29 September 2009

Go Ape ~ Sunday 18th October 2009

Hi all,

This has now been BOOKED and PAID for! I will therefore need money asap. If you are at meeting on 14 October then that will be ok, otherwise I will need you to get payment to me asap.

Cost is £25 per person

Date - Sunday 18th October
Time - 1.30pm (this was the latest time available)
Place - Bedgebury, Kent

Confirmed to me & booked for are:

Simon -plus 3

At time of writing this, there were 3 places still available.

Once I had booked & the confirmation came up, it then informed me that parking cost £7.50 per car!!! So we may want to meet up before & car share into the forest.

If you want to check out what we doing & for directions look at website - www.goape.co.uk/

Bananas are the preferred snack option!

24 September 2009

Meridian Divers Meeting ~ October 2009

Hi y'all,
The next MD meeting is due to take place on 7th October, but through people being away on that day we are looking at holding it on the 14th October! This is just an early 'heads-up' , I will confirm in due course. If you have any comments please add them!

20 September 2009

Red Sea Dive Sites Index

Just for ease of reference I thought it might be useful to add some dive site maps to the blog. Rather than put them all on one post I'll add them to past (and future) posts and jut use this post as a sort of index page ! To locate the others either use the links below or or use the 'Label' :-
Red Sea Dive Sites.
Marsa Alam Dive Sites Click HERE
El Gouna Dive Sites Click HERE
Taba Dive Sites Click HERE
Dahab Dive Sites Click HERE
Hurghada Dive Sites Click HERE

19 September 2009

Meridian Mutts

Tracey and the dog owning divers in Meridian Divers have created a new blog for MD Dogging Operations (did I say that!) , so all the new non-diving doggy stuff will appear on the dog blog!

Click HERE to be whisk(er)ed to houndly heaven on Meridian Mutts!

17 September 2009

Marsa Alam Revisited ~ September 2009

I'll not spend too much space banging-on about Marsa Alam as much has been said before on this blog (follow the 'Subject Finder Links' in the lower right panel), save to say that having just come back from eleven day boat dives (including two at Elphinstone Reef) the water is warm ...come-on-in! 28 to 28 Deg C in fact. So on the basis of a picture painting a thousand words , here are a few chapters!

15 September 2009

Skive Dive Society

Skive Dive Society have dives booked on:

Wednesday 16th September: Alaunia - Out of Eastbourne Ropes off 08:15

Wednesday 28th October: Ariel - Out of Brighton Ropes off 11:00

Anyone else wishing to join us post a comment ASAP.


14 September 2009

The Wreck of the Nyon ~ Sunday 14th September

The MV Nyon has an interesting story This Swiss cargo vessel was grounded in Eyemouth a popular area for diving up in the land of the kilt and Haggis in 1958 The Nyon, a 5058 tonne Swiss Cargo ship, struck Meg Watson’s Rock, 4 miles northwest of St Abbs Head, on her way from Leith to Dakar. The stern half of the ship was salved and towed to Holland where a new bow was fitted

A stranded Nyon in 1958

Move on to 1962 and the now repaired MV Nyon was heading down the channel carrying a cargo of cars and other bits and pieces when she was in a collision with the Indian Jalazad about 10 miles south of Beachy Head and sank.

Collision Damage the Jalazad

Present day and a group of us are heading on TunWells Diver out to dive the Nyon and it is another first for me. The Nyon has long been on my list of must do wreck dives and with slightly choppy seas I was soon to be achieving that long held aim to dive her. Reaching the site it was the the usual well rehearsed job of shotting the wreck and soon we were hitting the water with Jamie and Ian heading down first to tie in. Derek and me were second in and looking down the shot the vis looked like it may be ok and the light seemed to be staying with us.

The wreck sits about 45m of water on low tide and it seemed to take a while to hit the wreck but we were soon on the wreck which sits on her side and we were towards the stern area. I had to watch my depth as my mix didnt allow me past 38.6 m with a 28% set at 1.4.

The vis was was around 3-4 m and although dark you could just about getway without using a torch on the highest part of the stern . I amused myself whilst Derek busied himself with his camera taking photos. Piles of empty coke a cola bottles lay beneath us in broken crates and coils of cable still lay on the tilted decks. The water was very green and an abandoned net was draped over a peice of machinery ready to catch the unwary.

The bottom time whizzed by and Derek had already deployed his SMB and was starting his ascent above me so I decided to join him and start the slow jouney back to the surface.

Another Great dive and yet again I look forward to doing it again when the conditions are better and I can get a better feel for the wreck .Thanks again to the TWSAC Boys Derek Rob Jools Graham Geoff and Ian for the trip out and the interesting long trip back.

If you are ever up in the Eyemouth / St Abbs area you can dive the remains of the Nyons original Bow which sits in about 9m and then shoot down south and dive the rest of the wreck at a far more exciting depth. Quite unique me thinks


10 September 2009

Diving The wreck of The Seven Seas With Tunbridge Wells SAC and Meridian Divers

The best bits from the dive I did with TWSAC on the wreck of the Seven Seas a few weeks ago

09 September 2009

Monkeying About!

Some time ago we discussed the idea of swinging thru the trees with the help of Go Ape in Kent.

They are only open until the end of October and we had initially set asisde the 4th October 2009.

If you are still interested, please add a comment or email me. This is open to friends & family too. Payment does have to be made at time of booking so we need to get moving if we do want to play Tarzan!

You can find more details from http://www.goape.co.uk/

(not sure what's happened with publishing names!)

07 September 2009

T R Thompson Wreck Dive ~ 6th September

The weather gods were smiling Sunday morning when the group from Rother Diving Club and Meridian Divers met up at the Sussex Yacht club at Shoreham to join Chris West's Hard boat Buccaneer. The plan was to motor out to the MD project wreck The T.R.Thompson.

After the appalling weather of the last week we were not expecting miracles but the sea was glassy smooth and the sun was shining and warm.

After an hours motor we reach the site and there was already a rib packed with divers from TWSAC waiting for slack. Buccaneer crew member Roger popped in and tied the shot in for us.
Soon it was our turn to dive but the sky had become overcast so we expected darkness down on the wreck. Exiting Buccaneer is a little unconventional but not a problem so Nicky Steve and myself rolled in and descended into the gloom or should I say pitch black and before long we hit the wreck and after a bit of searching we had soon orientated ourselves and set off to enjoy the dive. We swam over the engines and down to the railings and winches. even though it was pitch black we were really enjoying the dive as when conditions are like this you tend to see the smaller things with more detail. In fact we were enjoying the dive so much we allowed ourselves to go into a little deco time but all too soon we had to think about our ascent and stops on the way up.

Getting back onto Buccaneer is as interesting as the exit and in fact Steve enjoyed it so much he popped back in (unintentionally) and did it again.

We had planned to do a second dive but as the conditions were picking up and becoming lumpy we canned it and headed back to port. On the way back just off Brighton we were greeted by flipper a lone Bottlenose dolphin playing near a net buoy, no doubt looking for a free lunch which was a nice touch to end a great day on.

A big thanks to Chris West Skipper , Roger and Dave the Buccaneer crew. A nice little boat and great crew will definitely take up Chris's offer of some more dives and midweek stuff in the near future.

Thanks to the Rother Diving Club boys and Girls for joining us and can't wait to do it all again with you and Thanks to Graham at OV for passing on the dive to us.


06 September 2009

Diving with Buccaneer

More Buccaneer Diving Boat Charter Opportunies:-

Friday Sept 11th (HWN) Leave 14-00hrs (40m wreck)
Sun Sept 13th (LWN) Leave 09-30hrs
Tues Sept 15th (HWN) Leave 18-30hrs Indiannia (10m)
Sat Sept 19th (HWS) Leave 09-30hrs
Friday Sept 25th (HWN) Leave 13-45hrs > Waterford (30m)
Sat Oct 3rd (HWS) Leave 08-30hrs
Sun Oct 4th (HWS) Leave 09-15hrs
Sat Oct 10th (LWN) Leave 07-45hrs
Sun Oct 11th (LWN) Leave 08-30hrs
Sat Oct 17th (HWS) Leave 08-30hrs
Sun Oct 18th (HWS) Leave 09-00hrs
Sat Oct 24th (HWN) Leave 13-00hrs BST
Sun Oct 25th (HWN) Leave 13-00hrs GMT
Sat Oct 31st (HWN) Leave 07-15hrs

BOOK EARLY please, to avoid disappointment !

Dive prices.....£25 for a single dive trip.......reduced as the fuel prices have dropped. We are now offering two dives on most weekend trips, (£35), with the second dive on a different site to the first dive. If you want to book the boat during 2009 for training dives or a 'Dive School Outing' or specialist / club dives please get in touch and we can tailor a trip to your requirements.

Buccaneer Charters
Tel:- 01273 464225
Mob:- 07802 571056
Web. buccaneer-diving.co.uk
E-mail chris.mainsplice@btclick.com

04 September 2009

English Heritage - Protected Wrecks

Follow THIS link for the English Heritage web site on Protected Wrecks.

03 September 2009

English Heritage Talk

Firstly a big thank you to all those that braved the appalling weather wednesday night and came to the talk given by Alison Hamer from English Heritage on the issues facing the protected wreck sites off our coasts.

25 divers from Eastbourne BSAC, Tunbridge Wells Sub Aqua Club, Rother Diving Club and Meridian Divers listened to Alison's talk on what English Heritage are doing about these protected sites and how divers can access the sites and become involved in projects and even become licensees of some of these sites.

Alison also fielded questions from the floor on a variety of issues. It became very clear during the talk that protecting sites is a mammoth task due to the lack of funding and in reality there is only Alison doing the job of policing.

After Alison had finished the talk there was a chance for the different clubs to network with each other and it soon became very clear that there is a willingness to join forces and work on a particular project with a view to perhaps becoming the Licensees of a particular local site.
It is felt that a working group of volunteers from each group could meet to formalise a project outline and take it forward. There also was a feeling that a greater degree of co-operation between local clubs and groups could be beneficial when running diving and social activities etc , which is the reason Meridian Divers was set up for.

I will be emailing all those that expressed an interest over the next few days and see if we can set up some sort of meeting and have already spoken to Alison about this.

So the evening was a real success in more ways than one and once again thank you to all those that supported the evening and made it worthwhile. Also a special thanks to Alison Hamer for travelling up from Portsmouth to give the talk and no Alison Eastbourne isn't Dover. A big surprise for me was to meet an old friend that I hadn't seen for thirty odd years good to see you Claire and hubby Keenan, yep we have got old.

Finally thanks to Sheila and Ernie for sorting the room and the food.

Photos to follow shortly

Happy Birthday Tad!

Birthday best wishes to the Tadmaster , revered diving videographer sans frontieres! And well done for organising the very well attended English Heritage Martime talk.

01 September 2009

Maritime Heritage Talk - Wednesday 2nd September

Just a reminder to all that tomorrow's English Heritage maritime talk starts at 7.30pm.

Diving the Wreck of The Mount Stewart

Photo of Anchor on the wreck
taken by Rob King

Bank Holidays normally bring pretty crap weather and Sunday was no exception grey and breezy and with a dive booked for Sunday afternoon I thought that it wasn't worth the trip down to Newhaven and a phone call from Jools confirmed my thoughts so I asked if there would be spaces on Mondays dive as the weather was looking a bit better.

Monday dawned grey and breezy again and once more I questioned if it was worth the trip down but as I had already cancelled once I thought it was polite to at least make the effort.

On arriving at Newhaven the sky at cleared, the weather was hot and the breeze was dropping.
Four of us were booked Tunwells Diver and as the boat had been out to the Scallop wreck in the morning and the vis wasn't brilliant it was suggested by Graham that we try a little dived wreck

The Mount Stewart 2 miles off Beachy Head a wreck and I hadn't dived her before. Built 1873 by T. & W. Smith, North Shields, Yard No 64; Launch Date September 1873; Built for Marquis Of Londonderry, Sunderland; Collision 3nm W Royal Sovereign Shoal on 19/12/1890 & sank whilst in tow

Reaching the wreck site we located the wreck and dropped the shot and didn't have to wait long for slack. Sheila and me were first in and surprisingly going down the line there was vis . We hit the wreck at just over 30m and we had at least 4m of vis plus plenty of light, I was so glad that I had made the trip. We tied the shot in and set off to explore the wreck.

Sitting upright on a sandy bottom the wreck was covered in life large lobsters,congers and huge shoals of bib and pollack cruised the remains. As we started to hit sand we turned the dive around and headed back towards the shot and came across the engine room complete with gantry walks and ladders. dropping over the side of the wreck the hull was impressive with large square holes where there were once windows and portholes. The Mount Stewart lies pretty much intact but depth and time dictated our stay on the wreck so we didnt reach the stern area although Rob got there and reported an impressive stern and propeller.

On the way back to Newhaven we stopped at the Beachy Light House for some photos and then a gentle cruise in warm evening sun and a flat sea back to Newhaven. This is now Rob's favourite wreck and if you want to know why you are going to have to ask him yourselves my lips are sealed.

A brilliant dive cant wait to do it again.

A big thanks to Sheila,Graham and Rob from TWSAC