Boat trips showcasing the mysteries and history of Suffolk’s Lowestoft Harbour

LOWESTOFT HARBOUR TOUR

£18.00 Per Person | £16.00 Children & Seniors

Slow Boat Trip

South Pier | Lowestoft

45 Minutes Approx

All Weather Running*

No Harbour Tours Late February / Early March 2024

Please be aware we will be unable to run this trip as of late February / Early March 2024 for approx 3 weeks due to a Temporary Suspension to Navigation on Lake Lothing to facilitate the installation of the new Gull Wing Bridge. (Notice to Mariners No 64 – ABP Lowestoft)
Excelsior Lake Lothing

Overview

Join us for a relaxed and guided boat tour around Lowestoft Harbour and Lake Lothing in Suffolk, where our friendly and knowledgeable crew will point out all the key sights!

Interested in the old ship building yards, or perhaps even a visit to the famous ship graveyards, including the wrecks of Yellowtail, Platecia and MV Probe. Or maybe you want to see the huge offshore ships and research vessels that are regular visitors to our Port. There’s also lots of yachts and pleasure boats that visit Lowestoft each year. There’s also many tales and stories to be told from over the years, from an infamous boat building criminal to Richard Branson’s Challenger Two that was built right here in Lowestoft!

Our base in the yacht basin is home to an over 150 year old yacht club, which is still racing classic Broads One Design Squibs off our coastline each summer, a sight in itself to witness!

Trip Itinerary

  1. Departure from our berth at the Heritage Quay, South Pier
  2. Pass under the towns Bascule Road Bridge
  3. Leisurely 4 knot journey upstream towards Oulton Broad, passing through the new Gull Wing Bridge
  4. Pass under the over 100 year old Oulton Swing Railway Bridge
  5. Return to our berth at Heritage Quay

Important Things To Know

HISTORY OF THE Ship Wrecks of Lake Lothing (LOWESTOFT)

Yellowtail (LT326) 1501 class beam trawler built in 1945 Frank Curtis Yard, Loe, Cornwall. Yellowtail saw service towards the end of WW2. After the war, she came to Lowestoft and operated as a fishing vessel called “Maravanne”. In 1959 she became Yellowtail under ownership of Clan Steam Fishing Co of Grimsby but operated and registered in Lowestoft. Around 1976 after a change of ownership she was anchored between the Oulton Broad road & rail bridges. Sank in early 1979 and was refloated but sank again a few years later. During construction of the new Oulton Broad Road Bridge in the late 1980s / early 90s she was moved to her current location. A storm in 2013 caused the aft cabin to collapse and lower section below the bridge to sink into the hull which is now fast rotting away.

Class History – Originally commissioned by the Admiralty, 81 Motor Fishing Vessels in the 1501 class were building during WW2. They were small wooden craft, 26m long by 7m wide. They were used as ships tenders and carried their own crew of 11 men, having a standard armament of 1x 20mm anti-aircraft gun. They had a max speed of 9 knots, powered by a 1 shaft 240 BHP diesel engine.

Platessa (LT205) 1501 class beam trawler built in 1946 after WW2 concluded by East Anglian Constructors, Oulton Broad. Initially was a fisheries research vessel (RV Platessa) operated by the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food (MAFF) between 1946 and 1967, surveying the herring and plaice population in the North Sea, participating in more than 473 separate research campaigns. She was sold into private ownership in 1968. In 1975 she developed a leak whilst at sea and was escorted in by Gorleston Lifeboat “Khami”. Shortly after she sunk in the Hamilton Dock and was eventually moved to southern Lake Lothing.

Class History – Originally commissioned by the Admiralty, 81 Motor Fishing Vessels in the 1501 class were building during WW2. They were small wooden craft, 26m long by 7m wide. They were used as ships tenders and carried their own crew of 11 men, having a standard armament of 1x 20mm anti-aircraft gun. They had a max speed of 9 knots, powered by a 1 shaft 240 BHP diseal engine.

MV Probe (MMS-1086) – MMS class motor minesweeper, built in 1942 on the opposite side of Lake Lothing by East Anglian Constructors and saw service in WW2. Sold to the Royal Norwegian Navy in 1944 and renamed Vefsna. After the war the Norwegian Government took ownership and she was converted to a hospital ship. In 1961 she was sailed to Grimsby and converted to a Survey Vessel RV Probe. She returned to Lowestoft in 1962/63 where she searched for North sea oil and gas reserves. Sold for scrap in 1969 and now rests half sunk on the southern shore of Lake Lothing.

Class History – Almost 90 of this type of minesweeper were produced for the Admiralty, nicknamed Mickey Mouse’s. They were 38m long and 8m wide. They were built from wood so as not to be vulnerable to magnetic mines used by the German Navy. Crewed by 20 men, powered by a 1 shaft 1,000 BHP diesel engine with a max speed of 10 knots. They had an standard armament of 2x 20mm guns

Eadwine (YH228) Steam drifter built in 1914 in Great Yarmouth, weighing 96 ton, with a 26 HP engine, she was fitted with a 6 pounder gun and served as an armed net drifter and boom defence vessel from 1915 to 1919, under the pennant FY1892. Between the wars she returned to herring fishing out of Great Yarmouth. In WW2 she was fitted with a 3 pounder gun and used as an auxiliary patrol drifter from 1940 to 1946. She was also one of the vessels to aid in Operation Dynamo, the evacuation of Dunkirk. After the war she again returned to being a herring drifter until 1962 where she was sold for scrap. Her skeletal remains now rest of the northern bank of Lake Lothing.

*All Weather Running means we are able to run this trip in conditions otherwise not suitable for our trips out to sea. However, in certain extreme situations certain weather conditions will prevent us being able to safely run this trip.