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Mon Jul 17, 2017 at 8:09am

Changing the oil on your narrow boat is only a problem if you don't know how to do it. You have a few options available; 

1. You can ask another boater (can be difficult especially if you're a man!)
2. Call in the experts from a marina which of course will cost you a few quid or 
3. Learn to do it yourself. 

If you are still reading I am assuming you have opted for option three and are going to give it ago yourself. Good for you!

The engine is the heart of your boat it not only provides power for cruising but it also provides you with hot water, electricity and heating. So a certain amount of pampering is required to keep her in good working order. 

Changing the oil and filters is a major part of keeping the engine in tip top condition. 

The oil and filter will get dirty through use so these will both need to be replaced every so often. The oil filter is a replaceable cartridge that cleans the oil as the engine runs. 

First things first you need to work out is when the oil change is required. The best way to understand when you should tackle this task is to refer to your boats engine manual. Which will state how often this job should be carried out. 

Next prepare to start the work. It's a bit of a messy job so dressing appropriately will make sense, a set of overalls or your general work clothes will be just right for this occasion not your favourite jeans and t shirt! Not necessary but disposal gloves will help keep your hands clean. 

Also having the right tools and all the equipment at hand will make changing the oil a lot easier. 


  • Oil
  • New filter
  • Container to pump oil into
  • Large oil container to empty old oil into and dispose of.
  • Rag
  • Funnel
  • Wretch
  • Disposal gloves

How to do it:

Firstly we need to get rid of the old oil. So locate the cap on the oil container of the engine and unscrew it. When this is done, remove the old oil from the crank case this is done by pumping a little handle which sucks the oil from the engine block and into the container you have ready.

Top Tip; Employee a rhythmic motion to ensure the oil exits smoothly and predictably don't get impatient and give the pump a great heave; this will only ensure the oil spatters over every surface except into the waiting container.

Now pour (using a funnel) the oil into an old oil can which you should have handy from the start, preferably one designed to hold at least 5 litres of oil. 

With the engine empty of the old oil its time to replace the dirty oil filter with new ones. 
We are almost done!

Finally steps

Most engines will hold approximately 5L of oil. However, you can’t be sure exactly what yours will take. So, fill up slowly bit by bit, checking the dipstick each time to ensure you don’t overfill it. If you discover you have accidentally overfilled it use the pump again to remove the excess oil. 

Screw the oil cap back on and viola you have successfully changed the oil on your narrowboat!

Clearing up. How to responsibly dispose of the oil;

There are plenty of marinas and boatyards who will accept used engine oil for free in their waste disposal facilities. But always ask before presuming your local marina will accept your waste.

Fri Jun 30, 2017 at 7:10pm



If the answer is YES ,then you will want to read our guide to narrow boating with your four legged friend.

There's nothing worse than setting of for your holiday knowing that you are leaving your four legged friend behind in kennels for the week, so do bring him with you, boating holidays were made for you and your four legged pal!




What to pack when going away with your dog 

As well as bedding, food and water bowls, food, treats, first aid kit, poo bags, and grooming equipment, include a lifejacket for your dog and plenty of towels in case he accidentally or intentionally takes a dip.

Take his collar (with waterproof ID) and lead for places where you may need to keep him under control for his own safety - and a spare lead just in case you lose one overboard.

You may also find that life afloat feels chillier at night,  so you may find your pooch benefits from a fleece/wool jumper in the evenings.

Safety tips for your dog and other towpath users

 Don’t let your dog drink the river or canal water. Ensure that you have clean drinking water available at all times on board and on shore when you moor up.

Consider a dog life jacket. Jackets with handles on the top are especially good for hauling the dog back on board just in case he falls in.  Canal banks can be steep and difficult for dogs to climb out of.

Put your dog on his lead when entering locks and mooring for their own safety.

If your dog enjoys running free when you go for a walk on the towpath, then be aware that when you approach bridges there maybe traffic around, so always be mindful to keep your dog Under your control.

Always keep your dog away from livestock and birds - chasing ducks may be fun for the dog, but it isn't for the ducks!

Carry or let your dog use a ramp to board and get off the boat.

 © Copyright Roger Kidd and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence

Etiquette when boating with your dog

Take care when meeting other towpath users with dogs. If your dog is off the lead it may be worth asking if their dog is ok with other dogs before approaching them, not all dogs are so friendly.

Stay away from the fishermen - apart from potentially getting in their way, hooks and lines may cause injury to dogs.

Don't allow your dog to disturb wildlife and keep him on a lead if you can't guarantee manners and obedience.

Tuck him in safely to the side of the path until cyclists have passed.

Scoop the poop and dispose of responsibly.


Time to sign up for boot camp!

 A leaner physique, flatter abs, toned arms and a tighter tush are all possible with a bit of boot camp training. No need to pack yourself off for a week to a fitness park, save your cash and create your own killer training session. Find a training plan online and do the work out with friends or on your own, there's plenty to choose from and most don't require expensive equipment, so whats stopping you?

*Always seek your doctors advice before starting any new life style change.


Follow these simple tips to get healthy skin:  

Tip 1: Minimal makeup  
Let your skin breathe. Try to minimize makeup usage. It is really not necessary to always use a blush, concealer, foundation, mousse or whatever it is every day. It may add a fine coating to your skin making it glow however it damages your skin to a large extent. Keep these beauty products for special occasions, the rest of the time, tone and moisturize, use sunscreen and let your skin breathe.  

Tip 2: Face cleansing  
To maintain healthy skin you need to cleanse even if you are too tired after a long party or working late, cleanse all dirt of the day and makeup from your skin. Your face needs to be cleared of all the chemicals in the makeup and impurities from air pollution. Your makeup acts as a mask on your skin keeping your pores clogged.  

Tip 3: Don’t forget the sunscreen  
Sunscreen is a must for your skin. The rays of the sun are harmful beyond thoughts. Skin cancer, premature aging, skin rashes all of these are caused when your skin gets too much exposure to the sun without any protection. You can also use a SPF moisturiser to give you daily protection all year round – yes even on cloudy days!.

However it is a good idea to get a few minutes a day of sun exposure without sunscreen and without burning to top up your vitamin D levels, as in the UK the sun is rarely strong enough to make vitamin D and it is hard to get enough from diet alone. Vitamin D provides the body with many health benefits, do your research to find out more.  

Tip 4: Exfoliating face  
Exfoliate your face at least twice a week. Scrubbing your face will rid your facial skin of all the dead cells that might have clogged your pored leading to acne breakouts, blackheads and whiteheads. Scrubbing your face will also improve your complexion, adds a glow to your skin and also clears your skin of all toxins.  

Tip 5: Moisturise  
Use a good moisturiser to feed your skin. Moisturisers do not add a great deal of moisture by themselves, but they lock in the present moisture and are therefore essential to keep your skin hydrated. Use daily in the morning and before bedtime.  

Tip 6: Eat proper food to get healthy skin  
Food provides life to your skin. Everything you eat in your everyday life contributes to a healthy skin.  This includes drinking plenty of water to stay hydrated.









Strawberries and cream are the perfect combination for the summer

How to serve the perfect strawberries and cream:

Scientists have calculated a formula for the perfect serving of strawberries and cream for maximum enjoyment. And fans of the desert will be delighted to learn that they must be eaten in under three minutes - two minutes and 50 seconds, to be precise - for optimum taste. 

Experts also found the ideal strawberries-to-cream weight ratio is 70:30 - or one tablespoon of single cream per two fresh medium-sized strawberries.

Other season fruit and vegetables this month;

artichoke, aubergine, beetroot, broad beans, broccoli, carrots, chillies, courgettes, fennel, french beans, garlic, jersey royal new potatoes, kohlrabi, lettuce & salad leaves, mangetout, new potatoes, onions, pak choi, peas, radishes, rocket, runner beans, samphire, spinach, spring onions, tomatoes, turnips, watercress, wild nettlesapricots, bilberries, blueberries, cherries, gooseberries, greengages, kiwi fruit, melons, peaches, strawberries

basil, chervil, chives, coriander, dill, elderflowers, oregano, mint, nasturtium, parsley (curly), parsley (flat-leafed), rosemary, sage, sorrel, tarragon, thyme

lamb, rabbit, wood pigeon

cod, coley, crab, dover sole, haddock, halibut, herring, langoustine, mackerel, plaice, pollack, prawns, salmon, sardines, scallops (queen), sea bream, sea trout, shrimp, squid, whelks, whitebait


Narrow Boat Surveys 

There are three different types of surveys that a narrowboat can undergo and we strongly advise if you are going to buy a narrow boat that you always have a survey carried out first. More details can be found here

















































July, 2017 Daily Holidays, Special and Wacky Days:

What’s special about July?  
1 Jul International Joke Day,  2 Jul I Forgot Day, 2 Jul World UFO Day, 3 Jul Compliment Your Mirror Day, 4 Jul   Sidewalk Egg Frying Day, 5 Jul Workaholics Day, 6 Jul World Kissing Day, 7 Jul Tell the Truth Day, 8 Jul Video Games Day, 8 Jul Math 2.0 Day,  9 Jul Sugar Cookie Day, 10 Jul Teddy Bears' Picnic Day, 10 Jul Clerihew Day, 11 Jul Cheer Up the Lonely Day, 12 Jul Simplicity Day, 13 Jul Embrace Your Geekness Day, 14 Jul Pandemonium Day, 15 Jul Gummi Worm Day, 16 Jul Corn Fritters Day, 17 Jul Yellow Pig Day, 18 Jul Caviar Day, 19 Jul  Stick Out Your Tongue Day, 20 Jul Space Exploration Day, 21 Jul Junk Food Day, 22 Jul Pi Approximation Day, 23 Jul Ice Cream Day, 24 Jul Cousins Day, 25 Jul Culinarians Day, 26 Jul Uncle and Aunt Day, 27 Jul Take your Pants for a Walk Day, 28 Jul Milk Chocolate Day, 29 Jul Lasagna Day, 30 Jul National Cheesecake Day.

There's lots of fun food related celebrations to enjoy during July!


The Birmingham Black Country Half Marathon

1st July 2017, 8am to 5pm 
Canal Dock, Wolverhampton

Head along to the Birmingham Black Country Marathon.

Wildflower & Meadow ID workshop

2nd July 2017, 2pm to 4pm 
Melbourne Arm, Melbourne

Join staff from Natural England for a guided walk along the canal and through the wildflower rich meadows of the Melbourne and Thornton Ings Site of Special Scientific Interest.        

Pirates at Anderton

8th July 2017 to 9th July 2017 

Anderton Boat Lift

Come along for a weekend of family fun, and enjoy the Pirates at Anderton.        

Bugsworth Basin Fun Day

8th July 2017, 9am to 5pm 

Bugsworth Basin

Head along to Bugsworth Basin and enjoy a day of fun for all the family.        

Dragonfly walk along the Pocklington Canal
22nd July 2017, 10:30am to 12:30pm 

Join the Yorkshire Dragonfly Group for a guided walk along the Pocklington Canal.            

Wild West Anderton

29th July 2017 to 30th July 2017 

Anderton Boat Lift

Head to the Anderton Boat Lift for the annual Wild West at Anderton event


Fri Jun 2, 2017 at 7:17pm



Interesting fact; June is still the most popular month to get married, followed by August, July, May, and September. The goddess Juno was the protector of women in all aspects of life, but especially in marriage and childbearing, so a wedding in Juno's month was considered most auspicious.

Now let's be honest planning a wedding is no easy task! When it comes to your big day, it’s very important that you sit down with your fiancé and decide what it is you BOTH want from your wedding day. Now is also the time you should have a very honest discussion about your budget and the kind of things that you will and won’t compromise on.

The first thing you should plan is the venue, with so many options available this can be quite a daunting task. It is however one of the most important decisions you will make relating to your big day, so have a good think as to what you want from your venue.

Here are a few tips on how to make the task of finding the perfect place to say “I do”. 

  • Start with working out what size venue you need. Make a list of everyone attending and decide whether you want everyone to come for the full day and evening or just to have close friends and family for the full occasion and more guest just attending the evening do.

  • Another factor in deciding your venue is going to be your budget. Once you’ve confirmed a guest list, most venues will be able to give you a price per-guest so you will then be able to calculate how much you can afford per person.

  •  Where do you want to get married? Near where you grew up or somewhere that has a special meaning for you both? Once the location has been decided this will help narrow down the actual venues in this area.

  • Next think about what you want your venue to provide. If you’re planning on a marquee wedding and arranging catering and entertainment separately, you might just need a picturesque field that’s near the registry office or church where you’re getting married. Alternatively, you might want somewhere that will provide the full package - ceremony, wedding breakfast, wedding planner and overnight accommodation for guests. 

  • If you’re the sort of person who loves organising everything and has the time to dedicate to do the planning, you might want to choose a venue where you need to arrange things like; the caterers, DJ, transport and decorations yourself.
    If you’re a busy bride with not alot of time to give to your wedding planning, you might prefer to have all these decisions made for you by the venue organisers.

  • Next for the fun bit – finding somewhere that fits in with your theme. Whether it’s a fairytale wedding in a castle, a rustic country affair on a farm, a BBQ on a hot beach or a calm and tranquil riverside affair, there will be a venue that matches your theme. 

  •  Once you have a short list of venues ideally 3 or 4, its time to decide upon the right one for you. If your venue is catering the wedding, make sure you’re happy with the menu they’re providing. Most will offer tasting sessions and don’t be afraid to tell them if there’s something you don’t like or another dish you’d prefer.

    If you’re planning on bringing your own caterers to the venue, check what their policy is on corkage (extra charge for opening bottles of wine). It can add a substantial amount to your budget and you might be better off buying cases from them directly.

  • Often it’s the little things that make a venue stand out from the others – the amazing view out of the windows, the wedding planner who gets exactly what you want, the fact that there’s no restriction on when the DJ has to stop or an incredible backdrop for photos. It’s your big day so don’t be surprised if it’s something small and sentimental that swings it for you.


If you are planning a canal side setting, then you may want to take a look at these great canal themed wedding venues we have put together for you. 

Fantastic canal based venues for your perfect day; 

Anderton Boat Lift 

Romantics wanting to tie the knot somewhere unusual will be pleased to hear that the Anderton Boat Lift has been granted a venue licence for civil marriage ceremonies. Issued by the Superintendent Registrar for Cheshire West and Chester Council, the licence allows couples to formalise their relationship at the ‘cathedral of the canals’, built by Edwin Clark in 1875 to lift cargo boats 50 feet from the River Weaver to the Trent & Mersey Canal. Duty manager Graham Wood said: “We’re really excited about the future. Providing couples say the legal declaration in either the Lift View Function Room or the Lower Floor Exhibition Hall, they can get married on The Edwin Clark trip boat while going through the lift, or even on top of the lift.”

The Bond Company

Steeped in Birmingham’s rich canal heritage, just a short walk from the city centre, you will find The Bond Company. With a majestic front and  fine cobbled entrance, the collection of Victorian buildings and planted courtyards overlook the Grand Union Canal.

This idyllic oasis within the centre of Birmingham is recommended by The Birmingham Mail as one of the “Top 5 Wedding Venues in Birmingham” and would provide a stunning backdrop to your wedding day.  

Canal Boat Cruises

If you are looking for the ultimate venue for your next private event, then a celebration aboard Romance is the perfect choice. Cruising in the open countryside creates the perfect backdrop for your guests to have a wonderful and memorable time. Our experienced event organisers will work closely with you to ensure that your expectations for this big event are exceeded.


Practice these healthy eating tips; 

  • Monitor calories. 
  •  Eat a well-balanced diet. 
  •  Go for lean protein sources. 
  •  Make half of your meals a fruit or vegetable. 
  •  Make your grain choices whole grain. 
  •  Limit junk foods and processed foods. 
  •  Drink adequate amounts of water.
  •  Take vitamin and mineral supplements. 

June's exercise idea - Team training.Training with a friend/ partner can help keep you motivated and reach your goals. 

There is an unlimited list of sports you can do with a partner, from power walking to racket sports and everything in between. 

The important thing to do when starting to workout together is to choose a sport that you are both going to enjoy and keep doing.
*Always seek your doctors advice before starting any new life style change. 









Seasonal foods available in June;

artichoke, asparagus, aubergine, beetroot, broad beans, broccoli, carrots, chillies, courgettes, fennel, french beans, garlic, jersey royal new potatoes, kohlrabi, lettuce & salad leaves, mangetout, new potatoes, onions, pak choi, peas, radishes, rocket, runner beans, samphire, spinach, spring onions, tomatoes, turnips, watercress, wild nettles

apricots, bilberries, blueberries, cherries, gooseberries, greengages, kiwi fruit, peaches, strawberries

basil , chervil, chives, coriander, dill, elderflowers, oregano, mint, nasturtium, parsley (curly), parsley (flat-leafed), rosemary, sage, sorrel, tarragon, thyme

lamb, wood pigeon

cod, coley, crab, haddock, halibut, herring, langoustine, plaice, pollack, prawns, salmon, sardines, scallops (queen), sea bream, sea trout, shrimp, squid, whelks, whitebait

Ingredients fit for a king!


Up-cycle your old boat parts, they don't have to end up in landfill...

The Green Blue, the environmental project of the RYA and British Marine, gets to see quite a few ideas when out and about on site visits to clubs, marinas and centres.

Help safe the enviroment and reduce your carbon foot print by recycling your old boat parts

Remember your scrap could be someone else’s treasure! Find out more here





































June, 2017 Daily Holidays, Special and Wacky Days:

1 Say Something Nice Day, 2 Leave the Office Early Day, 2 National Doughnut Day, 3 Repeat Day, 4 Hug Your Cat Day, 6 Drive-In Movie Day, 7 VCR Day, 8 Best Friends Day, 9 Donald Duck Day, 10 Iced Tea Day, 11 Corn on the Cob Day, 12 Red Rose Day, 13 Sewing Machine Day, 14 Bourbon Day, 15 Nature Photography Day, 16 Bloomsday,17 World Juggling Day,17 Eat Your Vegetables Day (should be easy with all the seasonal veggies available)
, 18 International Picnic Day, 18 International Panic Day, 19 Sauntering Day, 21 Daylight Appreciation Day, 22 Onion Ring Day, 23 Take Your Dog to Work Day, 23 Typewriter Day, 24 Swim a Lap Day, 25 Please Take my Children to Work Day, 26 Chocolate Pudding Day, 28 Tau Day, 29 Camera Day, 30 Meteor Watch Day 

Looks like we are going to be VERY busy!


Stilling the flow exhibition

2nd June 2017 to 2nd July 2017
Come along to the National Waterways Museum and view artist, lecturer and boater, Jim Cooke's photography exhibition.      

Leicester Riverside Festival
3rd June 2017 to 4th June 2017 

Head to the 20th anniversary of the Leicester Riverside Festival this year.        

Long Eaton Canal Festival

3rd June 2017, 10am to 4th June 2017, 4pm 

Trent Lock
Come along to Long Eaton Canal Festival for a weekend of family fun.        

Anderton In Bloom

10th June 2017 to 11th June 2017 

Head along to the Anderton Boat lift for the Anderton In Bloom flower festival.        

Wildflower & Meadow ID workshop

10th June 2017, 2pm to 4pm 

Join staff from Natural England for a guided walk along the canal and through the wildflower rich meadows of the Melbourne and Thornton Ings Site of Special Scientific Interest.  

Foxton Locks Festival

17th June 2017, 10am to 18th June 2017, 5pm 

Head along to Foxton Locks over the weekend of the 17th/18th June for the annual Foxton Locks Festival.        

Father's Day breakfast and boat trip

18th June 2017
Treat Dad to something different this Father's Day with a delicious breakfast sandwich followed by a guided boat trip into Britain's longest, highest and deepest tunnel on the Huddersfield Narrow Canal.            

Pennine Explorer Cruise

23rd June 2017 to 9th July 2017 

Come along and join the first Pennine Explorer Cruise from 23 June - 1 July.  

Chester Floating Market

24th June 2017, 10am to 25th June 2017, 5pm 

Head along to Chester Floating Market


Mon May 29, 2017 at 7:23pm

Buying a narrow boat can be a very exciting experience, but it’s also a very big investment and not something that should be rushed into. A bit of planning and research will go along way to helping you choose the perfect boat.  

It’s a bit of a Marmite thing when it comes to choosing a narrow boat there are some styles that you will love and some you will hate.  

Generally speaking there are 3 types of sterns on a narrow boat. You can choose to purchase the traditional, the semi traditional or the cruiser. Then there’s the tug and the Dutch barge, which aren’t as popular, you will see why when we tell you about them later, but they are available.  

Before you even decide what boat stern type you want, you should first consider a few factors such as;  

  • How many people will use the boat?
  • What is more important the outside or the inside space?
  • Do you need a lot of storage space?
  • Is privacy important to you?
  • How often will you use the boat?
  • Are you going to live on the boat full time?
  • What funds do you have available to buy the boat?
  • This will not determine what stern you buy, but you do need to consider where you will moor your new vessel.   

You will see from the different descriptions of each stern type that they are quite different and depending on how you intend to use the boat, one style may suit you better than the others.  

All narrow boats are 6 feet 10 inches wide in general, but they come in different lengths. So the length of the vessel is another area you need to consider. Have a read about the size of a narrow boat here        

It’s worth mentioning that the length of any style boat will be used to base your mooring fees upon. So the longer the boat the more expensive it will be to moor. Also it has to be said the larger the boat generally speaking the more expensive it is to maintain i.e blacking, etc. And lastly some boats over 57ft will not be able to cruise the whole network. Please bear these points in mind when choosing the length of your boat.  

Narrow Boat Styles  

Is a classic and attractive design, which understandably makes it a very popular choice with today’s buyers. The style comes from the old working boats, which were used to move cargo along the canal system back in the day. Due to the large interior area, which was needed to carry goods it now makes it a good choice for people looking for the maximum amount of living space within the boat itself.  

Today the traditional narrow boat makes the ideal choice for long term use i.e. living aboard and long cruises. Due to the large interior the living space makes staying on the boat for long periods of time more comfortable and provides areas of privacy if needed.  

The exterior area on the stern deck however has the smallest amount of space being around 2 – 3 foot in length. Due to the small area outside there is really only room for one person at a time therefore when cruising it isn’t the most sociable of times. If you want more of a sociable space then keep reading the semi trad may be just right for you!  

Trads come in a variety of lengths starting from around 40 feet to 70 feet.  

Semi Traditional AKA Semi Trad  
The semi traditional is the modern day version of the traditional narrow boat. It benefits from having a slightly larger stern deck, which enables more than one person to be in this area at any one time, making the semi trad a more social able boat when cruising along.

The deck also has sides which can have benches fitted to provide additional seating and outdoor storage.  

Another advantage of the semi trad is that a pram hood can be fitted in the bad weather giving some protection when you are cruising and provides a additional covered storage area for boots and other equipment that you may not want to keep in the boat. The cover can be removed during the warmer months if you wish.   This style is a popular choice for families and people with dogs.  

The cruiser is the perfect choice for those of you that want the best cruising experience and are not so worried about the internal space on offer. The open plan deck is as a rule 2mts or longer in size than the other styles and also has a safety rail around the edge.

You can buy covers that you can then simply attach to the rails to enclose the deck area making it safer for children and pets.  

Its main feature is it’s long front deck, which is useful if you want more outside space. Some believe that these boats are a bit of a waste of space, as you can’t live on your deck especially in the UK!  

Dutch Barge  
The ‘normal sized’ Dutch Barges style comes from the Netherlands and were originally used to carry cargo much like our traditional narrow boats. They are typically 15m to 40m in width; this makes them too wide to fit on most of the UK Inland Waterways. Fine if you don’t plan to go anywhere but no good if you want to travel. However you can purchase a Dutch barge style narrow boat the same width as a narrow boat, (6ft 10”) but has the look of a Dutch barge.  

The Mystery Boat  

It’s not a narrow boat, but it can be used on the UK canal system and is very similar to a narrow boat but it’s just a bit bigger. What is it? It’s a wide beam! Find out more about wide beams in this article.    

Hopefully this article has given you an insight into the different sterns available and if you would like to discuss this topic in more detail please do feel free to visit us at the marina. Our friendly and knowledgeable team are here to help.  

Mon May 15, 2017 at 10:30am

1. Take A Free Boat Trip

The London Narrow Boat Project are offering free 30 minute boat trips every day of the Crick boat show. The first trip starts at 10.10am and each trip lasts 30 minutes taking you along the Grand Union Canal.

You can book your trip at the Trip Boats marquee on the Quayside when you arrive at the show. A small donation to the project would be appreciated. 

2. Seminars 

Suitable for all as no one ever knows all there is to know about boating or owning a boat. 

A series of talks will be hosted by Mark Langley; Technical Editor of Waterways World which will be invaluable to new and experienced boaters.

Some topics that will be covered include;

• Things to consider when buying or selling
• How to ensure your boat is well maintained to avoid issues

At the end of each topic there will be an open question and answer session

3 Enjoy the music entertainment

Headline acts for 2017. Following highly-popular performances at Crick, as well as success from their own widely toured shows, Sunday 28 May sees the return of well-loved artists, Fleetwood Bac and Murphy’s Marbles, for Crick Favourites Night. Performances are held in the Wheatsheaf Bar Marquee so whatever weather we get you arcan enjoy the super music undisturbed.

All evening entertainment is included in the price of your day/weekend ticket.

4 Visit The Canal & River Trust marquee

The Canal & River Trust is now one of the UK's biggest charities. It was set up to care for the 2,000 miles of canal networks in England and Wales. Within the Canal & River Trust Marquee a number of historic and wildlife displays and activities will be taking place.

5 Climb aboard one of 40 display boats

This is a great opportunity for newbies to get aboard a variety of different boats, to get a feel of what potentially could be the perfect boat for them.

Our marina at Whilton Locks is just 10 minutes away from the Crick Boat Show by road. So if you fancy taking a look at any of the boats we are selling you are more than welcome to come to our marina to look. We will be open all Bank Holiday weekend from 9am to 6pm every day. There's no need to make an appointment just pop down and the staff at the marina will hand you the keys and be on hand if you need any help.

6 A chance to buy and win

With many of the biggest and best brokerage companies exhibiting at the Crick Boat show, buyers are spoilt for choice when it comes to looking to buy a narrowboat. Many companies offer show deals,so look out for these specials and grab yourself a bargain over the Bank Holiday weekend.  

We will be exhibiting at the show and also running a photo competition, so have your camera ready and send us your shots of anything waterways related to be in with a chance to win one of our wonderful prizes. For details of how to enter our Crick Boat Show photography competition see our Crick Boat Show page.


7. Shopping heaven

If you're a boat owner or just a dreamer, the Crick Show is the ideal place to flex your credit card. With a large selection of stalls you will be spoilt for choice with gadgets, accessories, clothes and interesting finds all for the taking. You won't want to forget your shopping bags!

8 FREE Day out for the kids

The Crick Boat show is very much a family day out so bring along your kids there’s plenty for them to do and entry is free for children under 16 years old all weekend.

9 Be a VIP! The Waterways World VIP marquee

The Waterways World VIP marquee is the home of our Roses and Castles Vintage Tea room. 

The Tea room is a quiet space to relax and enjoy savories, homemade cakes and a selection of teas and coffees. Entry to the VIP Marquee is exclusively for wearers of the following wristbands:

  • VIP*
  • Exhibitor
  • Show Volunteer.  

*To have a VIP wristband you need to be one of the following:  

  • A subscriber to Waterways World magazine (to subscribe, visit As a subscriber you also receive 10% discount off advance ticket prices)
  • An IWA member (you should show proof of membership at the marquee entrance)
  • Visitors who have booked a weekend camping package.  

10 Vote for your favourite boat at the show

The Favourite Boat of Show competition is a tradition of Crick. If you’re taking a look at the exhibitor's boats in the marina or in the Show Village this year, make sure you pick up a Favourite Boat of Show slip to vote for your own favourite from the Shawbrook Finance Ltd stand on the Quayside (Q35). The boat with the most votes from visitors receives the award of Favourite Boat of Show, and the result is announced mid-afternoon on Monday. Everyone who votes is entered into a prize draw to win a £100 Marks & Spencer voucher and Waterways World subscription. The winning exhibitor receives a trophy and a bottle of champagne.

The Crick Boat Show 2017 will be open from 10am till 6pm every day except Monday 29 May, when it closes at 5pm.

Evening entertainment runs from 7.30pm to 11.30pm.

Ticket Price:  

  • £12 per adult if booked in advance, £15 on the day. All children aged 16 and under go free. Senior citizens and concessions are £10.80 in advance and £13.50 if bought on the day.  
  • Three day tickets are also available for £23.20 per adultin advance, or £29 on the day. Senior citizens and concessions are priced at £20.80 in advance, £26 on the day. 

Get your Crick Boat Show tickets here

Do come and visit our stand to say hello we'd love to see you!

Tue May 2, 2017 at 12:27pm



If the answer is YES then you will want to grab a coffee, find a quiet place to sit and continue reading this article! There are over 35,000 boat owners in the UK with the numbers growing year on year. There are so many people attracted to this life style and many more wanting to be part of it, are you about ready to jump onboard?




Things you should know before you part with your cash

Buying and maintaining a narrowboat is not something that should be rushed into. You may be full of enthusiasm and raring to get onboard, but first lets look at whats involved and plan ahead. Planning is a key part to getting the right boat and keeping the buying process as stress free as possible.

Set a budget

The good news is there a variety of differently priced narrow boats on the market, anything from a few thousand pounds up to over a hundred thousand pounds. So work out what your budget is and stick to it. Remember you will have other costs to pay once you become the proud owner of your new vessel, so it’s better in the long run to have some funds set aside to pay for maintenance, insurance, mooring fees, ongoing running cots and unforeseen problems.  

Know how you will use it

How often and how many people will be on board are considerations you should make before buying a boat. If you intend to live aboard, then a larger vessel will more than likely better suit your needs. Space is rather limited within a narrow boat, so the more storage space and living space on board you have, will make living aboard for more than just a few weeks much easier.  

Know your sterns and lengths

Having a good understanding about narrow boats in general will help immensely when it comes to buying your own boat. As a rule all narrow boats are the same width but are available in different lengths and styles. More advise on this can be found here about narrow boat size.  

Research the running costs

Some expenses you will need to consider when owning a narrowboat are; moorings, licenses, insurance, maintenance, fuel costs, blacking and other day-to-day stuff.

Its rather difficult to give an example of expenses that are incurred when owning a narrow boat, as there are many different variants that make it impossible to give you a definitive cost. However it's a good idea to ask other boaters what costs they incur for their boat, based on the time they spend aboard and the boat type.  


Residential moorings can be hard to find, so it is always advisable to look into this before buying a narrow boat. Non-residential moorings are easier to come across and some marina will offer you a mooring when buying a boat from them.

Sort out the admin

Just like owning a car or house you need the relevant paper work in place, which for a narrow boat will include; insurance documents, boat safety certificate and ownership papers. Make sure you have all these in place when you buy. Always ask for any relevant paper work to help you better understand the boat. Ideally you should at least have a boat manual.  

Don’t buy until you have a survey

Would you buy a house without a survey? I’m guessing unless you are a builder or in the industry the answer is going to be No!  So buying a second hand narrowboat without a survey isn’t the smartest move either, unless you really know what you are doing. The survey is there to protect the buyer, so that you will know of any potential problems before buying the boat.  

Use a Brokerage Company

Using a good brokerage company has so many benefits. So let’s just look at a few ways a brokerage company can help you – lots of experience and knowledge, free advice, a variety of boats all in one location, will negotiate on your behalf, and so much more.  

For more help and advice give us a call on 01327 842577 or contact us by email


Skipping into May!

We may have plenty of ropes lying around our boats which help us keep our boats in place, but how about using a rope to get yourself fit?

Skipping is a simple and effective method to improve your fitness. But be warned - you need to be patient, it's not as easy as it looks and it will take a little time and practice to become a skipping pro.

According to the British Rope Skipping Association, 10 minutes of skipping can have the same health benefits as a 45-minute run.

Skipping is a full body workout which uses your abdominals to stabilise the body, legs for jumping, shoulders and arms for turning the rope.

You can burn more than 200 calories in two, 10-minute sessions each day (that's 1,000 calories a week)!

*Always seek your doctors advice before starting any new life style change.


  • Turn off your devices and connect with mother nature. Take long walks, go for a long cruise or fall asleep in the shade of a tree. Not only will you relax and recharge, you’ll give your immune system a boost.
  • Now it's getting warmer you can swap your hot porridge breakfast for soaked overnight oats, add some seasonal fruit for some extra scrummy taste.
  • Get outside earlier in the day. It's been cold and dark in the winter months, so it’s important to take advantage of the warmer weather and longer days now the summer is on it's way. 









Seasonal Foods for May

asparagus, broccoli, carrots, jersey royal new potatoes, lettuce & salad leaves, new potatoes, peas, radishes, rocket, samphire, spinach, spring onions, watercress, wild nettles

Wild Nettles
Get your gloves on to forage for wild plants like nettles - once cooked they have a spinach or cabbage flavour

Wild Nettle Soup
1 tbsp olive oil, plus extra for drizzling1 onion, chopped1 carrot, diced1 leek, washed and finely sliced1 large floury potato (Maris Piper or similar), thinly sliced 1l vegetable stock 400g stinging or dead nettles, washed, leaves picked 50g butter, diced 50ml double cream

Heat the oil in a large saucepan over a medium heat. Add the onion, carrot, leek and potato, and cook for 10 mins until the vegetables start to soften. Add the stock and cook for a further 10-15 mins until the potato is soft. Add the nettle leaves, simmer for 1 min to wilt, then blend the soup. Season to taste, then stir in the butter and cream. Serve the soup drizzled with extra oil and scattered with dead nettle flowers, if you have them.

bananas, kiwi frui, rhubarb

basil, chervil, chives, coriander, dill, oregano, mint, nasturtium, parsley (curly), rosemary, sage, sorrel, tarragon
lamb, wood pigeon

cod, coley, crab, haddock, langoustine, plaice, prawns, salmon, sardines, sea trout, shrimp, whelks, whitebait


Visit a brokerage company to help you to buy or sell a narrow boat.

Feel free to visit us Monday - Sunday no appointment necessary.

We have a large selection of boats for sale with price tags to suit most budgets.










































May, 2017 Daily Holidays, Special and Wacky Days:

What’s special about May?  

1 May Monday - Batman Day, 4 May Thursday - Star Wars Day, 5 May Friday - No Pants Day, 5 May Friday - Space Day, 6 May Saturday -Herb Day, 6 May Saturday -Free Comic Book Day, 6 May Saturday - Beverage Day 9 May Tuesday -Europe Day, 9 May Tuesday - Lost Sock Memorial Day, 10 May Wednesday - National School Nurse Day, 10  Up Your Room Day, 11 May Thursday -Twilight Zone Day, 11 May Thursday - Eat What You Want Day, 12 May Friday Limerick Day, 13 May Saturday -Frog Jumping Day, 14 May Sunday -Dance Like a Chicken Day, 15 May Monday Chocolate Chip Day, 17 May Wednesday Pack Rat , May Thursday -No Dirty Dishes Day, 19 May Friday -Pizza Party Day, 19 May Friday - May Ray Day, 20 May SaturdayBe a Millionaire Day, 21 May Sunday Talk Like Yoda Day, 22 May Monday, Buy a Musical Instrument Day, 24 May Wednesday Scavenger Hunt Day, 25 May Thursday Sing Out Day, 25 May Thursday Towel Day, 26 May Friday World Lindy Hop Day, 27 May Saturday Sun Screen Day, 28 May Sunday Hamburger Day, 29 May Monday Put a Pillow on Your Fridge Day, 30 May Tuesday My Bucket's Got a Hole Day, 31 May Wednesday Macaroon Day

Will you be dancing around the May Pole on May Day?


Montgomery Canal Triathlon 6th May 2017, 8:30am to 5pm Severn Way, NewtonHead along to the Montgomery Canal Triathlon

Roses and Castles Weekend Painting Course 6th May 2017, 9:30am to 7th May 2017, 4:30pm Stoke BruerneAn Introduction to traditional painting techniques.

Stourbridge model railway exhibition 6th May 2017, 10am to 7th May 2017, 4:30pm Bonded WarehouseHead along to the Stourbridge model railway exhibition at the Bonded Warehouse.

Alarum Theatre presents: Idle women of the wartime waterways 6th May 2017, 2pm to 21st May 2017, 8:30pm Various locations across Milton KeynesThis May, head along to the Alarum Theatre's performance of Idle women of the wartime waterways.

Geophysics workshop 7th May 2017, 10am to 3pm Canal Head, PocklingtonJoin archaeologist Jon Kenny to learn about geophysics, and then help carry out the surveying at Canal Head ahead of the dig taking place later in the year.

Vikings at Anderton 13th May 2017 to 14th May 2017 Anderton Boat LiftHead to the Anderton Boat lift for a special 'Vikings at Anderton' event.

Freshwater wildlife of the Pocklington Canal 13th May 2017, 10am to 4pm Pocklington CanalHead along to this event on the Pocklington Canal where you can find out more about the freshwater wildlife in the canal.

Rickmansworth Festival 20th May 2017, 10:30am to 21st May 2017, 10:30pm Bewtween Batchwortha nd Stockers LockHead along to the Rickmansworth Festival

Willow weaving workshop - bowl making (PCAS Spring Fete) 21st May 2017, 10am to 3pm Melbourne Marina, MelbourneHead along to a workshop where you will learn how to weave using rushes from the canal itself.

Stoke Bruerne Floating Market 27th May 2017, 10am to 29th May 2017, 5pm Stoke BruerneHead along to the Stoke Bruerne Floating Market this May.

Crick Boat Show 2017 27th May 2017, 10am to 29th May 2017, 6pm Crick Marina. Head along to this years Crick Boat Show for a weekend of family fun. And we will be there too!


Tue Apr 18, 2017 at 10:52am

Owning a narrow boat as a rule brings mainly, enjoyment and a lot of fun. But it also can have its down side. Things can, and do sometimes do go wrong just from time to time, but armed with some knowledge and a bit of experience you can overcome most problems yourself without too much trouble and expense.

The Problem 

One problem you may encounter is “Man Overboard” let’s look into this situation, highlight possible causes, and give you solutions and provide you with knowledge so it can be prevented.

The Possible Causes

More than likely this situation is an accident caused by a lack of attention, slipping on wet decks, loss of balance through hitting an obstruction or tripping over. However people messing about and crew members playfully pushing each other is also another cause, so at all times be aware of your surroundings and act sensibly.

The Solutions

General common sense and being prepared is the key to everyone staying safe on board. If this situation does arise the first thing to do is NOT to panic, don’t jump in and don’t let others jump in either. Why? The water is very cold even in summer and you will only be adding to the problem rather than solving it. Keep sight of the person in the water at all times.

On narrow canals and slow, shallow rivers. Put your engine out of gear. Don’t reverse the boat – the person in the water could be dragged into the propeller. Throw them a line or a lifebelt and tell them to try to stand up, if it’s a canal they might be able to walk out. Steer the boat slowly to the bank and get one of your passengers off to help the person get out of the water.  

On wider or deeper waterways. Throw a lifebuoy to the person in the water. Keep a constant watch to ensure your propeller is well away from them. Stop the propeller immediately by selecting neutral gear if there’s a risk of them getting close to it. If you are on a river you may need to turn so as to approach them slowly going against the stream. Pull them to the side of the boat and help them aboard with a ladder, rope or pole.  

How To Avoid In The Future

  • Keep lifebelt and rope available, and in good working order.
  • Keep the decks clean and clear of ropes and other obstructions
  • Wear non-slip soled shoes.
  • Use a non-slip surface on the gunwales. 
  • In tunnels and bridges keep within the form of the boat.
  • Skipper should make all crew aware of protruding branches where the canal narrows
  • Be prepared. Make sure everyone on the boat knows the drill – and knows where to find the lifeline or lifebelt.
  • If the skipper falls overboard another crew member should know how to stop the propeller and steer the boat.
  • Practice the drill. It's better to learn it before an accident happens.
  • Wear a life jacket at all times, especially in deep or tidal waters
Fri Mar 31, 2017 at 7:09pm



No matter what the weather us boaters are happy come rain or shine, it's basically a case of having to be, as you never know what the weather will throw at you in the UK. But lets keep our fingers crossed that we will indeed get some sunshine this year to compliment our Spring cruises.





The biggest secret of boating is to TAKE YOUR TIME, think and plan your manoeuvres in advance. There’s no rush, don’t be pressurised into making a mistake, relax and enjoy your time cruising. It gets easier the practice you get.  


The maximum permissible and safe speed on canals for a narrow boat is 4 miles per hour. Remember you are in charge of a vessel that has no brakes! If that doesn’t slow you down I’m not sure what will?  
Speeding on the canal system is very much a no no!

A few ripples behind your boat is acceptable, any thing more than that is frowned upon. If you need a measure then; if you are travelling at roughly the pace of a fast walker, you're at your maximum speed!  

Setting off  

When you are ready start your engine. Keep it in neutral allowing it to warm up before you venture off. Then you can ask one of your crew, or if you are on your own untie the mooring ropes. You should keep the ropes tied to the boat once you have released them from the bank; keep them in a coiled and tidy position on the boat ready for use when you want to moor later on.

Unlike in a car, you can’t just pull out from the bank and cruise off, this is because the boat steers from the back. Therefore you need to check the area is clear and there are no boats coming your way, then push the boat away from the bank getting the propeller into the deep water before you can move forward at a gentle cruising speed.  

Cruising in a straight line  

The trick is to aim the boat rather than trying to steer the boat. The boat responds slowly, so when going in a straight line small movements and patience is all that is required.

Aim the boat in the direction you wish to go and follow this direction.  


Just in case you didn’t know, and its totally OK if you didn’t there are no brakes! The only way to stop a narrow boat is to put it into reverse, use the power of the engine to work against the forward motion of the boat. So think and look ahead, start to slow down before you need to stop and don’t over rev your engine.  

When you are ready ease off the throttle, move into neutral and then use reverse gear to slow down and finally come to a halt.            


If you have a crew prepare them in advance to help you out. Make sure everyone knows what he or she is doing.  

Slow down almost to a stop and carry out all your manoeuvres as slowly as possible.   Just before you want to moor, with your boat straight in the water point, the front of the boat towards the bank moving very slowly, then use reverse to stop the boat going forward into the bank. Put the engine in neutral.  

Your crew should then step ashore – not jump. They can either take the mooring ropes with them – making sure there’s plenty of slack and that one end is still fixed to the boat as we advised at the beginning – or you can pass them the ropes once they’re on the towpath.


If we are going to potentially get wet in APRIL then let's get really wet! If you are looking at taking up a new exercise hobby then how about swimming (but not in the canal!) being low impact it is great for those of you who may be new to exercise, or are currently suffering from a injury that doesn't allow you to do your normal regime.

Another great past time that can be enjoyed this time of year and on the canal is kayaking a great choice for families and couples. Nearly two million people already go canoeing in the UK, do you think you will be joining them this year?

7 Great Reasons To Start Kayaking!

1. Keeps you fit
2. Gets you closer to nature
3. Isn't an expensive sport to start
4. You get to meet some wonderful new friends if you join a club
5. It's great fun
6. Perfect for kids and adults alike
7. Makes you feel good

Happy paddling.

Note: You will need to buy a licence before you use the waterways, please find more details about this on the Canal and River Trust website

*Always seek your doctors advice before starting any new life style change.


Spring Clean Your Health And Try Out Our Top 5 Tips;

  • Choose in-season, local produce
  • De-clutter your medicine cabinet
  • Go wheat free for a month
  • Throw away old makeup
  • Replace old workout shoes









April's seasonal ingredients will come and go quickly, so make the most of them before they disappear!              

broccoli, jersey royal new potatoes, lettuce & salad leaves, purple sprouting broccoli, radishes, rocket, samphire, spinach, spring onions, watercress, wild nettles  

bananas kiwi fruit rhubarb  

basil, chives, dill, sorrel               

lamb, wood pigeon  

cockles, crab, langoustine, lobster, plaice, prawns, salmon, sea trout, shrimp, whitebait  

Our recommendation this month is a simple roast lamb dinner with jersey royals & home made mint sauce with spring onions.


             <div>Icons made by <a href="" title="Madebyoliver">Madebyoliver</a> from <a href="" title="Flaticon"></a> is licensed by <a href="" title="Creative Commons BY 3.0" target="_blank">CC 3.0 BY</a></div>
             This month if you are new to narrow boating or even if you have been boating for many years consider treating yourself to a boat handling course. 

A training course from the RYA will teach you new tricks and help you make the most of your time out on the water.

Find out more here
































April, 2017 Daily Holidays, Special and Wacky Days:

What’s special about April?  

1 April Fool's Day 1 International Tatting Day 1 National Walk to Work Day 1st Friday 9 Palm Sunday 10 Passover begins at sundown, lasts 8 days. 14 Good Friday 15 Income taxes due (most years it is due on the 15th) 16 Easter Sunday 17 Patriot's Day Third Monday 22 Earth Day (U.S.) 26 Administrative Professionals Day formerly "Secretaries Day" 27 Take Your Daughter to Work Day 4th Thursday 28 Arbor Day always the last Friday in April

Hope you have a fabulous Easter and the Easter Bunny pays you a visit!


IWA towpath walks, Regents Canal: Little Venice - Camden 2nd April 2017, 2:30pm to 4:30pm Warwick Avenue Tube Station Get your walking boots on as you walk from Little Venice to Camden.  

Everything comes from the egg 3rd April 2017, 10am to 14th May 2017, 5pm Stanton Low Park Head along to Stephen Taylor's 'Everything comes from the egg' exhibition.

Sawley Marina Spring Market 8th April 2017, 10am to 9th April 2017, 4pm Sawley Marina Spring Market Head along to Sawley Marina for their annual spring market, with over 30 stalls booked this one is going to be bigger and better.

Rag Rugging Workshop at the National Waterways Museum Gloucester 9th April 2017, 10:30am to 3:30pm National Waterways Museum Gloucester Interesting in making a traditional narrowboat rag rug with a modern twist?

Easter Treasure Hunt at the Anderton Boat Lift 14th April 2017 to 17th April 2017 Anderton Boat Lift Head to the Anderton Boat Lift for an Easter treasure hunt this April.

Ellesmere Port Easter Boat Gathering - 40 years on 14th April 2017 to 17th April 2017 National Waterways Museum Ellesmere Port We are welcoming the return of colourful boats to the museum this Easter for the Easter Boat Gathering. The festival brings to an end our 40th anniversary celebrations. Heritage and great stories will come alive throughout the weekend with boat trips, musical performances and workshops, behind the scenes tours, crafts and activities for everyone.  

Bollington Easter Floating Market 14th April 2017, 10am to 17th April 2017, 5pm Head along to the Bollington Easter Floating Market for a weekend of family fun.  

Linslade Easter Floating Market 14th April 2017, 10am to 17th April 2017, 5pm This Easter, head along to Linslade Floating Market.

Fishing taster day 21st April 2017, 10am to 3pm Canal Head off the A1079 Come and join coaches from The Angling Trust will show you the basics of this enjoyable hobby.  

National Boat Share Show National Boat Share Show 22nd April 2017, 10am to 23rd April 2017, 4pm Braunston Marina Head along to the National Boat Share Show at Braunston Marina.

National Canal Boating Open Day 23rd April 2017, 11am to 4pm Locations across the England and Wales Come along to the Drifters National Open Day and try canal boating for free at 19 narrowboat hire bases across England and Wales.  

IWA Canalway Cavalcade 29th April 2017, 10am to 1st May 2017, 6pm Little Venice Head along to Little Venice for the IWA Canalway Cavalcade.  

May Bank Holiday Floating Market 29th April 2017, 10am to 1st May 2017, 5pm Head along to the Market Drayton Floating Market  

Berkhamsted May Bank Holiday Floating Market 29th April 2017, 10am to 1st May 2017, 5pm Head along to the Berkhamsted Floating Market for a weekend of family fun.

St Richard's Canal Festival 29th April 2017, 10am to 1st May 2017, 5pm Droitwich Spa, Vines Park Head along to Droitwich Spa to enjoy a canal festival for all the family.


Tue Mar 21, 2017 at 2:15pm

Advice On De Fouling The Propellor On A Narrowboat

There is often a lot of debris in the canals, particularly at this time of the year after winter winds have blown twigs, leaves and general rubbish into the water. This can cause problems with rubbish and debris getting caught up in the propeller of your narrowboat, which in turn can cause stress to your boats engine.

As the propeller on a narrow boat turns during cruising, any leaves or debris that are floating or suspended in the water can collect on the propeller blades and get stuck in a lump on the propeller. As a result, the narrowboat will be loosing drive and this can potentially make the engine overheat, putting a strain on the engine.

If you are experiencing loss of drive and engine stress and you think that you have something caught in your propeller, first of all try putting the boat into reverse and back again a few times, to see if this clears the problem. If this fails, you need to stop the boat and moor up in a safe place. For safety reasons, make sure that you isolate the batteries and take the keys out of the ignition so that no-one can start the engine. Get down into the engine room, remove the weedhatch and have a look down into the propeller to see if you can see anything. You can then try to get the blockage out using your hands. If this doesn't work, you can buy a tool which is called a 'prop mate' this is basically like a knife on a the end of a long metal handle. Push the tool down into the weedhatch and move it around making sure that it's all tightened and sealed down properly. De-isolate the batteries and start the engine, hey presto! Away you go!

Mon Mar 6, 2017 at 12:49pm



With over 2,000 miles of inland waterways to explore in the UK and Northern Ireland are you ready to set sail? Well after the long winter we are sure the answer is YES! but before you cast off onto our liquid highways, you need to make sure your narrow boat is in tip top condition before you embark on your first adventure.




Its time to de-winterise your narrow boat

It doesn't seem two minutes ago we were telling you how to Winterise your narrowboat! But now is the time to put things in reverse and get your boat ready for cruising. Hopefully if you left your boat over the winter months, you took our advice on how to winterise your narrow boat and you are now ready to get her prepared for some amazing cruising.

Simply Follow Our 5 Step Guide:

1. Water. In the winter you would have left the taps open, drained down and turned off the water system. Now is the time to turn off the taps and switch on the water pump. Once the water pump is back on, turn on each tap to let the water run through it. Start with the tap closest to the pump this will help push out any air locks. Check for leaks at each stage. Drain the tank and then refill it before you use the water.

2. Engine. Visually check the engine and surrounding pipework for any obvious leaks or frost damage. Check the oil and coolant levels in the engine. Change the gearbox oil.

3. Electrics. Turn on all electrical appliances and close all opened doors. Ensure the supplies on board are functioning correctly before use.

4. Stern and Prop. Check the stern gland and grease as necessary. Check the weed hatch rubber seal, for debris round the prop and make sure that the prop nut/split pin is secure.

5. Interior. Replace all your soft furnishings and other items that you removed over the winter to stop them getting damp.


Hopefully we will now start to enjoy some better weather and we can embark on some new/old outdoor activities. If you are looking at ways to get fit then have ago at running. It's totally free and can be enjoyed at any time of day with friends, with your dog or on your own. If you haven't run before or for a while then build yourself up to running any sort of distance, don't try and take on long distances in the early stages this will only put you off and potentially you could injury yourself.

Jogging and running tips;

  • Set yourself a goal. Don't set the bar too high to begin with you can always set harder goals in the future
  • Buy a decent pair of trainers!
  • Keep a diary to record your progress
  • Run with a friend to keep you motivated and company
  • Mix it up with interval training and different routes
  • Join a running club to find new running buddies   

*Always seek your doctors advice before starting any new life style change.


To compliment your jogging/running regime make sure you have a balanced diet, stretch before and after your workout and get plenty of rest. 

Tracking devices are a great way to monitor your progress, so if the running becomes part of your regular routine consider purchasing a sports watch. Download some running apps that set training goals these are a great tool for newbies!

Cut down on Alcohol... Quit Smoking... Maintain a Healthy Weight... Stay Positive!









Why bother eating  seasonal food?
Seasonal food is fresher and so tends to be tastier and more nutritious.It's also cheaper so be smart shopper and buy seasonal and locally produced foods.

Seasonal ingredients you will be able to source this month include; Cockles, Oyster, Sardine, Venison, Winkles, lamb, wood pigeon, crab, langoustine, lobster, plaice, prawns, salmon, sea trout, shrimp, whitebait.

Fruit and Veggies include; cauliflower, kale, leeks, purple sprouting broccoli, salsify, spinach, spring onions, swede, wild nettles, bananas, blood oranges, kiwi fruit, lemons, oranges, passion fruit, pineapple and rhubarb

So lets start cooking...


This month we strongly advise you to organise blacking, engine service and any maintenance work needed with your local engineer or marina as soon as possible.

At this time of year you will find that every man and his boat is wanting something doing, so get in there quick and book your boat in!.






























March, 2017 Daily Holidays, Special and Wacky Days:
1 Ash Wednesday - date varies 1 National Pig Day 1 Peanut Butter Lovers' Day. 2 Old Stuff Day 3 Caregiver Appreciation Day 3 Employee Appreciation Day first Friday in March 3 I Want You to be Happy Day 3 If Pets Had Thumbs Day 3 National Anthem Day 3 National Salesperson Day - first Friday in the month 3 Peach Blossom Day. 4 Holy Experiment Day 4 Hug a GI Day 5 Multiple Personality Day. 6 Dentist's Day 6 National Frozen Food Day. 7 National Crown Roast of Pork Day. 8 Be Nasty Day 8 International (Working) Women's Day. 9 Panic Day 9 Popcorn Lover's Day second Thursday. 10 Middle Name Pride Day. 11 Johnny Appleseed Day 11 Worship of Tools Day - (guys, you can relate). 12 Girl Scouts Day 12 Plant a Flower Day. 13 Ear Muff Day 13 Jewel Day. 14 Learn about Butterflies Day 14 National Potato Chip Day 14 National Pi Day- Why today? Because today is 3.14, the value of Pi. 15 Dumbstruck Day 15 Everything You Think is Wrong Day 15 Ides of March. 16 Everything You Do is Right Day 16 Freedom of Information Day 16 Incredible Kid Day - date varies. 17 Corned Beef and Cabbage Day 17 Submarine Day - (the hero sandwich or the boat??) 17 Saint Patrick's Day 18 Goddess of Fertility Day 18 National Quilting Day - third Saturday of month 18 Supreme Sacrifice Day 19 Poultry Day 20 International Earth Day 20 Extraterrestrial Abductions Day 20 Proposal Day 21 Credit Card Reduction Day 21 Fragrance Day 21 National Agriculture Day - date varies 21 Tea for Two Tuesday - third Tuesday in March 22 National Goof Off Day 23 Melba Toast Day 23 National Chip and Dip Day 23 National Puppy Day 23 Near Miss Day 24 National Chocolate Covered Raisin Day 25 Pecan Day 25 Waffle Day 26 Make Up Your Own Holiday Day 26 National Spinach Day 27 National "Joe" Day 28 Something on a Stick Day 28 Weed Appreciation Day 29 National Mom and Pop Business Owners Day 29 Smoke and Mirrors Day 30 National Doctor's Day 30 I am in Control Day (great day to buy a boat!) 30 Take a Walk in the Park Day 31 Bunsen Burner Day 31 National Clam on the Half Shell Day 31 World Backup Day
Looks like we are going to be VERY busy!


IWA towpath walks, Limehouse - Thames – Docklands 5th March 2017, 2:30pm to 4:30pm Westferry DLR (by cycle hire point) Get your walking boots on as you walk from Limehouse to Docklands    

Turnerwood Feeder Lock Open Weekend 11th March 2017, 10am to 12th March 2017, 4pm Turnerwood Feeder Lock Come along to Turnerwood Feeder Lock Open Weekend and see what works are happening around the site.  

Tringford Pumping Station Open Day  11th March 2017, 11am to 4pm Head along to Tringford pumping station Open Day and meet the experts.  

Stourbridge Lock 3 Open Day 12th March 2017, 10am to 4pm Lock 3 on Stourbridge Canal. Come along to Stourbridge Lock 3 Open Day, and take a look at the works happening around the site.    

Afternoon Tea at Standedge Tunnel & Visitor Centre Mother's Day afternoon tea and boat trip 26th March 2017 Standedge Visitor Centre. Treat Mum to something unique this year with a guided boat trip into Britain's longest, highest and deepest canal tunnel followed by a delicious afternoon tea overlooking the Huddersfield Narrow Canal.


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