Blue Seas Protection boat berthed at Ryde Harbour, October 2017.

The battle over the Blue Seas Protection boat anchored off Ryde continues, as the Isle of Wight Council confirms it is seeking legal advice.

As reported earlier this month, the organisation claims it has been denied a berth at Ryde Harbour because the space is needed for visitors.

Today (Thursday), the local authority has confirmed it has been liaising with both the Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) and the Queen’s Harbour Master Portsmouth.

It claims ‘repeated’ requests for the vessel to be moved have been ‘ignored’ by its owner. 

An Isle of Wight Council spokesperson said:

“Officers contacted Blue Seas Protection last week outlining their concerns over the security of the vessel and the potential for it to become a hazard to navigation.

“The council would like to reiterate the group did not seek permission to use the harbour as a permanent berth for the vessel prior to its purchase.

“There are a number of other harbours on the Isle of Wight that may be able to meet their needs.”

Berthing of the 19-metre boat in the area proposed would reduce the number of available visitor berths at Ryde Harbour during the peak summer season and would impinge on the movement of adjacent vessels.”

The council says a winter berth has been offered to Blue Seas Protection. But this would not be available until 1 November 2019 and would need to be vacated by 31 March 2020.

A council spokesperson added:

“The group already has one boat in the harbour which is not being kept in accordance with the terms and conditions of the harbour, in that it has not demonstrated the craft is insured.”

Isle of Wight Radio has contacted the Blue Seas Protection for a comment.

*Updated

*Blue Seas Protection claims its boat is ‘legally at anchor, displaying its anchor lights as per Maritime Law’.

A spokesperon said:

“We are not ignoring the council we are merely contemplating how to address their correspondence.”