The marina has been family run since it first opened in 1972, and over the years has been improved and developed, including new workshops and chandlery, but has never lost its friendly atmosphere.
Awarded for the ‘one stop boating experience’ they provide, the marina also offers an industrial sized boat hoist and boat repair facility, chandlery, refuelling, marina bar and restaurant.
As a Transeurope marina they offer significant berthing discounts when visiting member marinas in England, the Netherlands, Ireland, France, Spain and the Canary Islands.
A Five Gold Anchor marina for more than 20 years it is surrounded by a unique landscape of gardens and trees. They pride themselves on being a secure, independent and friendly marina, catering for the more discerning yachtsmen on the River Medway.
In the chandlery they stock an extensive range of anchors, chains, deck fittings, engine spares, water pumps and hardware, together with an array of below deck items including books, charts, cookers, heaters, cool boxes and electrical and plumbing accessories.
A large selection of boats and outboards are also available in the chandlery. If they cannot be found on the website call 01634 283008 to speak to a member of staff who can ship items via mail order.
The marina’s on-site brokerage company, Clarke & Carter, is also based in the chandlery.
Catering for both leisure and commercial craft, Gillingham Marina has a workshop where they operate a yacht repair and refit facility and have developed a reputation for quality workmanship and high standards of customer service.
All work is carried out in-house by skilled craftsmen, including trained shipwrights, painters and engineers.
In 2000 the repair operation moved into new buildings, comprising 18,000 square feet of purpose built heated workshops, including two climate-controlled paint spraying booths. They can now accommodate vessels of up to 85ft and 65 tons undercover.
Additional services include three shower blocks, laundry room, free Wi-Fi, water and electricity to all berths, 24 hour security, fully licensed bar and restaurant, children’s playground and a leisure centre offering discounts to visitors and annual berth holders.
The marina can hold up to 480 berths in both the locked and tidal basins, max length 20m and max depth 2.2m. These berths include pontoon, finger berthing and a high security area for safe and secure berthing.
There are two boats hoists of 65T & 20T capacity.
Fuel is available from the floating pontoon just outside the lock and gas can be obtained from the marina office. Electricity is available and free of charge for daytime attended use and water is also available to all berths.
The marina is situated five miles from the M2 with central London being about one hour drive away and is adjacent to the Medway Towns Northern link road, which provides easy access to the marina.
Gillingham Railway Station is five minutes’ drive away offering connection to high speed trains to London, the Kent coast and Eurostar services to the continent.
Access to berths for the locked basin is approximately 4.5 hours either side of high water. Call CH 80 “Gillingham Marina Lock” on approach (No28 buoy) and their duty lock keeper will assist. The tidal basin offers access 2.5 hours either side.
The channel to Gillingham is well buoyed and it is best to stick to the channel; the Medway does have a series of marsh islands and mudflats which are obviously best to avoid. The lower part of the Medway has commercial traffic so attention should be paid to shipping movements.
For the yachtsman, the Medway Estuary offers excellent cruising in the lower reaches, with many secluded anchorages, perfect for lunch stops. The river is navigable by quite large vessels for around 13 miles from its mouth at Sheerness to Rochester.
For boats with shallow draught the possibilities are even greater; further up past Allington Lock, the river winds through delightful countryside to Maidstone and Tonbridge.
From the Medway itself, there is the wider cruising area of the East Coast and its rivers, while Holland is 130 miles away. St Katherine’s Dock in London is another favourite destination for a weekend cruise or base to explore London and the upper Thames towards Teddington.
There is certainly no shortage of places to eat and drink locally, whether it is fine dining, pub grub or something a bit more exotic that takes your fancy. The Quarterdeck Bar at the marina, Topes Restaurant Rochester and Meridian Spice Rainham are all good eating venues. There are various bars/pubs and restaurants in Rochester, a short taxi ride from the marina.
A small Tesco is within a two minute walk of the marina for the essentials with a large Asda with self-service petrol station a few minutes walk away.
The bus stop immediately outside the marina takes you to Chatham bus station, and the office will call a taxi for visiting yachtsman.
THINGS TO DO
Chatham Historic Dockyard is a must see with all its maritime history and celebrates its 400 year anniversary in 2018. The Ropery, Historic Ships and maritime museum and much more are situated on the site of the former royal/naval dockyard. (http://thedockyard.co.uk/)
Enjoy Historic Rochester with its Norman castle and the breathtaking views from the top of one of the tallest keeps in the country. A short walk from the castle is the stunning Rochester Cathedral, founded in 604 (the second oldest in England). A place treasured by Charles Dickens, who lived in the area as a child and returned as a successful author.
The Saxon Shore Way path, which is part of the 160 miles between Gravesend to Hastings, passes through Gillingham. The stunning estuary views along the riverside path from lower Gillingham are great to walk. (https://www.medway.gov.uk/pdf/walking_the_saxon_shore_way_through_medway.pdf)
Richard Shorter, C Venture Princess 360, visitor from Benfleet Motorboat & Yacht Club
“It is a very nice marina, quiet and peaceful. The entrance is protected by a boom and is easy even at maximum flood/ebb. Facilities are good and the staff are very friendly. Big chandlery, also a large, working boatyard.”
Andy Stephens, Swanti, tidal berth holder from Ashford
“This is our second year and we could not be happier with it. Excellent, well maintained facilities, together with a friendly, knowledgeable and dedicated staff team.”
Rose Smith, Kingfisher, tidal berth holder, Grays Essex
“Lovely friendly people, fantastic bar and restaurant, made to feel very welcome, the carvery was excellent as usual, keep up the good work.”
173 Pier Road
Kent ME7 1UB
Tel: (01634) 280022
Workshop: (01634) 281333
Chandlery: (01634) 283008