BURNHAM OVERY HARBOUR TRUST
Caring for the creek
Charity commission no.287315
who we are and what we do
The Burnham Overy Harbour Trust is a registered charity (No.287315) set up in 1982 to manage the harbour and creek for the benefit of its users. The objects of the charity are
- to manage the harbour area in line with environmental and heritage objectives
- to maintain and improve the creek and harbour and regulate access to the creek for those purposes
- to co-operate with relevant organisations to promote water safety and application of byelaws
The Trustees of the Charity are:
The Earl of Leicester
David Hart QC
David de Stacpoole
The land and creek at Burnham Overy Harbour was bought by the Earl of Leicester (the Holkham Estate) in 1922 and is leased to the Burnham Overy Harbour Trust (the Charity) for £10 a year. To read a copy of the lease, click
The Charity operates under a constitution which ensures the harbour is managed fairly and in the interests of all harbour users and local people. To read a copy of the constitution,click
Much of the land leased to the Charity forms part of CL65, a registered Common and is therefore subject to common rights. Common rights involve the entitlement to take a specific product from land belonging to another, in this case the Holkham Estate. The rights of common and the names of the rights holders in relation to CL65 are registered at Norfolk County Council. The rights holders are entitled to exercise their registered rights (grazing, wildfowling etc.) unhindered as well as such further ancillary rights as are reasonably necessary to exercise their registered rights. All other rights remain vested in the landowner who has granted a lease to the Charity which in turn has appointed a Management Committee.
The Management Committee is responsible for the operation of the Harbour and it includes representatives from Scolt Head and District Common Rights Holders, Burnham Overy Parish Council, Norton Parish Meeting, Overy Sailing Club, The Holkham Estate, Natural England, The Boathouse and Kings Lynn and West Norfolk BC
Scolt Head and District Common Rights Holders: Peter Connor
Burnham Overy Sailing Club: Richard Warner, Andrew Green
Natural England: John Ebbage
Holkham Estate: Sarah Henderson
Kings Lynn and West Norfolk Borough Council: Tom de Winton
Burnham Overy and Norton Wildfowlers: Simon Raven
Burnham Overy Parish Council: Simon Raven, Pam Thompson
Burnham Overy Parishioners: Ian MacKechnie-Jarvis, John Lumley
Burnham Overy Boathouse: Tim Gatti
Co-opted by the Management Committee
Buoys/Wells Harbour Liaison:
Channel/Groynes: Kevin Gathercole
Projects: John Lumley
Hon. Chair: David Horton-Fawkes
Hon. Secretary: Peter Low
Hon.Treasurer: Jonnie Usher
The Management Committee meets 4 times a year in the Village Hall at Burnham Overy. All meetings start at 7pm apart from the AGM which starts at 6pm. The dates of the meetings in 2018/19 are:
Friday 11th May - Minutes (draft until approved) Minutes 110518
Friday 13th July EGM - Please note this meeting will take place in Burnham Thorpe Village Hall and start at 7pm
Friday 28th September
Friday 1st February 2019
The AGM will be held at 6pm on Friday 19th April 2019
Minutes of the meetings in 2017/18 are available here:
Friday 12th May - Minutes Minutes 120517
Friday 7th July - Minutes Minutes 070717
Friday 29th September - Minutes Minutes 290917
Friday 2nd February 2018 - Minutes (draft until approved) Minutes 020218
The AGM was held at 6pm on Friday 30th March 2018
Minutes of the meetings in 2016/17 are available here:
Friday 13th May Minutes 130516
Friday 8th July Minutes 080716
Friday 21st October Minutes 211016
Wednesday 1st February Minutes 010217
The AGM was held on 14th April 2017 at The Boathouse, East Harbour Way
AGM Agenda AGM Agenda
2016 Minutes 2016 Minutes
2016 Accounts Accounts
AGM Report Report
There is some confusion over the extent of the Holkham Estate’s ownership and the land leased to the Charity. It has been suggested that the some or all of the land is by owned by the Crown Estate, the Common Rights Holders, the Parish Council and/or the National Trust, to name but a few. An extract from the 1922 Conveyance showing the extent of the land purchased by the Earl of Leicester in 1922 can be seen here.
Some of this land was subsequently sold to the Crown, the National Trust and others but the majority remains owned by the Holkham Estate and leased to the Harbour Trust. The rights holders are entitled to conduct their common rights unrestricted but they do not own the land and the management of the land is vested in the Charity for public benefit. The exact extent of Holkham Estate’s ownership can be confirmed by visiting the Government’s Land Registry Website·but this map broadly illustrates the extent of the lease granted to the Trust.
what you need to know
Be aware that the Harbour has many dangers. By coming on to the Hard and/or the Creek area you acknowledge and agree to the following.
The Hard is not a car park and may flood at high tide
You come to the Hard and the Creek at your own risk and you are responsible for your own safety and the safety of your family and friends
The ebb flow (outgoing tide) can be very dangerous
Do not cross the Creek unless you know the state of the tide and the time of high tide, and are sure you can get back
Boats of 8 feet or more must be licensed and insured to use the Harbour. They must be driven safely and must watch out for and give way to swimmers
The use of Jet Skis or Waterskiing is not permitted
Camping or caravans are not allowed on the Hard. No overnight parking.
Please do not leave litter, and clean up after your dog.
More guidance is displayed at the entrance to the Hard - please read this
Burnham Overy Boathouse (which is entirely independent of the Harbour Trust) operates two webcams overlooking the Staithe
Boats of 8 feet or more must be licensed to use the Harbour. A licence allows the boat to be launched and used in the Harbour, but does not include a right to park or moor the boat.
It is a requirement that you have third party insurance before you launch.
The current Annual Fees for all moored or launched craft including sail and paddleboards are
Overall Length 8ft to 20ft £30.00
Overall Length over 20ft £50.00
As of April 2018, licences may be obtained in person from Overy Boathouse or Burnham Grapevine in Overy Road, Burnham Market PE31 8HH or by completing forms available by post using the contact link below or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
The local aids to navigation at Burnham Overy Staithe, under the management of Burnham Overy Harbour Trust, were inspected on 15/08/17 by an Officer of Trinity House.
The Trust having been granted a lease of the bed of the creek by the Holkham Estate aims to ensure that those who use moorings can continue to do so safely, and that the fairway is kept clear so boats can make passage without danger to others. Any moorings found to have been laid without consent may be removed.
There are no moorings currently vacant and there is no waiting list.
Around the harbour
Get In Touch
How you can help
There is a substantial cost attached to mantaining the harbour and creek and without this maintenance there would be more mud and sand and even less water – and in time the creek would pass into history.
This work has only been possible through appeals and donations and for it to continue we need your support!
If you enjoy visiting Overy Harbour and Scolt Head, please make a donation now - either in person at Burnham Grapevine, Overy Road, Burnham Market PE31 8HH or by post, to receive news of projects and events. Thank you!