Jamestown - Docking

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Notice: St Helena government have closed the Jamestown mooring field since January 2024 until further notice, due to ongoing maintenance and health and safety issues. Anchoring is now the only option. See this news item for details.

Port Control operates on VHF Channel 14. In the case of difficulty at night, call St Helena Radio on VHF Channel 16.

While the mooring field is closed, Port Control recommend the following anchoring positions:

Suggested Anchoring Positions:

  • 15 55 400 South and 005 43 500 West (North of the existing mooring field)
  • 15 55 600 South and 005 43 600 West (West of the mooring field)
  • Also as an alternative: 15 55 100 South and 005 43 130 West (to the East of James Bay)

See below a snippet of chart 1771 which clearly shows these suggested positions.

Do not anchor too far east as there is a telephone cable on the seabed – notice and indications to this effect are painted on the rock overlooking the anchorage.

Yachts are advised that, due to the depth of the harbor, it is recommended that the amount of chain or cable required for safe anchoring should be at least 3 times the depth of water. Holding in this bay is very poor so be sure your anchor is well set before going ashore and check the position of your vessel on a regular basis. Many a vessel has had to be collected on the horizon after it had dragged anchor.

a yellow and white fishing boat tied to a mooring in the bay with a number of smaller boats around and a brown island beyond with very steep-sided mountains and a town nestled in the valley

 

The entire local harbor has a depth of less than 16m and is occupied by the local fishing and lighter fleet. All are moored with floating lines that interconnect the boats and various buoys. Any vessel that draws more than several cms or that cannot safely pass over floating lines needs to stay well outside the area.

Getting Ashore:

Dinghies can be used but swell conditions on the wharf can be challenging and visitors are advised to make use of the regular ferry service. Call “ferry service” on VHF Channel 16 or pickup.  The ferry service runs on the hour, every hour from 0400 until 1800.  Last drop-off at boats is 1830.  However it is possible to arranger a later drop off if you want to have dinner or go to an event in town, but this costs extra. Have plenty of fenders ready on the side towards the quay. The ferry runs every hour and costs £2/person each way. The fee is payable to the coxswain.

While the ferry does run to an approximate schedule, the weather and swell can often cause the service to be suspended. Be sure to ask about the last ferry back on your trip in.

The Harbor Master is very helpful and a mine of local information. He is the best person to ask for local advice on repairs.

Shore Facilities for Yachts:

Next to the blue yacht club building, on the quayside, are solar showers (a small fee is payable to the yacht club for the use of these facilities), toilets and a double sink for laundry (please check with the yacht club for opening times). There are also toilets and showers at the top of the landing steps and are free to use (no running hot water though).

If you must take your rubbish ashore, please do so in sturdy bags (double bagged) and dispose of it inside the bins near the ferry landing. Permission must be granted by the Port authority in the first instance, this is to ensure that Bio Security protocol is adhered to, no plant material, honey products or chicken products are too brought shore side.

There is a free water tap by the steps at the landing point.

Shower facilities and WiFi are also available at the Consulate Hotel – Tel: 22962.

Stores can be purchased from Thorpe’s Wholesale, Solomons supermarket, Rose and Crown stores, Queen Mary stores plus other local shops all within Jamestown, who may offer discounts for bulk buying and delivery to the end of the wharf.

Port Control are able to facilitate the lifting of yachts for maintenance/repairs, please contact the harbour master or logistics coordinator Gene Henry. See Boatyards for more information.

See Essential Information For Visiting Yachts

Last updated:  July 2024

 

Moorings [currently closed therefore information not relevant at this time]:  

Port Control operates on VHF Ch 14. They are responsible for the allocation of mooring buoys. Moorings are allocated on a first-come-first-served basis and cannot be pre-booked.

 

There are 23 moorings currently in place and they are situated on the western side of James’ Bay (15° 55′.400S, 05° 43′.5W) and are designed to accommodate yachts of up to 60ft LOA. There are two types of moorings:

  • YELLOW BUOYS (18) – for vessels up to 20 tons and up to 50ft LOA;
  • RED BUOYS (5) – for vessels of up to 50 tons and up to 60ft LOA (read full spec. here).
  • Larger yachts may also be accommodated by the arrangement of the Harbor Master.

The buoys are flat and round (like a large Swiss cheese) and are of a foamed material that will not scratch or mark your yacht. All have a pick-up line, however these can often be missing as sadly some departing yachts would rather cut away the pick-up line, than untie their ropes! The Harbor Master has to regularly replace these lines, which is costly and also poses a real health and safety issue for arriving yachts (especially if there are limited crew on board). Please act responsibly and leave the pick-up line intact when you depart for those using the buoy after you.

If you arrive and find there is no pick-up line, cruisers report that the best way to pick up the buoy is to go stern-to and pass a line through the fixed eye of the buoy and then work it to the bow. This also works well in the heavy swells.

You cannot lift the buoys on board.

Notes:

  • In the case of difficulty at night, call St Helena Radio on VHF channel 16.
  • There is no time limit for staying on the buoys. See Fees for a breakdown of costs.
  • You can find the allocation and use policy for the new moorings and other advice at St Helena Information for Yachts
  • As previously described, the swell here can be very substantial, therefore great care must be taken to ensure your mooring lines are secure. Regular checks are recommended as boats have reported coming loose here.

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Jamestown was last updated 2 weeks ago.

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  1. April 23, 2024 at 11:06 AM
    profile photo
    Sue Richards says:

    Notice: St Helena government have closed the Jamestown mooring field since January 2024 until further notice, due to ongoing maintenance and health and safety issues. Anchoring is now the only option. See this news item for details – https://www.noonsite.com/news/st-helena-closure-of-moorings/

  2. January 29, 2014 at 1:29 AM
    Data Entry2 says:

    You can order fuel in advance of your arrival and get any other questions answered by e-mail to [email protected]

    1. November 19, 2022 at 5:10 PM
      sv-lilith says:

      Your message wasn’t delivered to [email protected] because the domain marinemaven.com couldn’t be found.

    2. November 21, 2022 at 2:26 PM
      profile photo
      Sue Richards says:

      Thanks for letting us know – very helpful! We are in touch with St. Helena now to find out new contact details or if indeed this business is still operating. Will update as soon as we know more.

    3. November 22, 2022 at 3:35 PM
      profile photo
      Sue Richards says:

      Indeed this business is operating no more, so thank you for picking up on this. In fact, Steve Kirk, Harbor Master, has done a great job going through the Jamestown information for us and advising of further updates.