You may be ok... (as to not having to pay European VAT) Read the customs website....
this is the relevent portion I think from HM Revenue & Customs
my bold to highlight:
"4.11 Are there any additional requirements if I am transferring my residence to a place in the EU?
If you are moving your normal home from a non-EU country to an EU country, including the UK, you may import your vessel free of customs duty and VAT providing you:
have lived outside the EU for a continuous period of at least 12 months; and
have possessed and used the vessel outside the EU for at least 6 months prior to importation; and
did not get the vessel under a duty/tax free scheme (see below); and
declare the vessel to our officer; and
will keep the vessel in the EU for private use; and
do not sell, lend, hire out or otherwise dispose of the vessel in the EU within 12 months of importation unless you notify us first and pay duty and VAT on disposal.
If you purchased the vessel under a duty/tax free scheme in the vessel’s country of origin or departure, relief from customs duty and VAT will only apply if at the time you got the vessel you were:
of an officially recognised international organisation;
of NATO or UK forces, or the civilian staff accompanying them, or the spouse of such a member; or
you can prove that duty and tax has subsequently been paid and has not been, nor will be, refunded.
Our officer will give you the form we require on your arrival. You should be ready to produce the vessel and all evidence of use and possession outside the EU such as registration papers and berthing fees
. The rules regarding your ‘normal home ’ are complex. If you are in any doubt, please contact our National Advice Service
or any of the offices listed in Section 7.
If you do not arrive with the vessel yourself, we will not normally release it until you arrive. However, we may release it for storage
under certain conditions. You should contact us for details of these arrangements.
If you import a vessel under temporary importation conditions (see Section 5) and then decide to move your normal home to the UK, you may still apply for Transfer of Residence relief."