Welcome to our blog!

visit-nci-ct-official-sitehere you will find informal news about events at and around the NCI Calshot Coastwatch Station…

For official information about NCI Calshot Tower, the National Coastwatch Institution, and useful Solent and Southampton Water marine information, please visit our main web site – https://nci.org.uk/calshot

Posted in Media

OMRA at Calshot

The Offshore Model Racing Association held their annual visit to Calshot on Sunday 17th June 2018. Here are some photos taken before I went on watch in the Tower, and also some photos from the Tower. I’ve put many more photos on the Solent Radio Control Model Boat Club web site.


Posted in Seen from the Tower, This and That! | Leave a comment

Buckingham Palace Garden Party

invite-3smColin Lewis writes: As many of you will know, we were really lucky to be chosen as the representative of The National Coastwatch Institution at the Garden Party at the Palace on 31st May! It all started with a phone call from HQ and then the Invitation via the Lord Chamberlain from the Queen!!

IMG_0767smWe travelled to a hotel in St James in the morning and after an early lunch we left by taxi for the Palace… we should have walked, the traffic was terrible, but the weather had defied all predictions and was excellent. At the gates we met a number of ‘other lucky people’ and very quickly made friends with all those about us whilst waiting a short while for the police to check our invitation number and identity.

marquee-smAfter walking through the archway the quadrangle and the Palace itself we were faced with the view of the gardens, the marquees and of course the people …..

And then we walked around whilst listening to the bands, admiring the finery that all had availed themselves before joining the queues for the ‘afternoon teas’. These as you would expect were efficiently carried out, both in quantity and quality.. including cucumber sandwiches of course, once again talking to a variety of guests ranging from the emergency services to military, from local authorities to various voluntary services, all the time taking photographs until imperceptibly lines were being formed for the ‘walkabout’.

buckpalace05_1The National Anthem was played and then Her Majesty appeared dressed in a beautiful green outfit, being carefully looked after and briefed by a succession of well dressed top hatted gentlemen about specific guests who were to be presented, but all done so quietly and efficiently. We were very lucky to be close on several occasions and were able to see how well and happy she seemed, bringing a smile to so many faces. Prince William then arrived dressed in morning suit and top hat and once again chatted intensely to so many people, taking such an interest in all that was being said.

All too soon it was time to leave and slowly we exited, once more through the Palace… a day to remember.

Posted in Media, Station News | Leave a comment

The Opposite View!


We’ve all watched “SP” pass the Tower many times (and hopefully remembered to add a tick to the vessel count!). Here’s a view of the Tower from SP; our thanks to Chris Ward of ABP for the photograph.

Posted in Tower and Local Views | Leave a comment

Sea Shanties at Yarmouth

sea-shantiesIf you are on the Isle of Wight (or fancy a trip over there) why not visit the Green at Yarmouth for this Celebration of Sea Songs and Shanties?

It’s in aid of the Needles NCI Station.

But if you are on the mainland on the 3rd June, remember that  the new Hengistbury Head NCI station have a sponsored walk from their temporary location at the Southbourne Beach Office to their proposed site at the Coastguard lookout on the Headland.

Contributions Welcome!

Posted in This and That! | Leave a comment

Low Tide on Calshot Spit

The tide seemed particularly low over the spit at 1540 on Sunday (13th May 2018) even though the Bramble Tide Gauge was showing 1.15m, only slightly less than the forecast astronomical tide. Neither the air pressure (at 1015mb) nor the light winds would have been expected to cause the tide to be low. Strange!

Posted in Seen from the Tower