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Justin Smith

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    Swimming, boating, TV/radio transmission, railways and my family, not necessarily in that order.

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  1. I can see if one own`s the boat and doesn`t want to use one`s own loo or shower, plus charging the batteries is using one`s own fuel, then paying a relatively small amount for overnight mooring might make more sense. But if you`re in a hire boat, particularly one with no shore power facility, and indeed the fuel might be included anyway, then paying to moor up makes less sense. Given the choice I`d rather moor up miles away from anywhere anyway, the equivalent of "wild camping" (as it was referred to when we hired a camper van in NZ), though I accept that if one wants to visit the town, for an Indian in this case - that doesn't really work !
  2. When we`re down the local pools with him other parents frequently say he`s like a fish isn`t he ? Actually I`d say like an otter.....
  3. Funnily enough, whilst going south through the Hillmorton locks on the morning of the day our lad went in, we got briefly chatting to a boater going the other way, and he said he`d been boating 50 odd years and had fallen in a few weeks previously for the first time. He said it was wet and his foot was on the edge of the gunwhale (where it isn`t grippy), he wasn`t concentrating and in he went.
  4. I would agree with you, I use it, but the boatyard seemed to be discouraging it, particularly for our lad, though ironically he`s more confident in the water than his mother * ! Too confident actually because whilst walking up the gunwhale he did fall in, as mentioned in another thread. * Proud parent alert : 3yr 11 month year old diving to 8ft.
  5. I wouldn't want to discourage anyone from going up the Ashby, it`s a beautiful canal. It is a bit shallow (but not as bad as the Brecon) which also has the effect of slowing ones progress, so it took us longer than we`d planned to get to the end and back. Ironically it was on the Coventry canal we got really badly grounded. It was the only time in a dozen or so hires that we had to get towed off by another boat, I really don`t know how we`d have got off were it not for that helpful boater. Funnily enough, earlier the same day (on the Oxford) we got asked to tow another boat off, and failed to manage it. Basically I think one has to get a bit of slack in the rope between you and use the momentum of the boat, though that requires you to have confidence in the rope and the strength of the cleats !
  6. Most people find reversing a boat quite difficult as there is no wash over the rudder, and, just to make it even harder you`re looking in the wrong direction compared to how one would normally be steering the thing. It is possible, I`ve done it out of interest when there weren`t any other boats (or people ! ) present, but it wasn`t easy and I wouldn`t really want to try it down a canal particularly if there were boats moored along it so any error resulted in the possibility of hitting someone's pride and joy. I don`t like the thought of bow thrusters on canal boats, but they`d undoubtedly be useful. I can only repeat that when we had boats on eth Broads with bow thrusters I most appreciated the extra confidence they gave me. E.g. if I motored up a narrow inlet and couldn`t turn round (and you can turn round relatively easily in the length of the boat using one) I could reverse all the way out. Also going round bends with overhanging vegetation (which is generally when a boat comes in the opposite direction) one can literally put full reverse on and still steer out of the way at the same time = less stress. "Just teach the 6 year old to always take their shoes off" - would that it were that easy, particularly with our 6 year old.,..... Incidentally, crew are supposed to be discouraged from walking down the gunwhale, but that means they`re going to have to walk through the boat instead, risky when one has been ashore where ignorants might have been walking their dogs....
  7. Very possibly, but traders in the town will benefit from any additional moorings, so the council (possibly the next level up) or maybe the local business association, who should be trying to get them, out of self interest.
  8. It did at the time, partly because I`d got myself psyched up for a lovely Indian but had to make do with beans on toast ! Worse was whilst farting about attempting to moor in the shallow bit beyond the moorings my 6 year old lad accidentally stepped in a load of dog **** and then trailed it all over in the inside of the boat before we found out. I was mad about it, but my wife was apoplectic. If the guilty dog owner had appeared even my mild mannered wife would have had a right go at him (or her) !
  9. I sent an E Mail to Market Bosworth parish council, but they just suggested I get onto the CRT...... Bearing in mind the condition of the Ashby (very shallow and loads of over hanging trees) I took it for granted that the CRT wouldn't have the money to put some more moorings in !
  10. Reversing a canal boat is difficult *, which is why you hardly ever see it being done. It`s even more difficult if you`re a hirer who never has the boat long enough to get used to a particular craft`s intricacies. * Reversing a boat with a bow thruster is much easier, but even then I wouldn`t call it easy. We`ve hired a few boats on the Broads with bow thrusters and I had a play reversing them. Incidentally the boat yards were saying the reason they fit bow thrusters is because it greatly lessens the damage done to the boats because it makes them much easier to control. It certainly gives you a lot more confidence knowing you can actually stop the boat (or have it hard astern) and still turn it, and or if another boat comes round the blind bend at the last moment you can get out of the way much quicker. Bow thrusters are cheating though !
  11. This is what I was driving at (or rather boating at), the council should, one way or the other, be trying to increase the number of moorings. Either by putting pressure on the CRT, or offering to sponsor some. It brings money into their town, thus it`s an investment in the most straightforward sense of the word. At the very least it should get the CRT to dredge 50 to 100m of the canal south of the moorings so it is actually possible to moor, albeit using mooring pins etc. The fact is most boaters don`t want to pay for moorings, and in fact don`t expect to. But, if travelling south it`s a bit irrelevant anyway, because unless you`ve got a bow thruster it`s not that easy to reverse a canal boat back up to the paid for moorings north of the bridge.
  12. The CRT selling off towpath mooring rights, isn`t that the thin end of a very long wedge ? After all boaters pay large amounts to allow them to use the canals and moorings on the towpaths, in theory, what`s to stop CRT selling off huge amounts to towpath ? It`ll raise funds yes, but also reducing the availability to boaters who pay their licences..... What are the rules or guidelines over how much they can sell off ?
  13. We were cruising past Market Bosworth the other week and noticed that, just north of the bridge, there were chargeable moorings, apparently owned by Bosworth Marina. How can moorings on the towpath side be owned by anyone (other than the CRT), or in fact chargeable ? On the subject of Mkt Bosworth, it`s pathetic that there`s only about three moorings there* and it`s too shallow to moor beyond. We were going to stop off there on the way south (no turning point to go back north to the chargeable moorings even if one was prepared to pay) and go into the town for an Indian but were unable to find moorings. So that`s about £50 less for the Mkt Bosworth economy ! Thus I`d have thought the council should be sponsoring CRT to put some more in ? * excluding two for the water point, though because of the position of the taps and the bridge it`d not be straightforward to get two decent length boats rewatering at the same time anyway !
  14. When we`ve hired on the Broads, where there is a current, I find it much easier to moor. You want to be moving against the current then you can literally come in parallel, more or less. But the main point is you can still steer and manoeuvre the boat whilst it`s stationary relative to the bank. I find it much harder in a canal where there`s no current because if you need to stay in the same position, relative to the bank, then by definition you have no gear which equals no steer
  15. Thanks for that. We will take him to the GP`s if he exhibits flu like symptoms in the next few weeks, and not bother if he doesn`t.
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