Liveaboard Policy & Legality On The Norfolk Broads

miles weston made this Freedom of Information request to Broads Authority

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The request was successful.

Dear Broads Authority,
I would be very grateful if you could inform me on what is the legal standing with liveaboard boats on the Norfolk Broads?
I refer to continual cruisers using wild moorings and also 24-hour moorings maintained by the Broads Authority and local parishes and I do not refer to private moorings, marinas and boatyards.
In addition, with regards to the 24-hour moorings maintained by the Broads Authority, are they available for use by liveaboards for a period of 24 hours exactly like privately moored boats and hire boats?
In addition, as they hold 24-hour restrictions does this mean there are a maximum number of times any BA 24 mooring can be used in any one year by any particular vessel/boat whether it be used for residential purposes, temporary recreational use or hired out?

Yours faithfully,
Miles Weston.

Essie Guds, Broads Authority

Dear Mr Weston,

Thank you for your request for information under the Freedom of Information Act. We have 20 working days to respond to such requests and you should therefore expect a response from the Solicitor & Monitoring Officer by 22 May 2017. If it is not possible to respond by this date, he will contact you explaining why and provide a date by which the response will be made.

Kind Regards,

Esmeralda Guds
Pa to Chief Executive and Chair
Tel: +44 (0)1603 756005

show quoted sections

David Harris, Broads Authority

Dear Mr Weston,

 

I am writing in relation to your request for information regarding the
below received on 21^st April 2016. Your request has been handled under
Section 1(1) of the Freedom of Information Act 2000. In accordance with
section 1 (1)(a) of the Act I hereby confirm that the Authority does hold
information of the type specified.

 

Dear Broads Authority,

I would be very grateful if you could inform me on what is the legal
standing with liveaboard boats on the Norfolk Broads?

I refer to continual cruisers using wild moorings and also 24-hour
moorings maintained by the Broads Authority and local parishes and I do
not refer to private moorings, marinas and boatyards.

In addition, with regards to the 24-hour moorings maintained by the Broads
Authority, are they available for use by liveaboards for a period of 24
hours exactly like privately moored boats and hire boats?

In addition, as they hold 24-hour restrictions does this mean there are a
maximum number of times any BA 24 mooring can be used in any one year by
any particular vessel/boat whether it be used for residential purposes,
temporary recreational use or hired out?

 

Yours faithfully,

Miles Weston.

 

The Authority’s response

The FOI does not confer a right to interrogate a public authority, in
other words to require an authority to answer questions about matters. The
Act is concerned with disclosing information that answers a specific
description. However a public authority must help a requester.

I shall therefore take your questions as asking whether the Authority has
any policy, published or not, which applies to mooring rights of
“liveaboards” as you describe them in your request.  The answer is “no”.
This is not a separate category of vessel owner which is formally
recognised by the BA.

Therefore “liveaboards” are the same as any other lawful user of a vessel
in the navigation area or adjacent waters. BA 24 moorings have a “no
return in 24 hours” rule, which has universal application.  Any vessel can
return to a 24 hour mooring once 24 hours has elapsed since they left it. 
For private moorings, the matter is more complex; vessels which are moored
in a hazardous manner can have action taken by the BA. The riparian
landowner may wish to enforce trespass laws and longer-term mooring
potentially invokes the Town and Country Planning Acts and the interests
of the Crown Estates on tidal rivers. However, all these considerations
apply equally to all vessels.

I should add for completeness that “houseboats” are vessels which are of a
particularly recognised  category, but it is clear your question does not
relate to them.

I note that I recently answered an FOI request from you in relation to
Byelaw 72 and I reaffirm that nothing in this reply affects the position
as stated in that one.

I trust that this information is provided to your satisfaction. You have
the right to appeal against this decision. If you wish to appeal, please
set out your grounds of appeal and send to the address below.

FOIA Appeals

David Harris

Solicitor and Monitoring Officer

Broads Authority

Yare House

62-64 Thorpe Road

Norwich.

Norfolk

NR1 1RY

 

You also have the right of a subsequent appeal to the Information
Commissioner at:

 

Information Commissioner’s Office

Wycliffe House

Water Lane

Wilmslow

Cheshire

SK9 5AF

Telephone 0303 123 1113

 

If you wish to discuss this reply you should please not hesitate to
contact me.

 

Yours sincerely,

 

 

David Harris

Solicitor to Broads Authority and Monitoring Officer

 

Direct Dial: 01603 756018

 

Broads Authority, Yare House, 62-64 Thorpe Road. Norwich NR1 1RY
01603 610734
[1]www.broads-authority.gov.uk

 

 

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References

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Dear David Harris,
I am surprised to learn that you may perceive my request as an interrrogation, however, I do feel it fell under your description here 'disclosing information that answers a specific description'.
In addition, i believe the information request has been satisfied and I thank you for your response.

Yours sincerely,

miles weston