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Ferry Yacht

1st Mark


Jack Cox



New Mersey Crossing Construction

Briefing Number, 3 May 2015  from Tom Gibbons representing the construction teams

We understand that Ian Schouler has been nominated as the sole FFSC contact for dinghies wanting to sail past the trestle.

As we agreed at our last meeting with the club, the dinghies can pass under the trestle at any time with their mast lowered and sufficient safe headroom but you must pass at the lifting section in the south channel and boats must be accompanied by your powered escort craft. 

On this basis Merseylink would require notice, in accordance with the Navigation plan, from the1 week’s warning onward so that we can let the Construction team and our Health and Safety team know small boats will be passing the trestle. 

If for some reason the dinghies want to pass with their masts up and use the lifting section then the full 1 month notice onward will be required but bear in mind, depending on construction activity, this request may be rejected. 

You should note that we would not except them sail through but be under some form of power.

We have now set up a contact number for you to use to give notice.

Finally if any members wish to just sail up to the construction area, as a day sail activity, can we ask that they keep well clear of the trestle construction zone (500m +).

 Regards, Tom Gibbons


Briefing Number, 2 October 2014 from Tom Gibbons representing the construction teams

A brief outline of what is happening in the river during the remaining period for the construction of the trestle and coffer dams.

The trestle will advance from north and south salt marshes to meet at the central coffer dam. The south cofferdam is under construction and the north and central coffer dams will be constructed, including the filling of the coffer dams up to the same level as the trestle bridge.

These works are programmed to take place over the winter months. During this time the opening section will be installed in the trestle but the intension is to leave it in the closed position. This will allow uninterrupted access for construction cranes, allow temporary supply pipes to be laid along the trestle deck and finally provide an electrical supply to the motors of the opening mechanism.

Once the coffer dams are completed the supply pipes will be removed, lighting along the trestle, mooring buoys and the lifting section commissioned.

This is all programmed to be completed by the end of March 2015.

This period of complete closure to river navigation sits happily with the feedback we had from our meetings with the sailing club and the boatyard regarding boat movements but I want to make sure that this is still going to be the case with the boats that have or are due to come up river over the next 4 weeks.

Below is the procedure we have already agreed regarding the complete closure until March.

On the basis that the trestle section will be closed by default a communication procedure has been agreed with the sailing clubs to open the trestle section ‘on demand’. This procedure is outline below.

1 One month or more before vessels using the channel seasonally (boats go down river in the spring and return in the autumn) the anticipated sailing date or boat movement schedule will be emailed to Merseylink.

2 One week before, all size of boat that required access through the trestle, a passage notice and details would be emailed to Merseylink, including likely times required for the opening.

3 Two hours before the allotted time the vessels master would telephone (using an agreed landline number) the confirmation or cancellation and amore exact ETA would be agreed.

4 At this agreed time Merseylink would open the trestle section to allow passage by the vessel.

Thanks in anticipation,
The Mersey Crossing Team

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Briefing Number 1 - Summer 2014

The engineering team have confirmed that the trestle construction will not be across the south channel until 19 Sept therefore it will be clear for your boats to navigate past on the spring tides which are due 9-11 Sept.

The opening section of the trestle is expected to be operational before the next spring tides due on the 9-10 October, however if its not operational we discussed alternative means to get past the trestle. One option would be to use the north channel or delay transit from Liverpool Marina until the next spring tides which are due 7-8 November.

 For the September transit you expected most boats would use this window of opportunity and you would encourage the owners to bring the boats up in September rather than October.

  Given that up to ten will transit, the operation will be carried out over the 2 or 3 days available.  The boats leave Liverpool about 2 hrs before Liverpool’s high tide and will arrive at the south channel around High Water,  Liverpool (1 hr before HW at Widnes)  The construction team should therefore expect and take account of this fact.

 Finally we agreed that the group copied into this email would remain in communication by email so that Merseylink are aware of transit arrangements being made by Mike and Merseylink can keep Mike informed of trestle bridge progress, particularly the opening section.

 For information, I have spoken with the sailing club - Dave Rigby (Vice Commodore FFSC) who may have boats using the south channel during the same period but will contact me shortly with the details.

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