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Derek Porteous

Traditional Boats... a sense of entitlement?

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Now I know this is a generalisation, and like all walks of life... there is good and bad (in the eyes of the beholder).

We started our summer cruise 10 days ago.  All good so far, apart from the weather...BUT. In the past three days, we have encountered three “events”, in themselves quite trivial, but all involving “tradition working boats”.

In order, we arrived at lock 54 at Rode Heath. A gentleman in high vis vest arrived by bicycle and proceeded to fill the lock against us although we had priority. No matter we thought... we could wait. Well wait we did, and waited... for a quarter of an hour. The cyclist had certainly got in front of his boat. On chatting to him he proceeded to moan about being held up by a hire boat which had descended in front of him ( quarter of an hour in front). The irony of holding other boats up seemed to be lost by him.

Incident two was coming out of the lock just above Red Bull services. There were two traditional boats taking on water there. There was also the line of moored boats making passage effectively one (two way at a push, but very tight). Just as we were leaving the lock, traditional boat 1 cast off and barrelled down the canal forcing us to reverse back to the entrance of the lock. Traditional boat 2 almost did the same but, to their credit, pulled back in and waved us through.

The third incident was when we had moored at Barlaston amongst the usual long trot of moored boats. A traditional boat has just come past at quite a speed just inches from the line of boats. Yes, we know they are deeper draughted and have to keep to the channel....but at speed? Anyway a glass of rather fine Shiraz is now staining our carpet and my usually rosy outlook on life is, a bit like our carpet, a tad tarnished. No doubt we will encounter three consecutive instances of courtesy by traditional boaters in the next three days to balance out. If so I will be delighted to submit another new topic and retract my scurrilous views of traditional boater’s sense of entitlement.

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6 minutes ago, Derek Porteous said:

Now I know this is a generalisation, and like all walks of life... there is good and bad (in the eyes of the beholder).

We started our summer cruise 10 days ago.  All good so far, apart from the weather...BUT. In the past three days, we have encountered three “events”, in themselves quite trivial, but all involving “tradition working boats”.

In order, we arrived at lock 54 at Rode Heath. A gentleman in high vis vest arrived by bicycle and proceeded to fill the lock against us although we had priority. No matter we thought... we could wait. Well wait we did, and waited... for a quarter of an hour. The cyclist had certainly got in front of his boat. On chatting to him he proceeded to moan about being held up by a hire boat which had descended in front of him ( quarter of an hour in front). The irony of holding other boats up seemed to be lost by him.

Incident two was coming out of the lock just above Red Bull services. There were two traditional boats taking on water there. There was also the line of moored boats making passage effectively one (two way at a push, but very tight). Just as we were leaving the lock, traditional boat 1 cast off and barrelled down the canal forcing us to reverse back to the entrance of the lock. Traditional boat 2 almost did the same but, to their credit, pulled back in and waved us through.

The third incident was when we had moored at Barlaston amongst the usual long trot of moored boats. A traditional boat has just come past at quite a speed just inches from the line of boats. Yes, we know they are deeper draughted and have to keep to the channel....but at speed? Anyway a glass of rather fine Shiraz is now staining our carpet and my usually rosy outlook on life is, a bit like our carpet, a tad tarnished. No doubt we will encounter three consecutive instances of courtesy by traditional boaters in the next three days to balance out. If so I will be delighted to submit another new topic and retract my scurrilous views of traditional boater’s sense of entitlement.

Were any of these boats actually carrying anything.  If not they have no entitlement. 

There were times when I put another boat into the mud, but I always told them to throw me a rope and pulled them off.

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14 minutes ago, Derek Porteous said:

we arrived at lock 54 at Rode Heath. A gentleman in high vis vest arrived by bicycle and proceeded to fill the lock against us although we had priority. No matter we thought... we could wait. Well wait we did, and waited... for a quarter of an hour. The cyclist had certainly got in front of his boat. On chatting to him he proceeded to moan about being held up by a hire boat which had descended in front of him ( quarter of an hour in front). The irony of holding other boats up seemed to be lost by him.

That's plain rude.  Name and shame that one!

 

In general response to the rest of your post, I find there are tossers in all walks of life, and simply owning an old boat is no exception to the rule.

 

That said, some of the old boats crews are the most courteous helpful people you are likely to find on the cut.

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Most of em are not even boaters,  they live in houses and venture out on occasion thinking they know all about it!! 😎 In reality as our Biscuity friend states, it takes all kinds. Good and bad boating in equal measure is to be found in all things boat. It realy is a fact though that more private boaters seem up themselves than hirers innitt.

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Next time anyone tries to pull the 'working boat' trick, ask to see his manifest. Then argue the toss with him 'cos he probably won't understand.

An unladen boat probably draws around 3ft 6in so they will always take the channel, and probably ground you as they pass; you'll soon float again after they have passed,  Even at tickover, they probably travel faster than a modern craft, and will move a lot of water. How were you tied? With short parallel ropes, you will always tip, especially if also tied with a tight centre rope. If you tie with a 2-3 ft toe out back and front, you will just move back and forward and preserve your fine wine.

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Seems crazy you would either moor or leave a glass in such a way that a glass of wine could be spilt. Life is far too short to worry about these things. Boaters generally are becoming more inconsiderate like the world at large. Pour another glass and Enjoy the rest of your holiday.

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Just now, Tuscan said:

Seems crazy you would [...] leave a glass in such a way that a glass of wine could be spilt

Do you mean full? :cheers:

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39 minutes ago, Chris Williams said:

Were any of these boats actually carrying anything.  If not they have no entitlement. 

There were times when I put another boat into the mud, but I always told them to throw me a rope and pulled them off.

Empty or full, they still have no entitlement to be treated in a "special" way.

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16 minutes ago, Mike the Boilerman said:

 

Would you have felt the urge to post about it had these been modern boats? 

 

 I've seen similar behaviour from modern boat owners. Have you not? 

 

 

I think the problem stems from an assumption that someone with a traditional boat should know what they are doing. Of course the reality is this often isn’t the case - posh bloke from London with too much money bought a traditional boat so he could be “special” (aka “all the gear and no idea”!). But it is an easy assumption to make, even if often proven wrong!

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Working boats are particularly bad, first they often don't apologise, they just look the other way as if they are so superior that non working boaters are not worth talking to, and worse because many of them have very high fronts, especially when unloaded, they are not "compatible" with most modern boats and so can do more significant damage in an impact.

They also go much too fast. As someone who has spent the last ten years in a deepish 70 footer I know how much water we push about and so try to make an extra effort to slow down when passing other boats, there is no reason why a 70 footer needs to go fast!!!!!!

and....although some of them are long term boaters quite a few are just hobby boaters who like to go fast and have poor boat handling skills, and a poor boater in charge of a very big boat going too fast is bad news.

 

As you might guess from this rant we were hit very hard by two of these things recently.

 

..........Dave

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24 minutes ago, Mike the Boilerman said:

 

Would you have felt the urge to post about it had these been modern boats? 

 

 I've seen similar behaviour from modern boat owners. Have you not? 

 

 

Possibly a very valid point, Mike. And I suspect the answer is “no”. 

However the reason I did post was that on balance the number of modern boats vastly outnumber the number of traditional boats. We have only had three instances of discourteous behaviour, albeit on the last three consecutive days, and all three were traditional boats.

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I don’t understand the definition of traditional boat. 

If you go on appalling duck they appear to be the majority of craft for sale .

Then you talk about tradition working boats .

 

Are you talking about unconverted ex cargo carrying narrow Boats? 

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Good  for Maureen! I must admit that when we came up her lock today I felt sad that she was no longer with us but I remembered the many happy moments we had passing through her lock. She was a lovely lady who didn't suffer fools gladly 

Haggis 

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43 minutes ago, nicknorman said:

I think the problem stems from an assumption that someone with a traditional boat should know what they are doing. Of course the reality is this often isn’t the case - posh bloke from London with too much money bought a traditional boat so he could be “special” (aka “all the gear and no idea”!). But it is an easy assumption to make, even if often proven wrong!

I’d be delighted if anyone assumed I knew what I was doing when crewing an ex-working boat.

 

As a volunteer in an ex-working boat you can guarantee there will be a queue of people ready to point out what you are doing wrong having themselves made the assumption that by daring to step on an ex-working boat a volunteer is declaring themselves a master of traditional boating techniques.

 

Personally I just want to enjoy boating on an interesting craft and improve my skills, which it never fails to do. At least as a volunteer who is also the owner of an ordinary pleasure boat I have some idea of the difference between how historic and modern boats handle. I think some boaters might see things a little differently with such knowledge. That’s not to say they should know but I think they might be able to help avoid some of the conflict if they did. I can’t honestly say I recognise the behaviours observed above when out on my pleasure boat.

 

JP

 

 

 

 

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50 minutes ago, nicknorman said:

I think the problem stems from an assumption that someone with a traditional boat should know what they are doing. Of course the reality is this often isn’t the case - posh bloke from London with too much money bought a traditional boat so he could be “special” (aka “all the gear and no idea”!). But it is an easy assumption to make, even if often proven wrong!

This is very true. We often see much older couples than us handling boats very badly, going too fast, too much use of the girlie button etc etc. I have said many times that even though old they may well be inexperienced as they probably waited until retirement to buy a boat. This was somewhat reinforced last week when a polished working boat look a like with an antique engine smacked into our moorings to use the shop. A quick natter found them to be complete novices on their first trip out on their first boat lol. There are many youngsters in their thirties with a lot more experience innitt.

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It does take all sorts I guess the problem is you tend to remember the more memorable boats... 

 

i had had a run in with Liverpool short boat Ribble  a while ago, I came away with the distinct impression that he thought being big and historic  gave him some sort of priority over mere ordinary boats, I just thought he was a Pratt...  

 

I’m sure I’ve had other minor skirmishes doubtless some where I have been at fault but the boats don’t stick in my memory as they weren’t out of the ordinary. 

 

Well that’s my theory anyway....

 

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11 minutes ago, Chris Williams said:

Anyone who owns a 'Traditional Working Boat' should load the dam' thing with coal, and I mean Load, and take it up a badly silted canal and learn something about handling it.  Play acting with a spotted neckerchief is not boating. 

But I am sure the style of boating you were used to doing back in 1975 is the type of boating that would be getting highlighted in this thread as anti-social - fore end resting against gates, pushing gates open when running uphill (not ramming them), using a mast line to open gates, using a strapping line to close gates when running downhill, using a shaft to close bottom gates e.t.c. - and all of which are techniques I was familiar with using back in the day, but I can see that I am going to have to review these when I get to go boating again :captain:

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8 minutes ago, jonathanA said:

i had had a run in with Liverpool short boat Ribble  a while ago, I came away with the distinct impression that he thought being big and historic  gave him some sort of priority over mere ordinary boats, I just thought he was a Pratt...

 

That's interesting, because @DRP is one of those I was thinking of when I said

 

2 hours ago, TheBiscuits said:

some of the old boats crews are the most courteous helpful people you are likely to find on the cut.

 

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4 minutes ago, pete harrison said:

But I am sure the style of boating you were used to doing back in 1975 is the type of boating that would be getting highlighted in this thread as anti-social - fore end resting against gates, pushing gates open when running uphill (not ramming them), using a mast line to open gates, using a strapping line to close gates when running downhill, using a shaft to close bottom gates e.t.c. - and all of which are techniques I was familiar with using back in the day, but I can see that I am going to have to review these when I get to go boating again :captain:

Just don't let anybody see you doing those things, the Play-actors will try to copy you and really do some damage.

 

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3 hours ago, Derek Porteous said:

No doubt we will encounter three consecutive instances of courtesy by traditional boaters in the next three days to balance out. If so I will be delighted to submit another new topic and retract my scurrilous views of traditional boater’s sense of entitlement.

Derek,

In view f your post you may be happy to hear that around a dozen "historics" are currently locked in on the Rochdale due to the major failure at Tannersfield Locks, with, by my estimation, very little prospect of them being able to escape for several weeks.

This  should considerably reduce your chances of meeting any more, unless you venture onto the Rochdale from the Sowerby Bridge end, but even then they are unlikely to be moving very far, as they can't fit the locks on the Calder and Hebble.

More sriously, you do at least concede it might be possible to meet well behaved ones, but the problem with your "shame but not name" post is that it potentially tars all of us that own such boats as being liable to such behaviours.

Personally I have no sense of entitlement or superiority associated with owning a couple of these craft, and expect to get no priority or privilege over anybody.  However, you are quite correct that we regularly don't come close to floating where your boat easily will, and that has to be factored into our options for moving about.

A further thought on this - some ex working boats are of course sometimes worked by volunteers rather than owners.  Some of those volunteers are excellent - probably far better than I could ever be, but there have been documented cases recently where historic boats have clearly been left in the charge of people completely unsuitable to handle them. This clearly should not happen, but has, and is inexcusable.   I'm curious if at east some of the examples you report might be such cases, as most "owned" ones I know about don't tend to acquire this kind of bad press.

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