Reedham traders’ fury at mooring charge plan
Plans to introduce a £3 fee for overnight mooring at Reedham Quay would put off holidaymakers and hit pubs and other businesses hard, it is claimed.
Residents and business people in the Broadland village are adamant that the Broads Authority (BA) has no right to levy the charge, claiming counsel's opinion was sought in the past when it was ruled that people had a legal right to moor free on what was a public quay.
Angry business owners have vowed to attend a meeting of Reedham Parish Council tonight to lobby support for their campaign to stop the plan.
Meanwhile, it is understood the BA, which leases the quay from Broadland District Council, has delayed introducing the charge while it explores the legal issues.
Annette Terry, who runs Cupcakes cafe with her husband Robert, said: 'In the current economic climate we need help, not obstructions being put in our way.
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'The majority of holidaymakers start off on the Northern Broads and they have to make a concerted effort to come across Breydon Water on to the River Yare.
'They already pay a lot of money for their boats and fuel and my fear is that some could give Reedham a miss if they have to pay a mooring charge.'
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Businesses would inevitably feel the impact, including the village shop which had only just re-opened, she added.
Julia Connelly, who has just taken over the quayside post office with her husband Paul, said: 'It is not crowded here like Wroxham. We need to attract more tourists.'
Bill Carter, landlord of the Lord Nelson, said: 'People will see they already face a mooring charge at Great Yarmouth and Norwich and this will stop some coming on to the southern Broads.'
He said Reedham would be in danger of losing its pubs and shop like so many other villages.
A Broads Authority spokesman said: 'This was a joint decision between the Broads Authority and its landlord Broadland District Council to make sure this popular spot on a key navigational route is secured for future public use, to meet rising management costs and the continued provision of a ranger, who can help with difficult mooring, in line with other serviced points at Yarmouth and Norwich.
'However it was decided to apply only a nominal fee at Reedham for overnight moorings specifically to ensure the impact on local businesses would be minimal.
'The fee is considerably lower than Yarmouth and Norwich to reflect the range of services at each.
'Neither party will profit from the fee.'