Here are feature articles by London Boaters. Members may comment on matters presented here.

C&RT spent less on maintenance last year

September 2017 - With boaters questioning on social media why C&RT spent £900,000 less on dredging last year and the upcoming Annual Meeting, Allan Richards takes a look at what the last four Annual Reports tell us about the Trust's spend on maintenance.

Despite a substantial growth in income and and the value of its investments, the Trust's yearly spending on waterways maintenance is not increasing. Indeed, it actually spent £1m less less on directly maintaining its waterways in 2015/16 than in the previous year.

When is a mooring not a mooring?

August 2017 - Bank works and dredging are always a welcome sight, especially on a notoriously shallow canal like the Ashby, but as boater Gareth Haines discovered all is not quite what it first appears.

Those who have cruised the Ashby will appreciate that it is shallow in places and also there is a general difficulty mooring away from recognised wharves due to the condition of the banks.

IWA launches attack on Environment Agency

August 2017 - Whilst it is rare to the point of vanishing to see the Inland Waterways Association criticise the Canal & River Trust it has no similar compunction about attacking the Environment Agency, especially over its East Anglian waterways, as Peter Underwood explains.

The IWA has not signed a 'Memorandum of Understanding' with the Environment Agency (EA) and is desperate to see its waterways run by its friends at the C&RT, so it suits the organisation to be able to declare that an 'EA Waterway is Not Fit for Purpose' as it does in its current newsletter.

Desperately needed facilities still being stalled

August 2017 - London's boaters have consistently complained about the lack of facilities, especially rubbish disposal, and Alec Wood asks what has Canal & River Trust has achieved following promises to rectify the situation.

A survey earlier this year by the National Bargee Travellers Association London showed 91 per cent of boaters said facilities in the London area are inadequate and 92 per cent of people of people said there should be more rubbish/bin points.

It's not just about navigation – is it?

August 2017 - Boaters have a view of the Canal & River Trust shaped by using its waterways but the Trust itself is bent on promoting itself on a much wider basis and spends lots of money and effort in portraying itself as much more than a navigation authority. Peter Underwood has been going through the press releases to get a view of how C&RT wants to be seen.

Next weekend is Manchester Pride and C&RT is 'transforming a series of historic lock gates and a bridge crossing over the Rochdale Canal into rainbow colours' - to celebrate.

Marina owner's hatred of continuous cruisers

August 2017 - Its not unusual to see boaters ranting on Facebook but when a marina owner decides to call continuously cruising boaters ' leeches on society' it still comes as something of a shock as Peter Underwood reports.

The post from Steve Wright, the owner of Apperley Bridge Marina on the Leeds and Liverpool Canal at Bradford utilised all the usual epithets used by those who claim continuous cruisers are a problem on the system.

The anglers are coming and royal plant returns

August 2017 - The Canal & River Trust's team of spin doctors churn out largely self-congratulatory press releases every week, you can read them on their website if you are interested. Now and again there is something on interest to boaters and Peter Underwood has been sorting the wheat from the chaff.

If you are one of the hundreds of boaters planning to pass along the Shropshire Union Canal this week – and especially next weekend – C&RT is delighted to tell you that you'll be meeting hundreds of dedicated anglers.

Signs a speciality

August 2017 - If there is one thing most boaters can agree about Canal & River Trust is that it is very good a putting up signs – not necessarily accurate signs or well placed signs - but lots of signs, as Alec Wood reports.

There has been a flurry of C&RT ‘No Mooring’ signs being put up in East and Central London and some speculation that this is the latest C&RT wheeze to reduce boat numbers in the area.

Perhaps this a sign that C&RT feels it can’t rely on persuasion and needs written orders to get boaters to do what they want?

More lock gates than ever? .. not really

August 2017 - One of C&RT's claims when it launched its Annual Report last month was that 2016/17 included its biggest ever programme of lock gate replacements. Allan Richards digs out the facts and comes to the conclusion that, once again, the Trust's claims are not supported by the facts.

Worse still, it appears that the Trust has misled on the number of gates it produces and installs and falls far short of the requirement to replace gates every 25 years.

Colin begins on Lanky lock flight

August 2017 - After three years of lobbying, talking to local landowners and facing hostility from other waterways organisations Colin Ogden and his Owd Lanky Boaters group has started the restoration of the Tewitfield lock flight – and it's with the blessing of the Canal & River Trust – reports Peter Underwood.

Many thought they might never see the day when The Owd Lanky Boaters and the Canal & River Trust teamed up in a community-led restoration of the Tewitfield Locks, near Carnforth in Lancashire.


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