Meet Julian Seaman from Shoreham

Shoreham Port

Type of port (Trust, Private, Municipal etc)?

Main Commodities handled (imports and exports)?
Imports; Timber, Aggregates, Stone, Coated Roadstone, Cement, Steel, Oil Products, Road Salt. Export; Cereals, Biomass, Cullet.

Do you operate a pilotage service?
Yes, 4 hours before high water to 3 hours after.

Do you operate a VTS or port information service?
Local Port service

Do you have locks or enclosed docks?
Tidal and enclosed dock, entrance via the Prince George Lock (Leisure) & Prince Philip Lock (Commercial)

Maximum vessel dimensions?
120m LOA / 20m Beam / 6.7m draft.

Tidal range?

Port normal working hours?
6am to 10pm

Do you have Byelaws or Directions?
Both, We are so fortunate to have Powers of General Directions to which we have the Harbour Board to thank from years ago.



Your official title/position?
Harbour Master / Director of Marine Operations

Years in post?

Greatest daily challenge?
Managing everyones expectation of the day ahead.

Most satisfying achievement?
Keeping the port operational for 2 weeks with only the 3 tidal berths following overunning maintenance of the commercial Lock.

Favourite freetime activity?
Playing Golf badly

How many people work for the Harbour Master?



What time is set on your alarm clock?

What can’t you start your day without?
Morning Tea

Do you have a morning routine?
Start the day walking the dog before trying to beat the traffic into work. Check for emails from througout the night which can start the passage plan for the day.

Does it vary dramatically by day of the week or season?
The day dramatically changes as does the time of highwater. Import and export change with the seasons as does other activities, leisure activities has reduced but now we have a large number of visiting trawlers keeping us busy.



What’s the strangest thing you’ve encountered in your Port/Harbour?
Strange events are part of the job. No two days are the same in the Shoreham Port, never a dull moment.

What’s your one piece of advice to someone who would like to follow a career as a Harbour Master?
Always remember that the greatest challenge you are facing today, another Harbour Master most probably faced yesterday and they will have some wise advice for you. Don’t be afraid to ask the question.

What’s the best bit about your day/job?
Being involved in all marine activities – from being on the water, to meetings in London discussing changes to policy

Do you have fun facts about your Port/Harbour?
King Charles II makes his escape from England to Fecamp in the coal brig “Surprise”

Seaplanes were based at the port during WWII and they still owe harbour dues!

The Admiralty constructed the so-called “Mystery Towers” at Shoreham to stretch across the Varne Shoal. These floating forts were designed by civilian architect Mr G. Menzies and measured over 90ft high, they were intended to be united by steel boom nets and protected by mines. The towers were capable of providing a gun mounted defence system that could be manned by anything up to 100 servicemen. The first of these was towed out by steam tug on 12 September 1920 to become the Nab Tower off the coast of the Isle of Wight.


Ashore or Afloat?

Sail or Motor?

Flood or Ebb?

Summer or Winter?

Sunrise or Sunset?

Tea or coffee?

Laptop or Tablet?

Smartphone or iPhone?

Social Media or Quiet Life?
Quiet Life

What gets you through a working day?
Support and professionalism from all colleagues and a loving family waiting at home.