This website is for the sole personal use of skippers of narrowboats
and wide beam steel boats
that are taking part in the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Pageant
on 3 June 2012.

Last updated: 2 August 2012

For questions and comments about the narrowboat element of the
pageant, please contact Andrew Phasey

For comments on the website, please contact Simon Judge

To contact the organisers of the entire pageant,
please email Amy Johnson



Please note: the content of this website is now frozen: the last two changes are Amy’s final newsletter (including another neat PLA video), and the newsletters from Matthew Phillips on 7th July and 2nd August.

Links to photographs of the event are available on the ALBUM PAGE

Thank you to all my readers and contributors
Simon Judge 10th June 2012


Andrew Phasey’s newsletters (for narrowboaters)

British Waterways notices and guidance

Key operational notices

Port of London Authority notices

QDJ newsletters (for all participants)

Narrowboaters websites and blogs

Other information

Press coverage

What’s New



Andrew Phasey’s newsletters (for narrowboaters)

·        Number 1:  25 February


·        Number 2: 28 February (includes photo below)

·        Number 3: 6 March (and flag design)

·        Number 4: 25 March (flags, moorings, weather limits, rehearsals, etc)

·        Number 5: 7 April: numbers allowed on board. (Details of tideway trip on 6 April below)


·        Number 6: 22 April. Seeking confirmation of our plans for

o   rehearsals

o   moorings on the wall at Limehouse

o   dispersal after the fun.

·        Number 7: 29 April.

o   Moorings in Limehouse

o   Rehearsal formations (now at capacity) and timings

o   Dispersal destinations on 4th June

o   Anchors, chain and warp

o   Navigation lights etc

·        Number 8: 6 May:

o   Accreditation at West India on Sunday morning, 3 June

·        NEW Number 9: 20 May:

o   Feedback on first two rehearsal weekends

o   Final plans for dispersal on 4th June

o   Transit plans to WID on 1st June

o   Anchor chains and warps (15m and 35m) respectively: a reminder


BW notices and guidance


·        Stoppages and restrictions on the Grand Union (as announced on 15 March, and REVISED from 11th May) between Braunston and Tring: comment added on experiences travelling south in early April.

·        Excellent BW pages on water shortages, including information on reservoir levels and a really neat map summarising the stoppages in place (NEW as revised on 25 April)

·        Stoppages and restrictions on the Lea and in Limehouse Cut, lasting throughout the pageant period.



·        Tideway handbooks:

§  downstream

§  upstream

§  estuary

·        Tideway locks (Brentford, Limehouse, West India and Bow): opening hours (part 1 and part 2)

·        Guide to London waterways

·        Guide to Docklands and Olympic waterways

Key operational notices for rehearsals and the pageant


·        Rehearsal on 26-27 May:

o   BW guide – upstream, estuary

o   PLA videos (starring Louis on Madam in Cruising through Central London)

·        NEW Pageant briefing on 1st June:

o   Video for all skippers (PLA website,  or Youtube) (another starring role for NB Madam, and indeed for 60% of all the narrowboats, and a nice plug for the SPCC)

·        Pageant on 3rd June:

o   Generic passage plan – bridge arches, draft and air draft;

o   NEW One page summary of passage plan, courtesy of John Gwalter of NB Ernest

o   Pageant instructions, to be supplemented by instructions from our section leader, Andrew Phasey

o   Numbers allowed on each boat

o   Flotilla schematic – we are on page 3 (see large print relevant extract prepared by me)

o   Flotilla timing (extract prepared by me for narrowboats)

o   Scrutineering checklists one and two

o   Flag and decoration protocol

·        Rehearsals on 12-13 May


PLA notices


·        NEW PLA videos – NB the one near the end on the Pageant, one of narrow boat Madam  cruising through central London, and one covering Putney to Teddington (with a focus on rowing)

·        NEW PLA video on rehearsals for the Royal squadron and on the work of the PLA for the QDJ


·        Notices to mariners – general index of those still in force

Selected notices for entire river, middle and upper sections ..


·        Notice 10/2011: Bow Creek

·        Notice 15: barrier closures (including 0930 to 2330 on 3rd June: see also BBC info)


·        Notice 20:  various warnings and restrictions for the Jubilee Pageant (30 May to 5 June) – yes that’s us!

·        Notice 23: LED light trials on the Thames Barrier (“B” span), commencing 14 May

·        NEW Notice 24: VHF radio use during the pageant

·        NEW Notice 25: River Thames Recreational Users Guide 2012. Order a copy here

·        Notice M1: temporary Olympic moorings

·        Notice M5: temporary Jubilee moorings

·        Notice M14: increased rowing between Putney and Victoria

·        NEW Notice M34 on core sampling for the Thames tunnel: 11-27 May

·        Notice M4: Blackfriars 4 arch closures (until end of May) – see M38 below

·        Notice M33: Temporary moorings between London Bridge and London Bridge City pier (25 May to 6 June)

·        NEW Notice M35: Southwark Bridge arch 5 closure on 31 May

·        NEW Notice M38 on Blackfriars Bridge arch closures. NB relevant to disperals: the buoys referred to are the size of a small narrowboat


·        Notice U4: Barn Elm reach moorings

·        Notice U6: Sailing calendar

·        Notice U7: Rowing and paddling calendar (NB lots in April, May and June)


Other PLA publications …


·        Larger scale chart of Hammersmith area, designed for rowers. Dove pier is point 21.See also rowing code of practice (NB picture of Dove pier on page 9).

·        NEW PLA tide tables (NB GMT)

Weather sites (recall go/no-go discussion in para 13 of Andrew’s newsletter 4: normally we don’t go if wind is in excess of force 4 (13-18 mph)


·        NEW Metchecksee detail for  Limehouse, Greenwich, Woolwich; and for Putney


·        NEW Met Office – see detail for Limehouse, Greenwich, Woolwich; and for Putney




QDJ newsletters (to all participants)

·        Main QDJ website, including list of all participating boats (as of 17 January)

·        Number zero: 30 December 2011


·        Number 1: 2 March including data protection form (deadline 23 March)

·        Number 2: 9 March including security questionnaire from Met Police (deadline 6 April – now changed to 13 April)

·        Number 3: 16 March (including draft letter to send to your insurers)

·        Number 4: 23 March (including revised list of participating boats)

·        Number 5: 30 March (including drink and drugs policy, a new way of submitting security information deadline 13 April, and a helpful six point checklist).

·        Number 6: 5 April, includes:

o   Important information on maximum numbers (extract)

o   new website for registering security details

o   new website for participants (NB the userid and password given also work for this site)

o   new online shop for merchandise

·        Number 7: 13 April, includes

o   Fire safety (nice photo of Fireflash)

o   Vessel capacity update

o   Final reminder to check your details for souvenir programme


·        Number 8: 23 April, includes:

o   Info on festival in Battersea Park

o   VITAL information on scrutineering (see checklist one, for Friday 1 June, and checklist two, for Sunday 3 June)

o   Revised limits for vessel capacities (see pages 5-6)

o   Pre-order the official souvenir programme

·        Number 8½: 3 May. Supplementary email bulletin covering :

o   £10 requested contribution to costs

o   Reminder to check details of your crew, as registered on the online system (I got the password for this system in an email dated 5 April)

o   Check vessel capacity as recorded on the online system

·        Number 9: mega bulletin (90 pages!), with links to:

o   Generic passage plan – bridge arches, draft and air draft;

o   Pageant instructions, to be supplemented by instructions from our section leader, Andrew Phasey

o   Flotilla schematic – we are on page 3 (see large print relevant extract prepared by me)

o   A variety of RNLI safety tips eg six top tips, lifejackets, inboard engines (President excluded)

o   Flags protocol

o   Free offer of charting software

o   Information on all participating boats, including narrowboats

·        Number 10: 11 May:

o   Detailed timings (extract prepared by me for narrowboats)

o   Printable pageant map

·        Number 11: 18 May:

o   Briefing for skippers (we are 1900 Friday 1st June)

o   Advice for people on the bank

o   Information on posting of boarding passes

·        NEW Number 12: 25 May:

o   Water  taxis

o   Stage 1 scrutiny and issue of vessel numbers

o   New Q&A on security accreditation process (log in here). West India dock open 0800-1930 on 1 and 2 June, and from 0530 on 3 June. REMEMBER YOUR PASSPORTS!

·        NEW Final edition;

o   Enjoy yourself …

·        NEW Post – pageant message from the organisers

o   Thank you

o   Official photos

o   Discussions with the BBC …

o   PLA video – “a long day”

·        NEW yet another final newsletter (3rd July)

o   Interested in a plaque?

o   Want to send some records for the archives?

o   please make a further contribution to the Jubilee trust

·        And a really final one about the plaque (2nd August)


Participant websites, blogs etc


·        Leo 2 (blog, website)

·        Scholar Gypsy (website). See also explanation of bunting colours

·        Mr David (blog)

·        Fulbourne (website)

·        NEW Arrangements for publication of photos taken by boaters during rehearsals and the pageant

·        NEW PHOTO ALBUM – first entries on 17 May covering rehearsals on 12-13 May.

·        NEW Videos of the Belfry on 26 May, taken from:

o   the bow of Scholar Gypsy

o   the Surrey bank near Canary Wharf

o   opposite the O2 centre

o   Campanological details






·        Beatty (website)

·        President (website)

·        Doris Katia (website)

·        Red Watch (Canal boat project website)

·        Swingbridge (website)

·        Indigo Dream (blog)

·        Blackjack (website) – get your hair cut while hanging around in West India Dock

·        Centenary (website)

·        NEW Ernest (website, which the owner John Gwalter says is a little out of date)


Other miscellaneous information


·        St Pancras Cruising Club website, including their comprehensive Thames Cruising Guide (and recent article in SAS news – page 34 of this 14MB download)

·        6th April: tideway cruise. Video (4 minutes!) of the journey from Limehouse to Brentford, by Joel Sanders


·        Cruising Association at Limehouse – venue for the briefings (and visit the bar and restaurant afterwards)

·        The Gun – pub at West India Dock (near our mustering station)

Lotus floating Chinese restaurant – near our moorings in West India 

·        NEW Diesel supplies near Limehouse - New Era Oils on the Lea, just south of the A12 crossing. Quayside dispenser. Open 8-5 (Mon-Fri) and 8-12 on Saturday. 020 8534 1665. Not FAME free. See map

·        NEW Calor Gas at depot near New Era Oils, on west side of the waterway.

·        Blogs and photographs from the rehearsal in September 2011

·        Imray chart of the Thames (Teddington to Southend)

·        PLA chart of Hammersmith area (Dove pier is point 21).

·        River Thames news, with lots of pageant news (eg on Sea Cadets, and on the Avenue of Sail)


·        A cautionary tale (with thanks to Kathryn Dodington who spotted this)


·        Prompted by the scrutineering checklist, you may find this simple chart of the London waterways helpful. (Acknowledgements here)


·        While waiting for scrutiny in West India Dock, why not visit the following (ten mins on the Dockands Light Railway):

o   Cutty Sark – reopened on 25 April by HM the Queen

o   Royal River – exhibition at the National Maritime Museum, opened by HM the Queen

·        Maps and notes on how to get to Limehouse, Brentford and West India – an extract from the guidance I have just produced for the 37 different people coming on my boat during May and June!

·        Tracking ships and large boats. This recent PLA notice does not apply to us (see here for more detail). But it reminded me that one can track the vessels that do use this AIS system, using the Shipfinder website (Vauxhall to Margaret Ness – live results) or their simple app (Iphone and Android versions). Thanks to Richard of Indigo Dream for pointing this out to me a while ago. This system is of course not an substitute for keeping a good visual lookout!

·        Sheet for recording times upriver from Limehouse, and downriver to Margaret Ness – feel free to plagiarise.

·        NEW Practical information on where to watch the pageant, and associated logistical issues (tranposrt, security, bridge closures etc). More detail promised on 17th May

·        NEW Transport for London information on Jubilee events in London. Specific information for the pageant here, including bridge closures


·        NEW 17 May: details of the pageant itself and what is happening on the bank.


·        NEW Other water pageants

o   Rock of Gibraltar (a nice pub on South Oxford)

o   Henley on Thames

o   Goring and Streatley


Press coverage


·        President (Staffordshire) and more and NEW Daily Mail

·        Beatty (Merseyside and Dorset)

·        Shropshire Lass (er, Shropshire)

·        Doris Katia (Stourport)

·        Arthur Dent (St Pancras)

·        Mountbatten Crusader (Northants)

·        Marie Celeste (Lancashire)

·        Lord Toulouse (Worcestershire)  - and another, and yet more, and now a glossy magazine as well.

·        Diamond (stuck in Northampton)

·        Tarporley

·        Pirate Castle (Camden, London)

·        Centenary (Kenilworth)

·        Ketura (Newham, London)

·        Where to watch and eat from the bank (Telegraph)

·        An interview with Lord Salisbury (Telegraph)

·        Problems with the New Zealand boat (second item. Daily Mail. Since sorted, I think)

·        Standard article (and extra photos) on the launch of the rowbarge Gloriana, which will lead the pageant.

·        More coverage on Gloriana: Daily Telegraph (with video), London Historians, Citizenside, and BBC (one, two) 


·        ITV news item on Tupperware Navy rehearsal on 15 April.


·        PLA news release on all the work they are doing on moorings -  no mention of Dove Pier …. With pictures


·        The Royal Navy taking their biggest ship HMS Ocean through the barrier on 4 May – a “brisk crosswind” says the MOD. More coverage here


·        NEW Channel 4 news – NB 1 min 20 secs in


·        NEW BBC general news story


·        NEW Sky news – nice shots of narrow boats  (after the advert!)


·        NEW Guardian Article – featuring Lord Toulouse


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Thames River Festival, September 2011


Date and place updated

Item added (they will be highlighted for a few days)

9 June (Reading)

·        Thank you from the organising team

1 June (West India!)

·        Final pageant newsletter from Amy…

31 May (Limehouse)

·        Guardian coverage

28 May

·        Videos of the belfry in action on 26 May

·        Other Diamond Jubilee regattas

24 May (Limehouse)

·        PLA recreational users guide 2012 now available

·        One-page summary of bridge arches, from the generic passage plan

·        PLA video of the rehearsal by the Royal squadron and one on the PLA’s role

23 May

·        PLA notice on Blackfriars – very relevant to dispersal after the pageant

·        PLA video – briefing for all skippers

22 May

·        PLA notice on VHF radio

21 May

·        Calor Gas supplies near Limehouse

20 May

·        Andrew’s newsletter 9

·        Pageant newsletter 11

·        News pieces about the pageant  - including shots of 12 May rehearsal

17 May

·        New page with photo albums published by participants.

·        Information on the pageant and what is happening on the bank..

14 May

·        Transport for London travel information – 14 bridge closures.

11 May (Limehouse)

·        Amy’s newsletter ten – timings

·        PLA notices on Woolwich barrier and Southwark bridge

8 May

·        Weather forecast information

·        New section added for key operational documents

·        PLA operational order for 12-13 May rehearsals

7 May

·        Andrew’ newsletter 8 – accreditation on the Sunday morning

·        Practical information for shore parties wanting to watch the pageant

4 May

·        Important pageant newsletter 9

·        HMS Ocean passing through the barrier (just….)

·        Site investigations for the Thames tunnel: 11 to 27 May.

·        Temporary moorings between London Bridge and London Bridge City pier (25 May to 6 June)

3 May

·        Supplementary pageant  newsletter 8½

·        Updated map on stoppages on the Grand Union etc

·        PLA tidetables

·        PLA news release on preparing our moorings

3 May

·        Sheet for recording times

2 May

·        How to track large vessels

30 April

·        Limehouse lock stoppage (10 May).

·        Broken links to BW website mended

·        Guidance on publication of photographs (via links from this site)

29 April

·        Andrew’s newsletter 7: rehearsals, moorings, dispersal, anchor chain & warp

·        Maps showing access at Limehouse, Brentford and West India

28 April

·        PLA videos – on the pageant, and on tideway navigation

25 April

·        President in the Daily Mail

·        Local attractions: Cutty Sark and National Maritime Museum

·        Website for NB Ernest

24 April

·        Simple map of London waterways

23 April

·        Pageant newsletter 8 – very important!

·        Info on diesel suppliers near to Limehouse basin

22 April

·        Andrew Phasey’s newsletter 6: rehearsals, moorings, dispersal

22 April

·        Pruning of obsolete PLA notices

·        Websites added for all the remaining boats I can find on Google: Indigo Dream, Blackjack and Centenary

21 April (Northolt)

·        ITV news item on Tupperware Navy rehearsal last weekend.

20 April (again)

·        More coverage on the Gloriana

·        Arch closures at Lambeth, Vauxhall and Battersea

20 April

·        Press coverage on the launch of the rowbarge Gloriana at Isleworth

19 April

·        PLA notices: Waterloo Bridge arch closures and HMS Belfast heavy lifting opeations, and also Blackfriars arch closures (sorry I missed this one before, but I noticed today while walking over Southwark Bridge that this arch was closed…)

18 April

·        PLA notices: Westminster Bridge arch closures

·        PLA notice: Olympic security

·        A cautionary tale ..

·        Website for NB Swingbridge

17 April (boring old home)

·        Current stoppages and restrictions on the River Lea and in Limehouse Cut

·        Lots of new press coverage, for Tarporley, Centenary, Ketura, Pirate Castle & Diamond, and President

·        Neat PLA map of the Hammersmith area, showing where we will be mooring

15 April (Northolt, our base for the next month)

·        Comment added on the restrictions in place on the Grand Union south of Braunston.

14 April (Croxley, just after saying hello to NB Beatty)

·        Pageant newsletter 7

·        PLA notice on core sampling for the Thames Tunnel

11 April (Marsworth)

·        Website for NB Fulbourne

·        PLA notice: advance warning about restrictions 30 May to 5 June – for the pageant

8 April

·        Video of SPCC tideway cruise on 6 April, from Limehouse to Brentford

7 April

·        Andrew’s newsletter 5

5 April

·        Pageant newsletter 6

3 April

·        Lord Toulouse in the media again (Worcestershire Life)

2 April

·        Website for Red Watch

·        Commercial road locks – an Olympic success

1 April

·        Sign to go in the window, for Scholar Gypsy’s forthcoming cruise from Braunston to London

·        Websites for President and for Doris Katia

30 March

·        River Thames News website

·        Pageant newsletter 5, including useful checklist

·        Lots of good stuff from BW on water shortages

29 March

·        Blog for NB Mr David

·        Imray chart of the River Thames

26  March

·        Press coverage for Lord Toulouse