Families hunt for new moorings after being ordered from Fish and Duck Marina

FAMILIES living on the river at the Fish and Duck Marina are frantically searching for new moorings, after being told they must quit their berths early next year as a programme of improvements is carried out.

The marina near Little Thetford will close for around 12 weeks - and there will be no full time residential moorings available when the new look facilities re-open.

A spokesman for the residents - who asked not to be named - said: “It is a travesty, some families are very upset and worried.

“It is a big problem. There are kiddies living on the some of the boats, they may have to be uprooted and go to different schools. Some of the craft do not have engines and some people have no where to go. There are limited moorings available for people who live on boats”

Around 75 boats have been permanently moored, with 45 classed as liveable all year round. Boat owners have been told to leave by January 9.

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Other boaters say they are furious and disgusted, complaining that they have not been given enough time to find alternative moorings.

The marina has been run by James and Davina Harvey for the last year, and the couple are planning a wide scale improvement scheme, creating new moorings, reconfiguring the layout, and making improvements to the access road and river banks .

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Davina said: “We will be inviting all the boats back after the work is carried out. But we will not be reopening as a live aboard marina. Financially that does way of running the marina does not stack up, and we are running a business. We cannot financially continue to support that.”

Davina says residents have been given a long period to find new moorings, and she has given boat owners help with finding a new place to stay.

She added: “James and I had to decide what direction to go in, and this plan is best for the future of the marina, it is not a decision we have taken lightly, but financially we have had to do this.”

Water and electricity will be cut off when the renovation work is underaken. James said: “Unfortunately we cannot do this safely or effectively with a marina full of boats and people, and we therefore have no option but to close it temporarily. Everyone who previously moored at the marina has been invited back when we reopen.”

Longer term, Davina and James hope to create a leisure destination, where customers can stay in basic accommodation, hire small leisure craft and dine in a new restaurant.

The Fish and Duck Marina will close to all mooring and services from 4pm on Wednesday 9th January 2013. Davina and James hope to have the upgraded marina reopened in Spring 2013.

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