Tuesday 6 June 2023


It turns out that Sir William Hillary, the originator of the lifeboat service, was a Manx resident. Here is a rather weathered statue of him in a park in Douglas. He  is staring thoughtfully out to sea.
We didn't feel the attractions of the TT should keep us in Douglas so John and I decided to move on. When we came to Douglas I hadn't given much thought to the rather complex tides round the Isle of Man. For going up towards the Clyde, it seems its much better to start from Peel on the west side of the island, and for us it worked out better to go round the southern tip of the island before heading north. First though we had to get out of Douglas inner harbour. There wasn't enough space to turn Bonita and so we reversed her rather laboriously out of the inner harbour and under the lifting roadbridge that crosses the harbour entrance. John was fully occupied fending off, and as it was Sunday lunchtime lots of boat owners emerged from their cabins to cheerfully adjust their fenders when they saw us coming.
There wasn't much wind and much of the time the sea was like glass. We motored overnight all the way to The North Channel and ended up in the miniature harbour of Portpatrick. We are now in Scotland!
This minute harbour was apparently originally built as a ferry port serving Northern Ireland, but the ferries left long ago and much of the structure of  the harbour is in very poor condition.  It is now owned by a Community Action Group. We wish them well but there doesnt seem to be much sign of recent improvements.The entrance is very narrow, surrounded on both sides by the remains of the old harbour walls, though the small inner harbour still provides a secure berth but with no frills. 

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