I had a winter berth provisionally booked at Van Der Laan, Maasbracht. I visited them 2 weeks before I was due to leave the boat., but I was rather unimpressed by their replies to my questions. I need several jobs done over the winter (antifouling, anodes, engine service, etc), but it appears that they subcontract everything apart from operating the Travel-lift and placing boats in cradles. I was even required to stay with the boat while it was winterised (not by them) on a specific day. I could not leave the boat on their marina and have them winterise and move the boat to the lift-out quay. This didn't suit me so I dropped in to another yard that had been suggested - Guido Willems between Maasbracht and Maastricht. Guido seemed much more helpful and was happy for me to leave the boat on their only pontoon to be lifted a day or two after I left for home. I am confident they'll do the work required, but the proof will be when I return in the spring!
Van der Laan looked like a great place to winter a boat that needs no work. In fact they offer heated boat houses where winterising isn't necessary. They would be great for simple winter storage (on the water, on the hard, or in heated shed), but less so if any work is required.
I'll add Guido Willems to the Moorings Guide when I see their work and get the bill. Hopefully it'll be a favourable report.
This yard only stores boats on the hard, inside a shed or in the open - no in-the-water facilities. The latter is costing €1000 + VAT for 15m. Inside would be about €3000.
Thanks Paul. Is this the place in the Waterways Guide under Hautmont Port?
Worrying is the Remarks section saying "A very impressive, huge marina in a pretty, small town off the beaten track - but what a price! Even the winter rate is twice Portus Ganda in Gent, but cheaper than Brugge Coupure!"
I'll contact them anyway. If their published prices are such that their facilities are not being taken up, they may be open to sensible offers. Until the connection with the French system is re-opened, their location puts them at a serious disadvantage and their prices should be rock bottom if they want to stay in business while they are over 20 hours from a through route offering connections to BE or FR.
This coming winter we want the boat lifted and kept ashore (maybe under cover) for the winter and for a few jobs to be done - new anodes, underside repaint, polish paintwork, etc.
The boat is in the Netherlands this year, but the plan is for France next year so ideally somewhere in S Belgium or N France. I'm looking for suggestions for yards that could accommodate a 15 m boat of about 20 tons. The Classic Boat yard near Namur is a possibility but the costs are pretty high as they don't have their own crane but rent one in for lifts. Not Pont-a-Bar please! Anything near Givet or the French Meuse?
Thanks in anticipation
PS - I'm having difficulties with the Waterways Guide. If I choose the Map option, I see a map with pins showing a handful of Wintering Possible + Shipyard places in France and only 2 in all of Belgium. I'm hoping there are many more places that offer these services . If I click on these pins, often the pop-up screen has the top part un-viewable so I don't know which waterway or marina I'm reading about. Could the Editor offer assistance in getting the whole pop-up visible? Thanks