** Under development **

July 2019: This page is currently being built. Some information may be incomplete. Where possible photos may be added too.

There are a few tempting sites locally for some shore dives. As there is a lot of potential for boat traffic in the area and other potential issues, it is highly recommended that each diver carry their own dSMB and know how to deploy and use it. As a club we often teach even out Ocean Divers how to use an SMB as even when on the club’s RIB, they are an essential piece of kit.

Selsey

Our favourite shore dive is by the Lifeboat station in Selsey. When diving here it is very important that each diver carries a dSMB. An SMB must be deployed between buddies at all times when in the water. Do not dive immediately in from of the new Lifeboat Station.

Mulberry Divers have published some great safety information on this site. Consider this a ‘Must read’ before diving here. In the past a lifeboat launch had to be cancelled due to divers in the wrong place and without an SMB. Please don’t make it another.

The maximum depth for the dive is around 6-8m.

Slack water is around 4 hours before high water Portsmouth (or Selsey Bill) and 3 hours after. The best dive for visibility is on the 3 hours after. Neap tides offer the better and longer slack.

As this site is exposed, when the wind is blowing onshore, the waves can make it dangerous to get in and out of the sea. For this reason it is best dived with westerly to northerly winds. Avoid diving with an easterly or south easterly wind.

Sadly the old Lifeboat Station on the pier has now been removed. All the struts were removed too. There are a few items on the seabed where it used to be. When the pier was there, it was possible to see just how much the current runs along this shore. Please do get the tides & timings right, or you’ll have a long walk back to the car at best.

The stony beach can make it a challenge after the dive.

Do check the Selsey Lifeboat Station website and facebook page for any events. For example Selsey Lifeboat station has an annual launch day and also has a raft race too. These could mean that parking is difficult at best and it may be almost impossible to leave the area, let alone dive, during these times.

The Lifeboat Inn is very popular at the weekend for families, so please remember to watch out for the little’uns running around. The pub provides an excellent place to debrief after the dive and to complete your log books before heading home.

Southsea Pier

In the past diving in and around the pier at Southsea was popular. Currently, it is no longer a good idea to dive under Southsea Pier. The pier is in danger of collapse and pieces have fallen into the water.

There is a plan to renovate the pier. This could take a few years. During this time it will be even more dangerous to dive near the pier.

Gosport/Stokes Bay

Off the beach by the GAFIRS lifeboat station (east side of the slipway) are the remains of the pier that was a part of the Gosport railway. The pier was once used by a ferry service which went to the Isle of Wight.

The maximum depth is around 6-8m.

There isn’t much left and the few struts remaining are easily confused with a reef. For this reason there aren’t many hidey holes for marine life.

Visibility can probably best be described as “interesting”. Ranging from zero & dark to a couple of meters, but illuminated.

Do get the tides right as you’ll easily and quickly find yourself heading towards Southampton or Southsea. It would also be prudent to use an SMB during the dive. There is a sailing club based nearby and the lifeboat crew won’t be too happy if they are unable to launch either due to not knowing where the divers are.

A few club members dived this site a couple of times in 2017 whilst looking for an anchor that someone else had kindly left behind. They were boat dives for the safety of everyone. Off the pier the bottom is very much “Solent ooze” with little, if any, signs of life. There are better places for a bimble.