Pleasure boat owner issues plea for help

Jason Foster with the former Allchorn pleasure boats he needs help to renovate and put into service again. E16139M
Jason Foster with the former Allchorn pleasure boats he needs help to renovate and put into service again. E16139M

THE OWNER of Eastbourne’s once-popular Allchorn pleasure boats is asking people to help to keep the trips running.

The historic boats, which take people around Beachy Head and back, didn’t operate last year because of rising costs and maintenance issues but director Jason Foster says he hasn’t given up and is appealing for help to get them running again.

He said, “We know the Allchorn boats are historic to Eastbourne and would love to keep the trips running into the future.

“Sadly, with our limited funds, we can no longer see that happening without help.

“Since the William Allchorn was last in service in 2009, the pleasure boat business has proven to be increasingly difficult to operate.

“Maintenance is always a challenge and the increasing costs relating to operational regulations are relentless.

“The good news is that we haven’t given up.

“But now our own efforts to keep the boats running have hit the rocks, and after having exhausted our own ideas, we need help and we need it fast.”

Jason says he is looking for ideas, help, enthusiasm and encouragement and ideally financial help as well as qualified crew and capable maintenance volunteers to help with the William Allchorn and Southern Queen.

He said, “We are asking everyone for all for their ideas and help to keep the trips running.

“We are looking for willing people who are able to commit.”

Jason can be contacted at Allchorn Pleasure Boats, Net Shop 5, Fishermans Green, Royal Parade, or by email

He said, “Over the years we have heard many wonderful stories from people taking our glorious trip to Beachy Head lighthouse - people who have come from far and wide with their own story to tell.

“The anecdotes make us even more anxious to prevent the Beachy Head trips from becoming a thing of the past.

“In 2008 a lovely elderly couple came on board - all excited as though it was their first trip - but it turned out they had been taking the trip every year for many years as they had met each other on board, and were celebrating their 40th anniversary with us.

“It’s good to know how much the pleasure boats have meant to people visiting Eastbourne over the years but we need to save this historic venture for future generations.”