Report - - The Hillside Dutch Navy Ship, Rochester, Kent - June 2020 | Other Sites | 28DaysLater.co.uk

Report - The Hillside Dutch Navy Ship, Rochester, Kent - June 2020


On the astral plane
28DL Full Member
Apart from KentOnline has to offer, there is little else online regarding the history of this vessel, but here is what I managed to string together...
"The Hillside", constructed in 1970 and originally built as an accommodation barge for the Dutch Navy, has just under 70 rooms and was able to sleep over 200 people. Along with all its toilets and showers, the vessel also has a cinema capable of seating up to 80 people.
The ship, initially from Holland, was first transported to Portsmouth in 1990, where it remained moored and disused for the following 23 years. Then, in 2013 it was towed to Rochester, where it continued to remain disused, and for the most part, forgotten about.
However, in recent years a number of ideas were entertained for the future of the abandoned ship. From a floating hotel to an emergency accommodation base for refugees, and in most recent times even the idea of it becoming a quarantine base for Coronavirus was mentioned. Although, none of these ideas were actually followed up.
The vessel is currently under the ownership of Maritime Solutions, who continue to pay mooring costs after the vessels original owner went bankrupt, however, despite these costs, the future of "The Hillside" still remains unforeseen.

On Route To The Ship - (Phone Shots)

Kayaking From Upnor Jetty (Left)
Approaching The Ship (Right)


The Explore:
On a particularly hot day late last month, myself and my mate @james nichols decided we'd finally get round to exploring the locally nicknamed "floating hotel" in Rochester, which was something I'd had an eye on for quite a while seeing as nobody else that I know of has bothered exploring it recently. Although I suppose a barrier of deep water can sometimes be just as effective as an electric fence at keeping most people out.
So, after managing to get down to Upnor, we launched the kayaks and were soon off downstream towards Rochester with the aim of returning within the 2-hour window of high tide, (needless to say, that didn't quite happen).
After a good hour or more of kayaking, we'd arrived, and what a sight it was up close. I'd seen this place many times from the shore, but never really accounted for the fact I'd been looking at it from a distance, as getting up close to it was something of an eye-opener.
Now, having shimmied up one of the mooring ropes, we were on. Despite it having a somewhat weathered and rusted exterior, the interior was relatively clean, with a surprising number of original features still intact, maybe even a little too many features, as I found a whole file of some quite sensitive information still on board...
We must've stayed for a good couple of hours before realising the tides were changing, and so, with little time to waste, we made an exit, soon to find out it was a lot easier getting out the kayaks than it was getting in them.
This was definitely one of those seasonal explores to say the least, as even on a hot day, it's never quite as warm on the water. All in all, was certainly an interesting afternoon's jaunt :)).

1. Plan Of The Vessel


2. The Kitchen


3. The 80 Seat Cinema


4. The Washroom


5. One Of The Hallway's


6. The Showers


7. Lower Deck Office


8. Original Maps


9. One Of The Cabins


10. Another Corridor


11. Dutch Anyone?


12. Time To Go


Thanks for Looking -

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28DL Full Member
28DL Full Member
Bloody brilliant this, love it!

Calamity Jane

i see beauty in the unloved, places & things
Regular User
Not seen this in a while. Well done, good shots there. Id like to see the cabins if you have any shots? Look a fun explore :thumb