12th May 2020

Statement from Suffolk Yacht Harbour (SYH) managing director Jonathan Dyke:

We welcome the latest statement from the UK Government in which the Prime Minister announced that from Wednesday 13th May, unlimited outdoor activity will be permitted in England. 

Having sought clarity from the relevant marine industry authorities, we can confirm berth holders are now able to visit SYH to carry out maintenance work and security checks on their boats.  

However, it is still not possible to take boats out of the harbour.  Under directions from Harwich Haven Authority and ABP (Associated British Ports), the River Orwell cannot currently be navigated by leisure vessels.  We are monitoring the situation closely and any updates will be communicated as quickly as possible via our website and social media channels.

Throughout the lockdown period, SYH has had skeleton staff onsite checking boats and mooring lines.  The team has also continued to work within the Government’s parameters to prepare the harbour for the return of berth holders. 

More recently, the boatyard services team became operational, and boat movements and launching have now begun. As such, we are in good shape to welcome back berth holders, albeit under very different circumstances.

The safety of SYH staff and visitors is of paramount importance to us.  Therefore, we have changed our working practices and taken the following measures to help protect everyone at SYH.  

  • Signage is in place across the site to help facilitate social distancing
  • Access to harbour buildings is limited
  • Shower facilities remain open, with increased cleaning in place, and we have disabled the keypads to reduce the number of touchpoints on site*
  • Trollies have also been removed for the same reason as above
  • The SYH team is unable to conduct any work on a vessel with an owner present 

*Whilst we have made efforts to remove certain touchpoints, it is not possible to avoid shared surfaces altogether.  We support anyone who wishes to wear gloves and/or a face mask whilst onsite.

With the safety of our staff, onsite businesses and other berth holders in mind, we ask all visitors to please:

  • Adhere to social distancing rules, being especially mindful on the pontoons and gangways
  • Not attempt to stay onboard boats overnight or take boats out of the harbour

Under this first phase of re-opening to the public, there are elements of the harbour that remain closed.

  • We will not be serving fuel or gas
  • The self-launching slipway is closed
  • The SYH and Classic Marine chandleries are closed (although Classic Marine is operating and delivering orders made via phone, website or email)

The above measures will remain under continual review based on government guidance.  If we are able to relax certain restrictions, then we will do so in the safest possible way.

Finally, whilst we look forward to welcoming berth holders back to their boats, the preferred method of contact with SYH staff continues to be via phone and email (see contact details below).  Where possible, we still have staff working from home and they are able to efficiently deal with the majority of enquiries from afar.

Stay alert and stay safe.

Kind regards,


Keep up to date with all the latest news from the SYH site via our Facebook and Instagram pages.

Please contact the SYH team via 01473 659 465 or enquiries@syharbour.co.uk, or via one of the individuals below:

Jonathan Dyke, managing director: jonathan@syharbour.co.uk

Joshua Major, boatyard services director: joshua@syharbour.co.uk

Chris Nunn, berthing manager: chris@syharbour.co.uk

Richard Gadd, chandlery manager: richard@syharbour.co.uk

Aaron Woolf, boat movements manager: aaron@syharbour.co.uk