Sailing Directions

Extracts from RNYC Sailing Directions, Humber to Rattray Head. ©RNYC.

Satellite view of Coquet Yacht ClubThe waters around Coquet Island provide interesting sailing. The area was once well-buoyed and their removal has made the use of the channel inside the island rather more difficult. However, it is still worthwhile and offers the most picturesque aspect of the island. Seasonal racing marks can help, but care must be taken and without local knowledge a good rise of tide is recommended.

Passing between Coquet Island and the mainland, the major danger is the Podler Ware Spit with a least depth of 0.3 metres. If the tidal height is sufficient for clearance then the channel is over 2 cables wide.

From the south pass to seaward of Hauxley Head. This is on the junction of the red and white sectors of Coquet Light. A good line for Coquet Channel is the white house on Pan Point in line with the keep of Warkworth Castle, although the latter is not always easy to pick out. As the narrows are approached the best water lies a cable from this line towards the island, with Amble North Pier bearing 297º.

If making for Amble the sewer outfall buoy is a useful mark. If heading north then keep at least 2 cables inshore of the island. Once past the northern end of the island you should be in the white sector of Coquet Light to avoid the Pan Bush. The Pan Bush is a dangerous shoal (0.3metres) when there is any swell, as is the shoal north of Coquet Island. Passage through the area should not be considered in strong onshore conditions associated with any seas.

From the north, Amble is best approached inshore of the Pan Bush, heading for the entrance.
Passage outside Coquet Island from either direction is quite straightforward. At night the red sectors of Coquet Island cover Boulmer Stile to the north and Hauxley Head to the south.


See section on Coquet Island and Approaches to Amble. From the east or south the Pan Rocks must be avoided. From the north the approach is clear.


There are several good anchorages, useful if waiting for water into Amble; north of the Harbour, off Hauxley Links and to the north-west of Coquet Island.

Hauxley Haven

A century ago this haven was valued for the shelter it gave in northerly weather. It lies immediately south of Hauxley Head. There are cottages on the shore dating from when it was a fishing community.

Feel your way in and anchor due east of the cottages in 4 metres.


Large scale dredging (in 2000) has considerably improved depths with 2 metres over the bar at low water but this cannot be relied on and without local knowledge the entrance should be approached only after a significant rise of tide. The location of the best water over the bar varies according to recent weather conditions and dredging. Local boats may give an indication. Give a good berth to the knuckle of the south pier then the channel follows the south side of the river.

The harbour entrance breaks in onshore conditions. If there is any doubt it is best to wait for high water. A guide to conditions can be gained from the Pan Bush; if it is breaking then the bar will be dangerous; but take care, as it can still be dangerous without this indication.

Amble Marina (VHF Ch. 80) will report on the current depth on their cill which will indicate the depth on the bar.


The Broomhill Quay is busy with fishing boats and any stay is liable to be disturbed. The Radcliffe Quay, beyond the fishdock, is much quieter.

The Marina has a cill approximately 0.8 m above Chart Datum.

There is a tide gauge at its entrance.

The Marina is entered between the old wooden jetty and a port hand buoy. Secure at the end of the second pontoon, beside the fuel pumps to receive berthing instructions. Out of hours, mooring instructions are left here in a box. Coquet Yacht Club has drying moorings up-river of the Marina which may be available.

Access to Amble Marina

Access Times over cill, either side of HW.
Tidal Info - Copyright © RNYC
Coquet Yacht Club is grateful to RNYC for the reproduction here of this extract from RNYC Sailing Directions, Humber to Rattray Head ©RNYC. Copies may be obtained from chandlers and from RNYC for £25 + £5 p&p. Contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..