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littleleemur
02-05-2008, 08:02 AM
What diving is there to do (other than Scapa Flow) in the UK, end-June?

Will be there for a wedding (Harrogate) and so already have a ton of stuff and can't bring any serious gear, or devote a lot of time. Along the same lines, is the diving there worth schelpping all that gear over to begin with?

Finless
02-08-2008, 12:00 AM
UK diving is fantastic. There are thousands(?) of wrecks around the coast. Over 380 known wrecks just off the coast of Sussex (where I live) on our side of the Channel.

I don't do reef or shore diving myself (mainly because the inshore conditions where I live are usually poor) but I love wreck diving and I love UK diving. It wouldn't have such a large following if it wasn't so good. I've been a confirmed UK wreck diver for over 10 years. The standard UK wreck diver set up is a twin set and most charter dives are in the 35 to 40 mtr range (the shallower wrecks tend to be more beaten up and prone to poorer vis) but, of course, they do run some charters to the shallower wrecks.

You do need to be 'of a certain standard' to cope with the possible poor conditions. You need a good dive light (plus backup) and a DSMB (essential due to the tidal conditions). In my personal opinion I think it essential that a UK diver configured for solo diving because it is very easy to lose a buddy on a wreck if the vis is poor.

UK diving can be at the "tougher" end of the diving scale due to the sometimes poor visibility' (one dive the vis was so poor and it was so dark that I found the wreck when I head butted it), sometimes lack of ambient light and cooler sea temperatures but get it on a good day and it is awesome. You need to dive prepared for the worst but in June you should get pretty good conditions and the plankton bloom should have died off.

Have a look on Youtube and search for UK diving.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RvCNsr0F5lc is in my part of the world - the TR Thompson.

Generally speaking the best vis is on the West Coast but I have seen 30 mtrs vis at 40 mtrs with good ambient light (no need for a dive light) in the English Channel when diving a wreck in between the shipping lanes.

I think it would be worth bringing your own gear but it depends really on how many dives you can do and if charter boat wreck dives are your thing.

TBH I don't know of anywhere you could hire dive equipment but if you are serious then let me know and can easily find out for you.

If you mean Harrogate (oop North) then PM me and I can recommend a UK forum to join where you may ask relevant questions. I won't post the link on the forum as I consider it to be impolite to the forum hosts.

Oh, Scapa Flow is just an awesome place to dive. The wrecks are fantastic but beginning to show their age so don't leave it for 50 years if you intend to go. :)

Feel free to ask any Q's.

Rgds
Bryan

littleleemur
02-08-2008, 02:15 AM
UK diving is fantastic. There are thousands(?) of wrecks around the coast. Over 380 known wrecks just off the coast of Sussex (where I live) on our side of the Channel.


Ace, did you read that? We need to organize a Wreck Safari this summer!



The standard UK wreck diver set up is a twin set and most charter dives are in the 35 to 40 mtr range [....] You do need to be 'of a certain standard' [....]essential that a UK diver configured for solo diving


I think I may need an additional class or two for that :(
What would a standard dive profile be like?



I think it would be worth bringing your own gear but it depends really on how many dives you can do and if charter boat wreck dives are your thing.


Yes they are! :D



Oh, Scapa Flow is just an awesome place to dive. The wrecks are fantastic but beginning to show their age so don't leave it for 50 years if you intend to go. :)


Finless,
Thanks for the detailed reply. I realized I asked a rather broad question. I was just getting a little frustrated going thru various dive club pages & cross-referencing them to google maps and basically trying to figure out north-south & what to do. :P

Looks like I should take another course or two and really make it a diving trip. Thanks for your help.

Finless
02-08-2008, 11:17 AM
Ace, did you read that? We need to organize a Wreck Safari this summer! The number of wrecks is listed in my "dive Sussex" book.


I think I may need an additional class or two for that :(
What would a standard dive profile be like?That is a tricky question to answer. Most of the dives I do would involve a bit of accelerated deco. People do turn up and dive the same dives with a single + pony cylinder but due there being nothing to see between the wreck and the surface their bottom time is necessarily limited. Certainly in my part of the world everything is on the sea bed and with a long sloping shoreline (as opposed to drop offs etc) you need a boat.

I don't really have much idea of the situation in the coast easily (relatively) accesible from Harrogate. I would recommend you join a UK based forum as well as this and you will doubtless get information from local divers. I can recommend some UK forums if you are interested.



Finless,
Thanks for the detailed reply. I realized I asked a rather broad question. I was just getting a little frustrated going thru various dive club pages & cross-referencing them to google maps and basically trying to figure out north-south & what to do. :PI would definitely recommend a forum to ask your questions. You will get a lot more diverse information from one source - I will PM you one specific site that I use.


Looks like I should take another course or two and really make it a diving trip. Thanks for your help.There may well be dive sites out of
my area that aren't so deep but I guess, by definition, any wreck of any size is going to be in deeper water?

The West Country in particular has beautiful waters with generally excellent vis and, due to a rocky coastline, quite a few places for shore dives.

Feel free to ask any questions.

Rgds
Bryan

Finless
02-08-2008, 12:35 PM
Below is an example of the diving on offer from one of my local charter boats.

Below are all our planned trips for the season, if you want a mid week date
that's not listed please call or e-mail and we'll put together a trip for
you


Sat 1st March - Nyon (40m) - 9:15am load
Sun 2nd March - Mid Channel Persania (45m) - 9:15am load
Sat 15th March - Caleb Sprague (35-45m) - 9:15am load
Sun 16th March - Mid Channel Seaford Ferry (45m) = 9:15am load
Good Friday 21st March - Heathpool (25m) - 8:15am load
E Sunday 23rd March - Grabwell (25m) - 9:15am load
E Monday 24th March - FD Lambert (30m) - 9:45am load
Sat 29th March - Ashford (35m) - 7:45am load

Sat 5th April - Oceana (25-30m) - 8:45am load
Sun 6th April - 1906 (25-30m) - 9:15am load
Wed 9th April - Holland V Historic Sub with Innes McCartney -1 space - 40pp
Friday 18th April - Dungy area exploration (40m range) - 9:15am load

Friday 2nd May - Dungy area exploration (40m range) - 7:45am load Sun 11th May - 7 Seas (35-40m) - 9:15am load
Friday 16th May - Dungy area exploration (40m range) - 8:15am load
Friday 30th May - Argonaut (38m) - 7am load

Friday 13th June - HMS Gurka - (35m approx) - 6:45am load
Thur 26th and Fri 27th June - 2 day trip Lanfranc/Warilda and France - 135pp for 2 days

Wed 9th - Fri 11th July - 3 day Lanfranc/Warilda and French wreck trip - 180pp for 3 days
Sat 19th July - FROM DOVER - Sailing ship (35m) followed by Loanda (18m) Mon 21st July - FROM DOVER - Large Unknown of Dungeness Point (40m max)

DIVING FRIDAY 25th July to MONDAY 4th August inc FROM NIEUWPOORT (Belgium)

Fri 25th July - UB13 (30m) followed by HMS Achilles
Sat 26th - Tubantia (30-35m) weather permitting
Sun 27th - Tubantia (weather permitting)
Mon 28th - Bouraque followed by SS Triffles (30m)
Tue 29th - Laura followed by Grafton
Wed 30th - Peppinella followed by Sigurds
Thur 31st - Killmore followed by Empire Path
Fri 1st August - John Mahn followed by 'Queen'
Sat 2nd - Tubantia (weather permitting)
Sun 3rd - Garden City (35m)
Mon 4th - Bruno Heinemann (German Z-Class destroyer)

Mon 11th August - FROM DOVER Filleigh (35-55m) if conditions suitable or HMS Hermes (38m)
Tue 12th August - FROM DOVER Unknown Hydrograhic survey mark (45-50m)
Friday 29th August - Dungy area exploration (40m range) - 9:45am load

Mon 8th to Wed 10th Sept - 3 day Lanfranc, Warilda and French mid channel
wreck trip - 180pp for 3 days
Friday 12th Sept - Dungy area exploration (40m range) - 8:45am load
Friday 26th Sept - Afghanistan (50m) - 8:45am load

shinek
04-02-2008, 11:52 PM
You guys are bringing back memories for me from way back. As an expat who hasn't dived (dove?) in the UK in a lot of years, I am encouraged by these comments. Perhaps I should include a little diving expedition next time I get back to the old country.
As a 16 year old, I knew I was hooked after my first dive, in a creek, in borrowed gear, an ill fitting wet suit and about 8 inches of visibility ...... fantastic, I loved every minute of it!
I was originally trained by BSAC in Chichester and we did a lot of dives off the coast of Selsey and Bognor. Sadly, I am talking pre-BCDs, although Fenzys were around (horse collar type with a pony bottle attached, Fenzy was the manufacturer) but you had to be on the cutting edge to have one of those.
Do people still dive the Mixon Hole or the Mulberry Harbours out there? Also, we spent weekends down in the Weymouth, Portland area. Is HMS Hood still diveable in the harbour entrance there? That was a fun dive, but a little hairy when the current started to pick up.
Ah, the memories come flooding back. Enough of the old fart talk, hook up with someone in the UK and get out and dive.

Finless
04-09-2008, 12:23 PM
Do people still dive the Mixon Hole or the Mulberry Harbours out there? Also, we spent weekends down in the Weymouth, Portland area. Is HMS Hood still diveable in the harbour entrance there? That was a fun dive, but a little hairy when the current started to pick up.
Ah, the memories come flooding back. Enough of the old fart talk, hook up with someone in the UK and get out and dive.

The first few Google replies:-

MIXON HOLE

Divernet | UK Features (General) | Summer superdiveslobsters are rare in these parts but can be found at Mixon Hole At the bottom, the seabed is covered in shells. The biomass to produce such a covering is ...
www.divernet.com/cgi-bin/articles.pl?id=4601&sc=1030&ac=d&an=4601:Summer+superdives... - 87k - Cached - Similar pages - Note this

Castaways Sub-Aqua ClubWe dived the Mixon Hole, only just getting there in time for slack. All the books say that the Mixon is one of the best dives in England, ...
www.castawayssac.org.uk/tripreports/brac1198.htm - 8k - Cached - Similar pages - Note this

NAS adopted wreck: The Mixon Hole, Selsey BillAn adopted site does not need to be a 'wreck' and the Mixon Hole off Selsey Bill is a case in point. Some believe this site to be an old Roman quarry. ...
www.nasportsmouth.org.uk/projects/sites/mixon.php - 5k - Cached - Similar pages - Note this

Events CalendarMixon Hole The area around Selsey Bill was dry land 2000 years ago and the site ... The Mixon Hole, as the dive is called, is more like a basin now and is ...
www.e-aquanauts.co.uk/wd/cgi-bin/suite/calendar/calendar.cgi?request=detail&event_id=11832&user_i... - 24k - Cached - Similar pages - Note this


Mulberrys

Diving on the Outer Mulberry: BMLSS InformationOuter Mulberry. Jane Lilley reports from a dive off Sussex. The 1944 invasion of France included the use of floating Mulberry harbour units. ...
www.glaucus.org.uk/mUlberry.htm - 17k - Cached - Similar pages - Note this

UK DivingType : Phoenix unit (Mulberry Harbour component), Built :. Shipyard : ... When to Dive Best time to dive the wreck, relative to high wate ...
www.ukdiving.co.uk/wrecks/wreck.php?id=265 - 24k - Cached - Similar pages - Note this

BSAC Diving Gallery - top of the mulberry harbour unittop of the mulberry harbour unit ... an awesome dive with top at 35m and bottom at 50m - huge holes and covered with anenomes, fan coral, rose coral, ...
gallery.bsacforum.co.uk/showphoto.php?photo=365&limit=recent - 18k - Cached - Similar pages - Note this




HMS Hood

[PDF] Portland Harbour, Wreck of HMS HoodFile Format: PDF/Adobe Acrobat - View as HTML
would be granted to dive on the former HMS HOOD, sunk as a blockship in the South Ship. Channel in 1914, until the condition of the collapsing structure, ...
www.bsac.org/uploads/documents/Resources/Dive_Planning/Access/hood.pdf - Similar pages - Note this

NAS ProjectsInterestingly, considering the recent ban on diving HMS Hood imposed by the Portland Harbour Authority (PHA), the survey also shows that the upper parts of ...
www.nasportsmouth.org.uk/projects/portland_map2004.php - 17k - Cached - Similar pages - Note this

shinek
04-09-2008, 04:29 PM
Finless, thanks for this, it refreshes the pictures in my mind. Not surprised diving on the Hood was stopped, it was a tough enough dive 20+ years ago, I can only imagine what time and tide have done to her since. Interesting to see the side scan sonar pictures in one of the articles though. Very cool.
As for the Mixon Hole and Mulberry Harbours, glad to hear they're still going strong. I recall getting geared up in the rain on a cold Sunday morning in the car park and then launching the rib from the beach at Selsey, so the description given in one of those articles was particularly entertaining for me.
Hopefully I'll get back there to dive them again at some stage.
Thanks again.

Finless
04-09-2008, 11:47 PM
Finless, thanks for this, it refreshes the pictures in my mind. Not surprised diving on the Hood was stopped, it was a tough enough dive 20+ years ago, I can only imagine what time and tide have done to her since. Interesting to see the side scan sonar pictures in one of the articles though. Very cool.
As for the Mixon Hole and Mulberry Harbours, glad to hear they're still going strong. I recall getting geared up in the rain on a cold Sunday morning in the car park and then launching the rib from the beach at Selsey, so the description given in one of those articles was particularly entertaining for me.
Hopefully I'll get back there to dive them again at some stage.
Thanks again.


No probs. Glad you got some happy memories of the good old 'recession bound', chav and hoody infested UK. :)

Cath Darton
03-13-2009, 04:23 PM
Hi - what a good question and some good answers all of which I will support. the Mulberry's is probably my favourite dive, especially as it is near to me - and the James Egan Layne is always good - just to mention 2 of the best out of many more.

To those looking at this thread might be interested in a website I have put together tell you about all the dive charter boats (I think!) running in the UK. The site will tell you min booking number, season the boat runs, whether boat has lift etc. www.divesearch.co.uk

If you need accom there are now plenty of listings for the south coast and southwest coast boats - no excuses not to plan some trips now - summer's coming...

Cath