Section Committee

Section committee Reports 04/05


In addition to local duties SC members are being kept very busy by the need to attend the many meetings and seminars which could have an effect on pilotage matters.  Space doesn’t permit full details of this involvement to be included in these pages but members should take note of the circulars sent out to local Districts. The key areas of involvement at the moment are:

Joe Wilson: Vice Chairman representing the UKMPA on Maritime Navigation and Information Services (MarNIS) forum. This is a major EU project and details can be obtained from: John Pretswell: In addition to the considerable duties of Treasurer he has attended meetings with the T&G with regards to EU revised Ports directive (EUPP2) and also attended the AGM of the Advisory Committee on Protection of the Sea (ACOPS).

NB The revised ports directive is receiving much criticism from all sides but one worrying development is the direct support by Tony Blair for an open competitive free market Europe and this is in danger of becoming the official UK position thus overriding the opposition to the Directive by UK Major Ports Group as well as the UKMPA.

Don Cockrill has been kept extremely busy with the vast correspondence and meetings with the MCA and DfT over the review of the PMSC. Supported by other SC members there has been some clarification of the procedures to adopt if it is believed that a CHA is in breach of the PMSC and this has been interpreted as follows:

·        Make the complaint to HM

·        If not satisfied take it to the board

·        If still not satisfied take it to the MCA

·        Take it the Secretary of State

·        If they cannot resolve it notify UKMPA as evidence that ‘self regulation doesn’t work’.

There is still resistance to formally introducing a pilotage qualification and incorporating standards into the PMSC by the ports representatives and the Chamber of Shipping who still maintain that they “do not see the need”. It has been pointed out to the COS that it must be in the interests of their members to have well trained competent pilots and this novel suggestion seemed to take them by surprise!  The costs involved in attending the meetings and working on the standards have also used by these groups as an excuse. The UKMPA have pointed out that we do (and will) happily do it all for free!!  Other points that the UKMPA are raising are the misnomer term of Pilotage Exemption Certificate (PEC) with suggestions of recognition of what the certificate actually grants by changing the title to something along the lines of a Limited Pilotage Certificate. This would then be subjected to similar standards and qualifications as applicable to a pilot on the same class of vessel. I believe that Fowey already use the term Local Pilotage Certificate but formal change would require amending the Pilotage Act and this is an area that the UKMPA are currently working on ready for the new Government after May 5th.

President Lord Tony Berkeley

has asked the following Parliamentary Questions:


Q: Who is responsible for monitoring and enforcing the operation of the marine pilotage exemption certificates?

Lord Davies of Oldham:

Competent Harbour Authorities are responsible for the issuing and operation of pilotage exemption certificates.

Q: In respect of each competent harbour authority, what offences have been committed relating to pilotage exemption certificate and how many convictions there have been in the last five years?

Lord Davies: The Government do not hold records relating to marine pilotage exemption certificates.


Q: What are the terms of reference of the Marine and Coastguard Agency’s review of the port marine safety code; which ports have been found to be non-compliant; and when the final report will be published?

Lord Davies: The Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) is not reviewing the port marine safety code, and no report is due to be published. However, the agency is working with port authorities on compliance assurance issues on an ongoing basis.


Q: Who is responsible for informing the authorised pilots operating within a competent harbour authority about any adverse shoal depths discovered, following a survey of the English Channel?

Lord Davies: Harbour authorities are responsible for publishing appropriate hydrographic information, including warnings on recently identified navigational hazards, for the area within the harbour.  Waters, such as the English Channel, outside the jurisdiction of the competent harbour authority are surveyed according to arrangements agreed through the Civil Hydrography Programme. Survey areas are prioritised using a risk assessment methodology.

KRISTIAN PEDERSEN: Executive member

for region 6 and local secretary for SE Wales.  At the time of going to press the UKMPA had received the shock news that Kristian Pedersen had been summarily dismissed by APB. Kristian has appealed against his dismissal and the hearing has been set for Monday 18 April. Kristian is being fully supported for his hearing by both the T&G and a legal team.

Chairman’s Report



The DfT has handed the responsibility for monitoring, compliance and review of the PMSC to the MCA. This new responsibility will cover the Pilots National Qualification, HM Standards and PEC Standards.

Interestingly, the Working Time regulations and how they impact on Pilotage is on the agenda. Mr Joe Collins will head the department that will be renamed the Navigation and Safety Branch and both he and his new assistant a Mr Simon Gooder have been invited to the Eastbourne Conference. Two working groups will be established; one covering the PMSC and the other the qualifications and standards. The DfT, Ports Division, still retain overall control and responsibility. The Transport Select Committee, chaired by Mrs Gwenyth Dunwoody, has demanded action from the MCA on these issues. Don Cockrill (London) will head the UKMPA team assisted by Brian Wilson (Belfast) and they will attend both working groups. I have invited Mr Phil Hart ( pilotage) Ports Division, and his research assistant Mr James Weedon to the conference.

A question has been raised regarding body searches required by the ISPS code. I have contacted TRANSEC (transport security) at the DfT for their interpretation of the code. There exists a document on the Standards to be applied to the code.

TRANSEC is discussing with the DfT whether or not they can issue this confidential document to the UKMPA. However, amendments that have been issued to this document state that if an individual has been issued with a pass to gain entry into an area at Security State 1, would not normally be expected to be bodily searched. If you refuse to be searched by the individual acting as a security officer you will be held until a member of Her Majesty’s constabulary arrives and carries out the search.


Blake Lapthorn Linnell has dealt with contracts for Inverness and Peterhead and are monitoring the contractual discussions in Belfast and Wisbech. An opinion was sought and given regarding the interpretation of the Railways and Transport Act where, following an incident, a pilot was tested for alcohol content. Circular no 36/04 refers to the opinion given. Following more enquiries into our liability issues further opinion was given and circular no 29/04 refers.


The EU Commission, on the 13th October 2004, has adopted the new Port Access Directive without further consultation. Rest assured that the UKMPA will be lobbying hard against this directive on its various stages in the EP, Council and Commission.

I will be attending a meeting at

Transport House to prepare a strategy of opposition to this directive on 3rd November. Immediately following this meeting we will be meeting with Mike Davies, the Ports Division civil servant responsible for the Port Access Directive.


The Board of Directors of EMPA met in Antwerp on 1st and 2nd September. The three main topics were the new Port Access Directive, the finalisation of the Internal Rules and the MarNIS project. The Port Access Directive will be opposed by EMPA and lobbying will be carried out in each member country and in Brussels. Only one significant change has been made to the Internal EMPA Rules and that is the possibility of the Secretary/General being a non-active pilot with a maximum period of office of 2 years. This does not preclude an active pilot being nominated for the post at the General meeting that next year will be held in Poland.

The MarNIS project officially started on 15th September although the working groups do not begin until November. EMPA are looking for two pilot volunteers from each member country who are technically qualified, document competent, possibly with a knowledge of French and able to be released to cover the meetings. Joe Wilson has volunteered for one of the positions. If you are interested please contact the Chairman.

The Council of Presidents (COP) met on 8th and 9th September and an Extraordinary General Meeting (EGM) of EMPA was held on 10th September in Paris. The COP discussed the Internal Rules and the impending start of the MarNIS project. The EGM ratified the new Internal Rules of EMPA.

Review of the 1987 Pilotage Act

I have appointed our Vice Chairman Joe Wilson to the task of preparing amendments to the Act after which we will submit them to our legal team to scrutinise and then to the DfT for their perusal and translation into civil service jargon.


The AGM and quarterly Marine Advisory Board, of which I am a member, met at Quiniteq in Farnborough both Maritime and Aviation board members were present at the AGM. Another abuse of PEC’s was on the agenda and this was discussed but because I informed the board the matter is being investigated, CHIRP is putting the matter on hold. I have informed both the DfT and the MCA of the incident and they are investigating on our (UKMPA) behalf. I hope to have more information in the near future.

Association of Maritime Pilots of Ireland.

In September I met with the Irish pilots in Cork and experienced their renowned hospitality. I was able to give them an insight into the structure and way of operating of the UKMPA. We discussed all the relevant issues facing pilots in the UK and Europe; in particular the Working Time Regulations, the ETCS and MarNIS projects and the new Port Access Directive.

Their President Bob Kieran has accepted an invitation to attend the UKMPA

Conference in Eastbourne and give a presentation about his association


Conference is in Eastbourne on 17th and 18th November. A day delegate rate of only £25 is offered and I very much hope that pilots in the near locality will take advantage of this and attend.

The Section Committee

Vice Chairman: Joe Wilson: (Tees)

In addition to the responsibilities detailed in the Chairman’s Report, Joe attended the 17th IMPA conference in Istanbul and his detailed report was included in the October issue of Seaways magazine.

John Pretswell: Treasurer (Forth)

· UKMPA accounts on a weekly, monthly and quarterly basis

· Reconciling quarterly membership figures for T&G subscriptions

· Preparation for treasurer’ report and budget preparation for the Annual Conference in November

· Secretary’s work in advising District Secretaries of Section Committee

Regional elections and nominations

· Notification to District Secretaries on Proxy voting at conference, also hotel and delegate booking forms

· Scottish Pilot’s representative.

Geoff Taylor: (Tees)

· Senior Vice-Charman IMPA. Attended 17th Conference in Istanbul

· Attended the GLA’s 2020 vision for navaids

· Unfortunately the news on the IMPA front is not good insofar as Hein has had a recurrence of cancer and is currently undergoing chemo and radiotherapy

· Issues we shall be covering in the future include the use of ECDIS charts

· Deep Sea pilotage issue

· Attended the American Pilots congress in san Francisco representing IMPA

· Presented a paper in Newcastle on the Pilot Master relationship to a P&I club technical seminar

· Had an initial meeting with the chair of their International Pilotage Committee

· IMO MEPC meeting where our single interest will be developments of PSSAs.

Don Cockrill: (London)

· Attends IMO Nav sessions

· Attends MCA meetings

· VTS steering group


· Attended GLA 2020 vision

· Member of PMSC / Pilotage Act working group and attends DfT/MCA meetings.

Kristian Pederson: (Swansea)

· Represents the interests of South West members

· Involved in the legal aspects of pilotage.

· Recruitment of new members

· Technical and training matters.

Paul Haysom: (Great Yarmouth)

· Representing the small ports and has written to pilots in these ports detailing the benefits of UKMPA membership.

· Attends miscellaneous meetings on behalf of the UKMPA

· Meeting with Navigators and General to discuss rates, implications of the FSA (Financial Services Act) and Insurance for Pilots operating in the VTS.

David Devey: (Liverpool)

· Represents NW UK and self employed pilots

· Attends miscellaneous meetings on behalf of the UKMPA

· Review of the Pilotage Act and PMSC

· EMPA EGM (Emergency General Meeting ) to ratify the new Internal Rules of EMPS (Non-profit Association under Belgian Law).

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