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Visitors Marina Guide


Ch 11

Call Sign

'Bridport Harbour'



Berthing Rates

short stay:
£10 (6hrs)

£16.50 flat rate

Book a Berth

YHA Rating

not rated


8 berths

code entry

code entry

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About the Marina

One of the big problems with crossing Lyme Bay is that it offers very little opportunity of shelter should it blow up. West Bay has resolved this problem, but only in part, by building a completely new west pier, and thus creating a small outer harbour with limited pontoon berthing for visitors. This award winning £18m engineering project was completed in 2004 and was opened by the Duke of York who renamed the West Pier - The Jurassic Pier.
West Bay was plagued by the problem in that any S'ly breeze above F4 made entry into the harbour very dangerous. In lesser winds, accessibility of the harbour was around 220 days per annum - the new West Pier has improved accessibility by 50% to 330 days. Realistically, the real limitation for access is the depth of water which is normally 1.70m MLWS, otherwise it is accessible at all states of the tide. New for 2011 are shower and toilet facilities housed in the harbour office building which are accessed by key code.

The harbour was originally called Bridport Harbour since it served the needs of the picturesque town of Bridport, 1.5 miles inland and to the north of the harbour. However in the late 1800s the harbour was re-branded West Bay in order to market itself as a seaside resort. Today, West Bay is surrounded on all sides by huge mobile home holiday parks. There are loads of very good pubs and restaurants which line the quay of the inner harbour, but reservations are essential since they're all very popular with the holiday makers. The walk in either direction along the Jurassic Coast is recommended, keeping a close eye on the ground for fossils.

Marina Approaches

Despite the new West Pier access to the harbour is still dangerous in a strong S'ly blow and with the creation of the new pier, the approach is far less intimidating than the narrow, tall, steep sides entrance that used to be. At night the approach is made on the white sector of the approach light positioned at the root of the new West Pier. As yet, the sand bar that used straddle the entrance to the harbour hasn't appeared - partly because the harbour is regularly dredged.

Channel Is
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