A DREAM some 15 years ago has become a reality as Weymouth Sailing Club is close to berthing the first club boats on its newly-built pontoons.

Back in the early noughties the general committee realised that money was needed to improve its ageing moorings and fundraising was put in place to cover the eventual costs.

The club, on Nothe Parade, rents water from Weymouth Council on the south side of the harbour alongside the lifeboat and has to maintain its own moorings as part of its lease.

Close to the Cove, the existing greenheart wood pile moorings were nearing the end of their lifespan and action was required if club boats were to continue using this area.

Greenheart is a declining species from South America and large tracts of forests are being decimated by over logging. The committee thought it irresponsible to use this endangered wood and instead went for steel piles which allowed the installation of modern walk-ashore maintenance free pontoons.

Negotiations over the pontoons took more than three years as several different agencies and authorities needed to be consulted and agree the proposal.

The plan was to remove the old and rotten piles, sink four new steel piles then attach floating pontoons with access from the existing stone steps off Nothe Parade.

Steve Pitman, the club’s volunteer mooring secretary, has overseen the project from inception to completion.

Pitman said: “The project has been a rewarding experience and the 25-year maintenance-free facility is a great asset for the club and greatly enhances this area of the harbour. Without the hard work of countless club volunteers the project would never have happened.”

The club’s existing pontoons that berth the Squib fleet have also undergone a makeover during the winter months.

The softwood bearers have been replaced with beams made out of recycled plastic, whilst the decking has been replaced with non-slip grating that was formerly used on the lifeboat’s landing stage. Eagle-eyed club members saw this grating being thrown away and upcycled it for further use.

n Weymouth Sailing Club still has some deep water berths available for the coming season. For enquiries please email facilities@wsc.org.uk