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

C&RT silence over Flapper site

August 2017 - Plans to replace The Flapper pub on historic Cambrian Wharf in central Birmingham with 80 flats crammed alongside the basin have already outraged 8,500 people who have signed an online petition against the development, as Peter Underwood reports.

While boaters and music fans are clearly appalled at such an insensitive development in a highly sensitive heritage area and concerned about the impact on those who moor their boats in Cambrian Wharf there has been no comment from Canal& River Trust.

Tell us what you think – but you'll have to guess

August 2017 - Already condemned by one vociferous boating group as 'shambolic and misleading' the Canal & River Trust's review of boat licensing isn't impressing other boaters as Allan Richards reports:

Canal & River Trust met with its Navigation Advisory Group (NAG) in late July to consider the results of stage 1 & 2 of the National Review of Boat Licensing. However it refused to allow NAG representatives to see the results of the second stage of the consultation

Should it be the Canal, Docks & River Trust?

July 2017 - Canal & River Trust tells us at every opportunity that it owns 2,000 miles of waterways – but there's more, lots more, as Peter Underwood has been learning.

A combination of history and governmental convenience means that some of the country's famous, historic docks and ports are a key part of the Canal and River Trust's operations, and they play a financial role in keeping the charity afloat.

C&RT's Annual Report: Spin v facts

July 2017 - C&RT's launch of of its Annual Report on 24 July, some 12 weeks after its financial year end, is a drab affair. In previous years we have been treated to web pages filled with multicoloured charts and graphs. This year we have just a monochrome press release which attempts to deflect from the Trust's failures by concentrating on supposed successes over its first five years. Allan Richards unspins a small sample of the more fanciful claims by reference to C&RT's Annual Report, previous Annual Reports and published board papers.

The blame game backfires

July 2017 - A tendency for the Canal & River Trust to blame anything other than poor maintenance for stoppages on the canal system has not gone unnoticed by boaters, as Peter Underwood reports.

A stoppage notice from C&RT that says: “We are sorry but the lock gates are broken because we didn't get around to doing essential maintenance work, even though we knew about the problem” would be an amazing piece of honesty.

Instead stoppages are blamed on 'vandalism', 'boat collision' or 'water resources' – anything but the failure to make repairs when needed.

Has peace broken out on the Lanky?

July 2017 - In one of the few pieces of positive news to come from the Lancaster Canal it seems the Canal & River Trust has agreed to Colin Ogden and his fast-growing Owd Lanky Boaters Group adopting an abandoned lock flight, Peter Underwood reports.

The Trust seems to have acknowledged that Colin Ogden's Owd Lanky Boaters Group is an active and effective restoration body on the Lancaster Canal by agreeing it can adopt the first lock flight of the abandoned Northern Reaches at Tewitfield and Colin has praised the Trust's swift response.

Can Bolton get back it's town centre canal?

July 2017 - Plans for a multi-million pound development in Bolton have brought the founder of the Manchester Bolton and Bury Canal Society into conflict with its current chair – as Peter Underwood reports.

Steven Parker, who founded the Manchester, Bolton and Bury Canal Society in 1987, says that plans to regenerate Church Wharf could be fatal to his dream of seeing the canal restored to its former glory, putting an end to any hopes of bringing a canal back to Bolton town centre.

C&RT removes Pontcysyllte photos

July 2017 - Canal & River Trust's fifth birthday has come and gone with no fanfare. Even C&RT's marketing department, never short of a spurious story on such occasions, has remained silent. No self congratulation or stories with titles such as 'Our achievements - year by year'. Just silence. Allan Richards has been reviewing the major launch story from five years ago.

Property developers face fight from boaters and rockers over canal pub site

July 2017 - Developers planning to put no fewer than 80 flats on a canalside site in central Birmingham may find themselves up against a coalition of boaters and music fans, Peter Underwood reports.

Whitehorse Estates Ltd and Baskerville Wharf, a Private Limited Partnership, want to knock down the Flapper Pub, alongside Cambrian Wharf and replace it with a block of flats. They own the lease on the land from Birmingham City Council and are currently attempting to persuade local residents to back their plans by staging an exhibition of their planning proposal.

River Lea boaters to lose out to rowing clubs?

July 2017 - A Canal & River Trust London Mooring Ranger is proposing new restrictions that may see current mooring spaces removed on the lower part of the River Lea, writes Alec Wood.

The C&RT official has written a proposal outlining the removal of boats in places where the navigation is less than 18 metres (nearly 60 ft).

C&RT claims this is to aid rowers from two rowing clubs on the River Lea, although the current proposal would only affect the river near the Lea Rowing Club who use the stretch between Old Ford Lock in Hackney Wick and Tottenham Hale Lock.


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