This week’s podcast is a mini-episode, just ten minutes long, and it’s all about the auction that’s running until 4th March 2018, on Bristol’s Floating Harbour.
Every two years the Harbour Master’s office runs a salvage auction, of boats that, for one reason or another, they need to remove from the Harbour. They might have been abandoned; or they could have been seized as a last resource because their owners didn’t pay their Harbour fees; or in at least one case, the owner didn’t want the boat any more and rather than try to sell it himself, gave it to the Harbour Master. There are kayaks and dinghies, sportsboats, a narrowboat and much more, in all kinds of stats of repair. All the proceeds go into the maintenance of the Harbour, and it’s a chance to buy a boat for what’s likely to be a fraction of the usual cost.
I talked to the auctioneer, Graham Cockle, about what’s in the 2018 auction, and more about why it’s on. If you want to have a look at the boats yourself, even if you (think you) don’t want to buy one, the boats are on public view every Saturday and Sunday in February, from 10-4 on and around the pontoon between the Cottage Pub and the Underfall Yard. And you can also have a look at my rainy photos of some of them, below (mouse over or click on the photo to get to the slideshow – or go directly to the flickr album).
The auction is all run online, and there’s more information about each boat (and other nautical accessories) and the current bids, on the auction page.
Graham Cockle’s auction site is here, as well as his contact details if you have any questions, and if you are tempted to bid, make sure you follow his advice in the podcast! The information about mooring boats in the Harbour is on the Council website.
If you’re thinking about coming down the the auction, why not combine it with a visit to the Underfall Yard? My last podcast was a tour around the Yard, to get you in the mood, and you can listen to it, and look at the photos, here. If nothing else, grab a coffee in their Visitor Centre!
You can download this podcast directly from the Avon Stories Soundcloud, and sign up for all the future podcasts via the Avon Stories RSS and subscribe on iTunes or Soundcloud to make sure you hear all the future stories. You can also follow the project on twitter and instagram, for regular photos of the rivers and other waters in Bristol.