Wednesday, 27 May 2015

Still fixing mooring prices?

I've highlighted for several years the moorings at Engineers Wharf in West London, and more importantly, given CRT's inability to keep the moorings fully let, the apparently inflated reserve prices that had been maintained, one suspects to help justify keeping prices up for other moorers locally.

It is more than three years since I first highlighted this, and for much longer than that, there have been persistent vacant berths (and lost income) at Engineers Wharf.  (Link to 83 no. closed vacancies/adverts and prices at Engineers Wharf since 2010! )

Well as of today there are no less than seven berths advertised as Buy It Now vacancies and the price for a 70' berth has been set at £5880 (up from £5292 as the reserve this time last year.)

Curious too that in the interim similar berths were the offered only three months ago with a reserve of £4998? So if you want, you can buy it now for £900 more than the reserve price when it was last auctioned - Any takers?!

What the heck is going on here!?

It seems that despite the good intentions set out  in the outcomes of the Moorings Sales Consultation, CRT are still in this case setting prices at pretty much at random. If anyone can make sense of these price variations, do let me know!

And of course it remains to be seen if the current vacancies will let. 

So what about the consultation outcomes from the mooring sales consultation as a whole? Well on paper it's an improvement to the previous situation although it remains far from transparent and in particular the exact formula used to calculate the reserve or buy-it-now prices are still its seems wholly in CRT's gift. As above, these seem to be two different numbers!

There are however some potentially positive intentions for the future if some of the things mentioned in the conclusions and decisions section are implemented; one of my longstanding bugbears, about site maintenance, is promised to be addressed: There is a 'decision' to publish 'site standards and maintenance specifications'.

OK I could bang on about how the Ombudsman told the old BW to do this over a decade ago, and about how despite that and several meetings over the last few years to get it up to date, I am still waiting for an up to date maintenance schedule for my site, but....

The promise of some sort of loyalty discount for longstanding customer is also interesting.

And I felt overall the report presented a more honest representation of the views submitted by respondents than I can remember in many years of being involved with BW/CRT consultations. My petition also got its own mention!

However when you compare this with the reality of the prices that have been set at Engineers Wharf my usual scepticism takes hold again. Actions speak louder than words and there is still a lot to do when it comes to actions...

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