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Chief Harbour Master team

The harbour masters are responsible for ensuring compliance with the Port Marine Safety Code (PMSC), ensuring the safety of navigation for all mariners in the Port of London, enforcing the rules and regulations and leading on Port Security and Emergency and Resilience Planning for the PLA.

Chief Harbour Master - James Stride


James has overall responsibility for navigational safety on the tidal Thames. The CHM’s team includes Harbour Masters, Vessel Traffic Service (VTS) & Safety Management Systems (SMS), Pilotage including all PLA pilots, Richmond Lock & Weir, the Pilot Cutter and the Harbour Patrol launches.

Senior Harbour Master - Cathryn Spain

Has overall management of the Harbour Masters Team. Cathryn leads on Port Security and Resilience and emergency management and is Chair of the Thames Port Security Authority and Thames Resilience Panel. Cathryn also actively supports the development of the Continuous Professional Development Scheme for the Thames in conjunction with the Thames Skills Academy.

Cathryn is also on the Board of Estuary Services Ltd, a wholly owned PLA subsidiary that provides and operates Pilot Launches for the Thames and Medway.

Harbour Master (SMS & VTS) - Simon Phillips

Simon leads the VTS Department and is responsible for the strategic development of the department’s policy and procedural management as well as national/international liaison activities. Simon also retains strategic management of the PLA’s IALA and MCA accredited training organisation. Simon is also responsible the maintenance of the port’s Marine Safety Management System (SMS).

Find out more about London VTS.

Find out more about the work of the SMS team.

Dave Newbury, Marine Pilotage Manager

Managing the pilotage function which includes pilots (trainees, sea, river), the simulators, the pilot coordinators and pilot taxis. Also responsible for the safe use and training of the pilot ladder training facility at Denton.

Meet the Pilotage team.

Find out more about our Pilotage service.

Jim Deeney, Lock Manager

The Port of London Authority owns and operates Richmond Lock and Weir, which is also the base for the harbour service patrols between Putney and Teddington Lock.

Meet the Richmond team

Find out more about Richmond Lock.