower recently. More cranes and diggers.


I am not sure what they are doing or how far they have got with the new flood defences though. They have taken to parking Our Josie Grace – the fishing boat – next to the lock gates. Just as I was writing this, she went off down the Wet Dock – presumably to get some fuel.


My son-in-law, Russell, is an active scout leader and is building up his qualifications for sailing and canoeing. This weekend, he had a training session on one of the scout owned boats that moor opposite us. His two days on “Ocean Scout” had him tripping around the Stour estuary. Here he is arriving back yesterday.


Russell is on the extreme right of the photo. Whilst he was coming through the lock there was a family down below us who were feeding the seagulls. You can always tell when you see them in bulk.


Just to finish off, something very strange happened in Patteson Road. My grandson arrived (he was here to await his dad coming off Ocean Scout) and said that someone had thrown a TV out of a window. Now, hearing something like this is bound to make anyone a bit skeptical so I leaned over the end of the balcony and, using my flexible display screen on the camera, took a picture round the corner.


Yup – that really is a TV smashed after dropping from a height. It would be untraceable as to who did it and it was lucky that there was no one there!

The dredging starts

It was a lovely morning this morning – except for the very high winds. At one point, I had difficulty walking back from the quay edge to the apartment block door, the wind was so strong. You should check out this page in the Ipswich Star describing the Stack operation due to the closure of Felixstowe port yesterday due to these high winds.

Well as you can from the first shot, it was a really bright day.


The dredger UKD Sealion was out and about dredging the port.


Although, Norma was still berthed up on Gasworks Quay along with Alert


As the day went on the weather really deteriorated until, finally, around 3pm I took this shot from my hobby room window. (There was no way that I was going out on the balcony – smile).


As you can see, it’s no weather to be out and about. I will stick to making some hills on my model railway!

A busy couple of days

Back to the old days – it is certainly getting more lively. Firstly, not only is Norma in the Wet Dock. She has now been joined by two more.

One is the UKD Sealion. So, we have a second dredger in the Wet Dock. They do have to dredge out the Orwell regularly so I assume that this is the start of the dredging season.



Next, we had a visit from Alert, the Trinity House rapid intervention vessel.




On a less formal basis, Thistle came back in. We haven’t seen much of Thistle this year so it was good to see her back in operation.




Lastly, the tug Fenland came back in on the same lock release as Thistle.



Two things to remember for a better experience using the blog:

  • Double clicking on any photo will show you a much bigger version and
  • I try and put links onto any thing of interest to save me filling the blog up with detail. Please click on any link to see more (as in the links above for Thistle and Alert).

Changes coming for Orwell Quay

We have just had a letter from Persimmon. These are the people that built the complex of flats here on Orwell Quay. They tell us the following:

“The quay wall works have been approved by Ipswich Borough Council and the works entail the provision of a new sheet piled wall extending from mid-way of Patteson Road to a point 45 metres along the quay heading towards the Aurora Restaurant. We propose to commence setup on 1st June with piling to start approximately a week later around 10th June and all works are due to be completed by 30th June.”

If you remember, I reported on some test drilling that went on a while ago. Just for the record, here is where they will be working. In some ways it is a pity to lose the old rust iron works along the quay edge.


Changeable Weather

I guess this is what we expect for a holiday weekend in May (For you furriners, we get the first Monday in May as a national – used to be Bank – holiday. I can’t be a Bank holiday now as some banks are opening!

At 4.55 this afternoon the heavens broke and it teemed with rain.


Just the weather for a nice spring day out – Not!

Then, when I looked around at 5.20 – just 25 minutes later – this is what I saw.


I do hope that you weren’t caught out in it!

Nighttime shot – you choose

We had a very dramatic sky yesterday evening at around 8.40pm. I did my usual and took a range of images. I thought that you might like to see the slightly different effects.

Firstly, I took the shot using the standard automatic settings with the camera set to Landscape on the options dial. This resulted in a photo taken with an aperture setting of f5.6 and a shutter speed of 1/30th sec.


As you can see, this resulted in quite a lot of light bleed and a not-very dramatic sky. I then switched the camera to Aperture priority – which meant that the camera would leave the aperture where it was but I could adjust the shutter speed. I moved the shutter setting to 1/80th sec.


This improved things a little but not by much. I certainly wasn’t satisfied that I had the best out of the view. I then adjusted the shutter speed to 1/160th sec. For the uninitiated, moving the shutter speed to a faster setting lets less light into the camera.


Finally, I was happy. I think that this one shows how dramatic the night sky was at that time. What do you think?


The guys on “My Josie Grace” were busy today.


She was sitting outside our apartment block steaming away like a good ‘un. The two regular crew were beavering away mending nets.


A little later, their Dutch lorry turned up and deposited a load of empty crates which all went on board (missed a shot there) so I assume that they will be going out again soon. It must be a very hard life!

This evening, Trinovante departed. I took the opportunity to get a photo with her against the Queen Galadriel.

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I like to try and give an interesting close up as these boats go past. As my wife said the other day, there is a lot of rope involved in sailing!