Minutes of the AGM 2023

Minutes of the 2023 AGM held at La Villette Hotel on Tuesday 14th November at 2000hrs

The President Nick Guillemette opened the meeting at 2000hrs and welcomed David Barker the Harbour Master and Kieran Higgs Deputy Harbour Master, Colin Le Ray MD of Gsy Ports.

  1. 24 members had sent their apologies for absence and 90 members were present also members of the media and a number of States Deputies.
  2. The minutes of the previous AGM were read by the Secretary Jeremy Witham (JW) and were accepted as a true copy. Proposed by B Lowe and seconded by D Corson.
  3. Matters arising from the last AGM:
    Boating Boot Sale at Beaucette Marina site had been very poorly supported, with only 3 tables and 5 committee members. Money raised for charity went solely to St Peter Port RNLI Fund at £138. The President announced that our 2024 Boating Boot Sale will take place on 19th.may from 1000-1300hrs on the Crown Pier in conjunction with the Marine Raders Annual Guernsey Boat Show. Their President, David Norman, has offered us free use of part of the Crown Pier for this. More details later in the 2024.
  4. Committee Reports: The President gave his report as attached and thanked Members for their continued support; the Secretary (JW) gave his report as attached; the Treasurer’s report was circulated and then the Treasure Tim Lowe went through the main points of the accounts sheets pointing out that the GBA had closed one HSBC account and deposited the money at a better rate as indicated by the difference of interest from HSBC to that at Skipton of £1249.00
  5. G Thoume gave the Trust Fund Report about the state of its funds as no calls on it had been made; he then explained that due to the very low interest rate from the banks the Trust Fund had placed 50% of the fund into deposit with Skipton at a better rate. The question of whether the Trust Fund was still fit for purpose had been discussed and the answer was yes and the members of the GBA present decided that it should still continue. D Coleman wished to stand down as a Trust Fund member from the general membership. A new member of the Trust Fund from the floor was proposed and approved.
  6. Election of Officers and Committee: Nick Guillemette continue in post proposed by JW seconded by A Lajoie, all in favour, J Witham(JW) was proposed by NG  and seconded by AL all in favour, the rest of the committee  was elected en bloc proposed by B Lowe and seconded by AL. Mike Sullivan was proposed by T Lowe for St Sampson and seconded by JW as A Richmond had resigned ,all in favour.
  7. There are however some vacancies on the committee from the bays.
  8. The account examiners were willing to continue and GT and M Woodhard were re elected.
  9. Capt. David Barker the Harbour Master addressed the members and began with reading an Order in Council from 1951 by the then King George 6th about the Licensing of Vessels from Sark and Alderney and discussing the Input and support from The Guernsey Boatowners Association, The Sark and Alderney Authorities for this Bill in Council. The damage caused by a visiting coaster to Roustel Beacon was expensive and difficult to repair exercise, being paid by the insurers of the vessel that hit it and still waiting to be repaired. A number of derelict and abandoned boats were identified in the marinas and taken out of the water and destroyed. KH will continue to monitor this area due to the increasing demand for local moorings.
  • Both DB and KH endorsed the need to be adequately prepared when going to sea which prevents unnecessary calls for assistance.
  • The waiting list for moorings has an initial charge of £60.00 to put a name on it. This charge is designed to ensure that only definitely interested boat owners are on the list.  There are currently over 200 people on it. Matching the size of vessels to the correct sized moorings might mean people being moved to different moorings in some cases. Also one can sell a boat and relinquish the mooring to the buyer if it fits the mooring, but please talk to the Harbour office about your plans to go up in size of vessel or go down in size. Be patient as many moorings changed in the last 12 months.
  • The lifting gates at the QEII are getting old and need to be replaced along with new pontoons on D & E in the QEII Marina.
  • A question about the silting up of St Sampson’s was asked and DB replied that when work to remove silt in St Peter Port Harbour is carried out, St.Sampsons dredging will be included.
  • The mooring fees are going up in the spring and DB explained the increases and explained about the need to be self funding and affordability. The need to spend £25 million in the next 10years for the marinas, QEII lifting gates, the Fish Quay pontoons which are being constructed, and that the proposed Pool Marina plans have not been shelved. There have been 8 ATONS put in place. He answered questions about funding with C Le Ray answering, as well from members on the floor of the meeting. It is States Members who will decide on the Mooring fees not Harbour Staff. NG explained the back ground to building the various marinas, the North Beach car park and Salerie Car Park being an off shoot of the QEII Marina construction to provide extra parking for Town and for extra defences from the sea so that development of Glategny Esplanade could be done for the finance industry. There were various comments and Questions from the floor. A Heyworth questioned the pricing for Monohulls versus Catamarans in the review of mooring fees. NG raised the question of going to the Competition and Regulatory Authority about the proposed large increases in mooring fees by SSTB  as they could be infringing the law and be deemed to be an abuse of a dominant market position. There is no where else to moor 1350+ leisure craft in a secure environment and we are a captive market.
  • Deputy G St Pier explained about the procedures in the States of Deliberation for Policies to be laid or rescinded, C. Le Ray talked about Consultations over other Marinas adjacent to the Channel Islands and their charges and facilities. TL asked about which areas in the Ports Harbours are not showing a profit? D Coleman spoke about the differences between the Harbours and Airport operating costs which raised a lot of applause from members. There was a large majority of members who were in favour of a legal challenge to the high charges proposed. A member spoke about bringing in paid parking on the Salerie and QEII Car parks and asked who the income from that would go to. Capt. Barker explained that the harbours are responsible for the upkeep of these parking areas but Harbours does not receive any income form them. David Norman spoke about the operational costs for the QEII marina and that any income was being used to support the losses at the Airport. A question was asked from the floor about what it would cost the States if every one did not pay their new mooring fees and had to be taken to court to recover the debts and the very bad publicity in National and International ‘Press. KH Deputy H/Master spoke about the away days scheme with other Marinas operated in France and the UK.

10. Dep. S. Vermulen spoke about the amount of research done by NG and D Norman on boat owners’ behalf. The President concluded that he would now be contacting the Competition & Regulatory Authority to appeal following the unanimous vote by those GBA members present at the AGM to proceed.

  1. AOB:  This was abandoned due to the amount of previous discussions and the late finish of the meeting.

The President thanked the Harbour Master and his staff present for addressing the members and closed the meeting at 22.30 hrs approximately.

Jeremy Witham

GBA Secretary