Statement on damaged vessel at Watermans Park moorings
Published: Monday, 16th December 2019
Councillor Steve Curran, Leader of Hounslow Council, said:
“The council is aware of the issue of the damaged boat at Watermans Park moorings. Various parties have occupied the vessel over the past three weeks and the police have been called on more than one occasion to deal with anti-social behaviour. This has included deliberate damage to the park railings which has necessitated the erection of temporary fencing to protect the riverside.
“The inhabitants are known to the police, who were called and took action, arresting one of the parties. Following this, the council acted to remove the vessel, only to find that it had been deliberately damaged and could no longer be safely removed from the site as it would be a hazard to shipping. Our contractors visited the site two weeks ago and confirmed that it would be uneconomical to repair the boat, which is becoming increasingly unsafe due to the continual damage from the tide each day. We are now considering the options available to resolve the issue, including potentially properly scuttling the vessel so that it is no longer a danger to river traffic.
“It would now appear that a vulnerable individual was injured whilst occupying the vessel over the weekend; we have been in contact with him via our housing outreach service, St Mungo's, to see what support we can provide. We are also taking further steps to secure the site so no further incidents occur.
“The council has planning permission to redevelop this waterfront site, including a new marina which will create jobs for local people and revitalise the area. We want to make sure that everyone is moored there legally and to create a clean, safe and accessible marina, and removing the damaged vessel and making the site safe and secure is the next step in delivering this project that can be enjoyed by all.”