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Showing content with the highest reputation since 08/28/21 in all areas

  1. I've been a member for years now. I've had one callout when the bloke just shrugged and walked away, another who did his best but failed to sort a broken fuel pipe, one who replaced a bust starter, another who sorted out a gearbox problem in half an hour. On top of that, they've contributed £2000 to gearbox repairs and their service engineer had a fallout with the owner of my mooring site which got RCR banned from the farm and for which they never apologised. So a mixed bunch, but as a person of a certain age and inflexibility with no expertise in engines, I wouldn't be without them as a safety net. When disaster strikes, panic sets in and an expert on the end of a phone call is very reassuring. And to know they'll always get you to a boatyard if necessary is also handy. And to slag off a new poster, who in good faith put a useful report on here, as some members have done, is a disgrace and they should be ashamed of themselves. Sadly, it's typical of some, but luckily not the majority.
    15 points
  2. Easy, focus on canals, navigation, boats, wildlife and history like wot you should, forget about wellbeens and cycle racing. "there are 1000's of miles of roads for cycle racing, but only one canal system, and that was built for boats, look after it" Watching a boat going through a lock makes people feel well, jumping out of the way of an abusive cyclist does not.
    14 points
  3. This post cannot be displayed because it is in a forum which requires at least 10 posts to view.
  4. We think it's a good scheme - instead of whining that CRT staff don't understand boaters needs, take them out and show them. We've already taken two CRT staff out since the scheme restarted. Just bear in mind that the staff don't want or need several hours of ranting by grumpy boaters. Show them the bits that could be improved by all means, but also remember the role of the people you take - a payroll administrator is unlikely to be able to arrange much dredging!
    10 points
  5. So I week on from taking on a red Border collie pup from a local farm, he is called Oscar and I have forgotten how much fun and hard work puppies can be! However the rewards are worth it I keep on telling myself when I see his wagging tail and puppy eyes 😊 Now he isn't a replacement he is another dog and with luck he will be the last one I need
    10 points
  6. It's true that bad news spreads quicker than good news, so it's no surprise that horror stories about RCR are regularly heard. My experience is a bit mixed. Until just over a year ago I'd never needed to call them out. Then I had a couple of issues. Both times they came out quickly and got me going again. In both cases their 'fixes' were a bit of a temporary bodge, but they explained what they'd done and made me aware that I'd have to get them properly fixed at some point, which I was happy with. Having had a reasonable experience with them, I had my annual engine service done by them last winter. The guy came on time and was friendly and seemed to be doing a good job. It wasn't until a few days later, that after my engine had been running for a couple of hours, that I looked into my bilge and found around 40 litres of diesel sloshing around down there. I was horrified and called RCR straight away. They sent a different guy out who diagnosed the issue as something not reconnected properly and the diesel was pissing out when the engine was running. He spent a good while getting all the diesel out of my bilges. I queried how I would be recompensed for the lost diesel and he said the office would be in touch. 2 days later they called and were very apologetic and offered a choice of a payment based on the lost diesel or a free year's membership. I took the membership. So they did cock up but they also put things right. That counts for a fair bit in my book.
    9 points
  7. As with lots of companies with a large customer base, the odd person with a bad experience tends to make a lot of noise about it on the net while the satisfied customers just get on with life. So you posting about a good experience helpfully adds some balance. A lot also depends on the competence of the bod who turns up on the day, and RCR must just get on the fone and ring around looking for a local technician when they get a call-out, so you who you get is entirely pot-luck. You hit gold I'd suggest. It could easily have gone the other way.
    9 points
  8. I take everything said above as further confirmation that IWA are failing and have lost their way. We don't need a cut down "Festival of Water", we need a return to campaigning for places at risk. The fact somewhere is at the periphery of the network doesn't make it at risk. Forty years ago Blisworth was hardly on the edges of anywhere, yet leaving The Grand Union truncated was without doubt an option that relied upon heavy campaigning by many different individuals and organisations to ensure that didn't happen. As for suggesting feasibility of returning to campaigning turnouts is "limited by the need for a suitable space (eg council-owned park or common) to hold the event and sufficient moorings for up to 100 boats." Demonstrates a total lack of insight into what campaigning is about or how to do it. One of the main reasons for choosing a particular location was often because lack of Waterways maintenance was endangering its future. As has already been said, lack of attraction in visiting somewhere is reason to not spend money on it. Vicious circle syndrome. Holding an event, it isn't necessary to supply a nicely coiffured park to house beer tents, food stalls a fairground and trade stands. We would warn Waterways at least a year in advance where we wanted the largest number of boats possible to turn up at . It was their problem how they adhered to their responsibilities regarding navigation and access. They didn't want to be seen nationally to have failed with a year's advance notice. We then boated/week-ended for days to get there, and if necessary moored abreast when we arrived (Think of The Braunston Strike of 1923). It all highlighted to everyone how inadequate and non conforming the situation was at that location. I have no proof but I would expect Waterways to have used the outcome to highlight to their paymasters their need for better funding to do their job (?). Whatever, it did achieve some things, saved some about to be lost locations and refocussed Waterways' approach to what it did and how it did it. Through The IWA, boaters had a voice, no power, but a voice which made things happen. Climbing into bed with Waterways only benefitted Waterways. It removed the thorn in its side (us the paying customer) it castrated The IWA and re-educated the new generation of canal enthusiasts into being boaters only interested in going to comfortable, easy to reach boat shows that provide numbered mooring spots, mud free car parking, bouncy castles and beer tents. As a result boaters started to happily accept situations that previous generations had refused to, and indeed had fought against. Increased fees for less service A boating season!? A maintenance season!? Lack of need to be accountable to paying customers. Meaningless/expensive restructuring and shifting of areas of responsibility that only confuse and confuddle (even their own people). If you want a boat show you've got your Braunstons & Crick etc. And jolly rollicking good fun they are but so far as campaigning is concerned, we are the poorer for failing to do any. Sorry for the rant, I didn't intend to, my only intent is to remind (maybe for the first time for many) what was achieved in the past and how.
    9 points
  9. It's also very confusing for the new wave of canal boaters. I imagine a lot would sail past thinking I'd like to turn round but my name's Smith.
    9 points
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  11. This post cannot be displayed because it is in a forum which requires at least 10 posts to view.
  12. Got to say my experience this year is quite the opposite. Too many boats travelling much too slowly. There seems to be a significant number of boaters these days who think being on a canal gives you the right to travel as slowly as you like, regardless. I'm not going to make excuses for the speeding boater described above, but if he had maybe been held up for miles by a boat moving at tickover speed you could perhaps understand his frustration. In similar vein, I too have had "slow down..!" yelled at me more than once this year, and on each occasion I was passing by on tickover at around 2mph. A lot of folk new to the canals don't seem to realise that as canals get shallower it's almost impossible to pass by without disturbing moored craft.
    9 points
  13. This post cannot be displayed because it is in a forum which requires at least 10 posts to view.
  14. This post cannot be displayed because it is in a forum which requires at least 10 posts to view.
  15. A few weeks ago there was a lengthy thread on the issue of inconsiderate boaters running engines after 8pm. I said I would contact CRT to seek their advice on this issue, and to suggest that as it seems to be an increasing problem they might like to put some measures in place to monitor it. I sent the letter on 1st Sept. I received a reply this morning signed by Richard Parry, and I don't doubt that he wrote it. So, first point is, if you bother to write to the Chief Executive direct, the chances are he will read it personally. I must admit this took me by surprise as I fully expected to get a reply from some customer relations person further down the line. So credit to Mr Parry. The relevant parts of the reply are: As you might expect, CRT "take breaches of licence conditions seriously" and will make contact with any boaters who have been reported as being in breach of their conditions. The offender is reminded of their conditions and if the matter persists there are processes whereby CRT will ultimately terminate a licence. Mr Parry advises "...others should not take the matter up with the offending boater themselves and potentially put themselves at risk." Instead they should report the matter via customer services either by phone or through the "contact us" part of the CRT website, giving the location and index number of the boat concerned. Not surprisingly CRT would not want to risk any liability issues by advising boaters to tackle boat licence culprits, though Mr Parry doesn't actually say that. Finally, on the issue of monitoring, Mr Parry states that; "We now have a new customer relationship management system in place and can track all cases to identify if there are repeat complaints. It is helpful to receive any reports of boats running their engines or generators outside permitted hours, so that we can monitor the scale of the problem and respond accordingly". Make of that what you will, but the least we can all do is take Mr Parry at his word and assiduously report future incidents as he suggests. We might then find out what "respond accordingly" actually means.
    8 points
  16. I too was shocked at some of the responses on this thread. We have a new member who's joined to share a good experience she's had in a boating related matter. Disagreeing is one things but comments on here have gone well beyond that. Some members on here would do well to have a hard look at themselves and think about why this forum continues to dwindle. Welcome Glynda, and thanks for your post.
    8 points
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  19. I thought it was refreshing, no false sympathy, no hand wringing just "you live here, you saw the rules" because that's the situation
    8 points
  20. Hi Folks, well as Mark99 has said the planning committee have rejected the planning request. Thanks for all you late letters, there was mention at the meeting that there were about 50 late letters, not quite sure what these were but it all added to the PAC unanimously vote to refuse planning. Not sure if it now has to go to main council, but it is unlikely to be changed there. However this in my opinion is not the end of the line, as the applicant will not now just lie down, so we need to remain very vigilant. --cheers and Thanks Ian Mac
    8 points
  21. This post cannot be displayed because it is in a forum which requires at least 10 posts to view.
  22. This post cannot be displayed because it is in a forum which requires at least 10 posts to view.
  23. I think everything you've said there is utter nonsense. Firstly, if somebody overstays on the Thames they aren't breaking the law, they're breaking EA mooring rules. That may make you care less if they are physically attacked and their boat set alight but you don't speak for society and I'm not sure your certainty about how an insurance company would see it is correct either. But the point is, instead of expressing any concern for the victim, the first reaction of some people seems to be "well they may have deserved it" which I find rather disturbing. Bring mugged & arson of one's property or home is not the proportioate punishment for overstaying. If you are ever the victim of violent crime I hope people on internet forums have a bit more sympathy for you, whatever the circumstances.
    8 points
  24. This post cannot be displayed because it is in a forum which requires at least 10 posts to view.
  25. This post cannot be displayed because it is in a forum which requires at least 10 posts to view.
  26. @Timx: I gave up reading this thread after page two, but I suspect the reason you've had such unpleasant reactions to trying to talk to those running engines out of hours is because of your utterly rubbish attitude.
    8 points
  27. When BWB wished to close the K&A a group harping on about legal niceties stopped that happening because it could be shown that someone had recently made a trip in a kayak, and the law BWB claimed as irrelevant by the passage of time meant they were unable to carry out their intended closure. For better or for worse the law is the law. I personally find the continuous moorers' actions generally unacceptable, but BW/C&RT brought that upon themselves by not nipping it in the bud when they had some chance of success. Tam
    7 points
  28. This post cannot be displayed because it is in a forum which requires at least 10 posts to view.
  29. My choice would be hire from Alvechurch (easy access by train) and visit Birmingham and the BCN. Our 5 year old loves going to Birmingham by boat, and has done since she was a toddler. Plenty to entertain small children, sea life centre, legoland, science museum and plenty more. All next to or easy walking from canal. Then further on you've got Black Country Museum. You could head though Netherton tunnel and moor at a windmill end to let them run around, or carry on and stop at merryhill shopping centre with lots of kids entertainment. Our 5 year old likes to play guess which way to go at the many junctions on the BCN. Add in some loops to surprise them coming back out where you started! Another thing she likes to do in long tunnels is have a "tunnel rave " - some glow sticks and music and she's all set for the tunnels! Easy trip with as much or as little boating as you want, and just turn back after half your trip. No locks heading into Birmingham, then just an easy 3 locks to hop between the old and new mainline whenever you feel like it. Our 5 year old loves locks, but gets bored after 10 or so. She's just strong enough now to push the gates on her own, sometimes with a bit of help to get them started. Life jackets for the kids would be essential when outside on the boat and especially locking, but hire company should provide them. You would also avoid muddy towpaths in and around most of the BCN and it can feel surprisingly rural in places. It can be an interesting mix of urban and rural, new and old. Cruising under the elevated M5 and railway bridge on the old mainline, having just crossed the new mainline is one of my favourites!
    7 points
  30. The nonsense talked about what's in the Act and whether T&Cs are enforceable is generated largely by barrack room lawyers who care more about bending the rules than keeping the waterways a pleasant place to be and use. It's one of the reasons they aren't as nice as they were, or, for that matter, so well maintained. As they get populated more by these jobsworths, people care less and therefore bother less about any deterioration they may cause. As someone once didn't quite say, as soon as someone mentions the Act, I reach for my rifle. It's a bit like mentioning the Nazis in an internet argument - as soon as you do it, you've lost.
    7 points
  31. This post cannot be displayed because it is in a forum which requires at least 10 posts to view.
  32. Shout out to below for replying to my question ‘Llangollen canal help, and handy hints required’. If I’ve missed anybody apologies. Tonka john6767 Quaysider doratheexplorer tree monkey jacko264 Timx We are back after a fabulous week on the Llangollen canal. We were lucky with the weather apart from getting very wet one afternoon as we were in the last of the locks at Grindley Brook and a storm hit. All went smoothly apart from the narrow parts when someone from another boat had gone ahead to check for oncoming boats and then returned and said it was clear rather than stopping any boats from entering and radioing / phoning back so, bedlam. Eat out a lot. All excellent food. Bull & Dog, Coton. We moored at Bridge 43 and got a cab. Excellent cab company Wem Taxis Castle Tandoori, Chick Dee Side Bistro, Llangollen Thai Gate, Ellesmere Horse and Jockey, Grindley Brook The Barbridge Inn, Barbridge Lockside café, excellent flat white and I’m told fabulous ice cream. Thanks again everyone. Now investigating part of the Shropshire Union Canal for next year.
    7 points
  33. This post cannot be displayed because it is in a forum which requires at least 10 posts to view.
  34. This post cannot be displayed because it is in a forum which requires at least 10 posts to view.
  35. This post cannot be displayed because it is in a forum which requires at least 10 posts to view.
  36. This post cannot be displayed because it is in a forum which requires at least 10 posts to view.
  37. Will be interesting to see if this is the original film then on vhs or one of the re edited ones where many of the stills & clips of the true working boatmen that where sent from Bulls Bridge junction to stk braune for a days filming have been cut out = picture clip in original= Dad & Grandad in vhs film
    7 points
  38. If they did more of that, I'd consider supporting them. A couple of years ago I was explaining to some good friends why I won't support or join the IWA, and they were horrified about my observations regarding the current organisation. They couldn't counter any of my points though, they had to acknowledge that the Aickman wing have completely taken over from the Rolt wing. As a (relatively) young person with a very deep interest in boats and boating, they insist I'm the sort of person the IWA need for the future. My counterargument is that you'd need to get rid of most of the national and regional committee members before I'd consider joining - I'd rather be playing out on the boat than bashing my head against self important twerps who did good works in the Sixties or Seventies but now just rant about the youth of today. I expect this viewpoint to be controversial on this forum! To add: The friends in question have been very actively involved in the IWA for more than fifty years, which is why they were so horrified. They just hadn't looked at it from an outsider's viewpoint before.
    6 points
  39. This post cannot be displayed because it is in a forum which requires at least 10 posts to view.
  40. My advice? Put it back in the skip. Whatever it is, it's broken - that's why it was in there. (It's a skip, so there'll be a mattress in there shortly too - that won't be worth having either)
    6 points
  41. This post cannot be displayed because it is in a forum which requires at least 10 posts to view.
  42. This post cannot be displayed because it is in a forum which requires at least 10 posts to view.
  43. "Good news - the planning application which would have blocked the future restoration of the Uttoxeter Canal at Froghall was unanimously rejected by SMDC's Planning Applications Committee this afternoon. Rupert Smedley represented IWA and CUCT as one of the objectors speaking against the application, and there was a very robust recommendation for refusal by the planning officers. The councillors voted to reject the proposal on a number of grounds, one of which being the future restoration of the canal. Many thanks to everyone who has supported our cause and sent in their own objections over the last six months".
    6 points
  44. This post cannot be displayed because it is in a forum which requires at least 10 posts to view.
  45. This is indeed a reason to go for a caravan or camper - you can enjoy feeling of the open road in front of you... because all the bloomin' "traffic" is stuck behind you!
    6 points
  46. This post cannot be displayed because it is in a forum which requires at least 10 posts to view.
  47. This post cannot be displayed because it is in a forum which requires at least 10 posts to view.
  48. There might one in the Andromeda galaxy, if you're passing through, but this one's fairly good.
    6 points
  49. This post cannot be displayed because it is in a forum which requires at least 10 posts to view.
  50. Ad hominem attacks are quite unpleasant. Play the ball not the man, eh?
    6 points
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