Norfolk Broads Navigation Byelaw 72 Validity & Exemptions.

The request was successful.

Dear Broads Authority,
I am making a request for information regarding Navigation Byelaw 72 as to it being invalid on Broads Authority 24 hour moorings on the Norfolk Broads?
Can you please provide the information as to why Byelaw72 does not apply to BA 24 moorings? I have been unable to find any exception to it in either Byelaw 61 or in any other byelaws. I state this because if Byelaw 72 did not apply to BA 24 hour moorings then there would be a clause in the Byelaws that rendered Byelaw 72 invalid at this mooring, however, I am unable to locate that information which states this and I am therefore requesting that information through the freedom of information act.
FURTHER INFORMATION BELOW FOR YOUR PERUSAL IN PROVIDING THE REQUESTED INFORMATION.
(I refer to being issued with a B.A. ticket or notice of violation (blue-booked) in November of 2015 by one of the Broads Authority's rangers, namely Andy Cullum.
Andy Cullum stated that I was violating Byelaw 61 and that Byelaw 72 did not apply to these moorings.
I was issued with a ticket for overstaying by a couple of days on Commissioners Cut BA 24 hour mooring by the ranger when my vessel P464 was disabled due to severe propeller damage. The propeller had actually been removed by the time of receiving a ticket and was sent off for repairs. Although it was later found to be irreparable and was replaced with a new one.
At this time of my vessel being disabled due to mechanical reasons the sailing capacity of it was also non-existent due to the mainstay being damaged and was therefore also disabled as a means of propulsion.
The vessel was disabled and was not able to be moved by motor propulsion or sails until repairs had been conducted which were pending at the time.
At the time of the issuing of the ticket I did record the meeting with the ranger by video and on three separate occasions quoted Byelaw 72 which was not noted on the ticket and I was told by the ranger that it did not apply to 24 moorings even though these moorings do in fact lie in the navigational areas of the Norfolk Broads).

Yours faithfully,

Miles Weston

David Harris, Broads Authority

Dear Mr Weston,

 

I am writing in relation to your request for information regarding the
below received on 24^th April 2017. 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 am making a request for information regarding Navigation Byelaw 72 as to
it being invalid on Broads Authority 24 hour moorings on the Norfolk
Broads?

 

Can you please provide the information as to why Byelaw72 does not apply
to BA 24 moorings? I have been unable to find any exception to it in
either Byelaw 61 or in any other byelaws. I state this because if Byelaw
72 did not apply to BA 24 hour moorings then there would be a clause in
the Byelaws that rendered Byelaw 72 invalid at this mooring, however, I am
unable to locate that information which states this and I am therefore
requesting that information through the freedom of information act.

 

The Authority’s response

The existence of the Navigation Byelaws is a matter of public record. They
are available on the Authority’s web site and can be found here:

[1]http://www.broads-authority.gov.uk/__dat...

There is no separate document containing any interpretation of the
byelaws.

Your question relating to why the byelaw does not apply to BA 24-hour
moorings, would appear to be based on a misunderstood premise. It is in
any event, not a request for information, but for an opinion.
Nevertheless, those providing information should assist requesters and
whilst the following does not form part of our formal reply, the position
is as follows. Byelaw 72 does apply across the navigation area which
includes BA 24-hour moorings. However, the Byelaw does not mean that
vessel owners in effect have a right to 28 days’ mooring in any specific
location in the navigation area. Where vessels are moored, the master of
the vessel must observe any restrictions placed by the owner of the
moorings, including the length of stay. I have spoken to our Head of
Navigation, who confirms that a common-sense approach is taken to BA
24-hour moorings in the event of a vessel breakdown. If a repair appears
to have been organised by the master of the vessel concerned which will be
undertaken very quickly at the location, or if not, arrangements have been
made for it to be towed, the Ranger will maintain a dialogue and use some
common-sense discretion before issuing a ticket. However in these
circumstances, the timescale would be short.  It would not cover a vessel
owner packaging and sending a piece of machinery to be repaired and
awaiting its return at a 24 hour mooring; in those circumstances the
vessel would need to be towed to another location.

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

Mr D J 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
[2]www.broads-authority.gov.uk

 

 

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References

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Dear David Harris,
Thank you for your reply, however, I am not convinced I have received the information requested in full.
You have stated that Byelaw 72 does, in fact, apply to 24 hour BA moorings is part of the information requested. Thank you for that.
However, you have stipulated that,
'It would not cover a vessel
owner packaging and sending a piece of machinery to be repaired and
awaiting its return at a 24-hour mooring; in those circumstances the
vessel would need to be towed to another location'.
Where is this information stated in the public records of the Byelaws of 1995 as evidently, this would be the case and it would, in fact, be stipulated in the Navigation Byelaws of 1995?
In addition, you have stated.
'If a repair appears
to have been organised by the master of the vessel concerned'.
Once again, can you please release the information regarding this arbitrary statement as it does not appear in the public records of Navigation Byelaws 1995.
So just to reiterate, I am requesting information relating to the above two statements by yourself with regards to where these are sourced by yourself in a legal respect as they do not appear in the public records as described.

Yours sincerely,

Miles Weston

David Harris, Broads Authority

Dear Mr Weston,

This information was given to me by our Navigation Officer as part of making internal enquiries in order to answer your original request, earlier today. There is no written guidance for this and it falls into a category of those exercising a public enforcement function exercising discretion and common-sense where an individual has suffered an unforeseen misfortune.

The alternative of course would be (as an example) a vessel owner with engine failure, who had slightly overstayed a 24 hour limit, being issued with a ticket when they had within that time already made arrangements to be towed away. I can see that such an approach would attract criticism.

I note that we have a separate FOI request from you which I shall endeavour to answer shortly.

Yours sincerely,

David Harris
Solicitor to Broads Authority and Monitoring Officer

Direct Dial: 01603 756018

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Dear David Harris,
Thank you for your reply.
'There is no written guidance for this and it falls into a category of those exercising a public enforcement function exercising discretion and common-sense where an individual has suffered an unforeseen misfortune'.

Thank you for providing that information and would I be correct in stating that this above statement made by yourself, in fact, is arbitrary and therefore does not form any part of the Navigation Byelaws 1995 that exist within the public domain?
Thank you for your attention.

Yours sincerely,

Miles Weston

David Harris, Broads Authority

Dear Mr Weston,

I would rather put it that it is not a formal statement of policy, but I agree with you that it does not represent any departure from the formal wording of the Navigation Byelaws 1995.

Yours sincerely,

David Harris

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