Isle of Wight

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Town: East Cowes

County: Isle of Wight

Directions: from the mainland,there is a fast passenger ferry to West Cowes, and a slow car ferry to East Cowes. You probably want the East Cowes one but if you get the fast boat you will need to walk across town (10 mins) and then cross the river by the Chain Ferry and then finally walk past the front of the East Cowes terminal. Walk north up Castle Street and then turn left towards the sea and follow the road along until it turns into the Esplanade which runs beside the beach. Keep walking until you find this childrenís playground on the right which has the pool in it.

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Type: purpose built model boat lake (sort of)

Size: small and clear

Shoreline access: all round

Depth: wellies

Any restrictions: none posted, but itís small!

Local club: no

Public access: yes

Shop: thereís a food, chocolate, drinks, ice cream kiosk quite close. Loos on the beach.

Anything else to add: Historically this was a bigger boating pond which has been partially filled in and turned into a kidís playground with a large paddling pool. So I assume paddling might take priority. However we rolled up on a sunny day in mid June and the park, the beach and the playground were utterly deserted.

Stiff wind off the sea blows down the centre of the pool. Clear clean water. SY7 was really too big for it and crossed the pond in about 30 seconds.


Updated by Andy Tribble, 12.04.2005:

Just in case anyone doubts that the rather small East Cowes paddling pool was once a proper boating pond, I attach two shots from the 1930's...



County: Isle of Wight

Description/directions: At the eastern end of the sea front just behind the beach, between North Walk and The Esplanade.

Type: Purpose-built boat pond.

Size: large, oval.

Shoreline access: 100%, concrete. But annoying island in the middle.

Boat club: Ryde Model Yacht Club,

Open public access Yes.

Dennis Saxecoburg of the VMYG reports:
" Ryde is still going strong, however the council in their wisdom have built an island right in the middle of the pond so it is no longer suitable for freesailers."

Information from Trevor Smith, 12.04.2006

Updated by Andy Tribble [23.04.2006] - 1922 postcard of Ryde lake before the island was added.

Ventnor, Isle of Wight

Ventnor is right on the southern side of the island. In the first half of the 20th century it had a highly active model yacht racing club but this has apparently expired.

The cards show a toy boat pond. In the earlier cards it is a narrow ornamental stream. In the later ones it is a paddling pool, small boats only!

Trevor Smith reports:

"Dennis Saxcoberg of the IoW tells me that the Ventnor pond is now a paddling pool, I think it is the one that has a large concrete map of the island in the middle of it".

Information from Trevor Smith, 12.04.2006

Anything to add or amend?