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Deanhopefullboater

Continuous Cruising In London With Full Time Job. Can it be done?

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16 minutes ago, IanD said:

The problem is that even if all the canals where people might want to moor were filled with end-to-end boats, it would meet maybe 1% of the low-cost housing need in the UK while wrecking the canals for navigation -- and it's a one-off sticking plaster, once they're full you can't find more spaces every year to meet the need.

 

Yes the UK has a problem with housing in general and low-cost housing in particular, but filling up the canals with boats isn't even a partial solution, there just aren't enough of them to make any significant difference...

Same as building new roads doesn't solve the traffic problems. It wouldn't solve the housing shortage, but CRT would make a bit more money, and they'll need it when Government money stops. And not that many people want to live on boats anyway. 

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32 minutes ago, IanD said:

The problem is that even if all the canals where people might want to moor were filled with end-to-end boats, it would meet maybe 1% of the low-cost housing need in the UK while wrecking the canals for navigation -- and it's a one-off sticking plaster, once they're full you can't find more spaces every year to meet the need.

 

Yes the UK has a problem with housing in general and low-cost housing in particular, but filling up the canals with boats isn't even a partial solution, there just aren't enough of them to make any significant difference...

 

Even if the canals were filled in and built over - lets say 3,000km x 25m of land = 12,000 hectares.

 

12,000 hectares developed at medium density of 40 dwellings per hectare still only builds 480,000 dwellings. Hardly a dent in the housing shortage.

 

 

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Yeh, but fill in the Thames, what a jackpot, mention it to Boris.....Oxford, Abingdon and Reading could be massive earners not to mention Richmond downstream.

 

Bet they dont even know what a river and canal do.

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On 21/06/2019 at 23:17, ivan&alice said:

 

Thanks for pointing out this thread @Tumshie!

 

I would certainly never recommend "CCing London", because I would not (and most boaters would not) consider this to be bona fide, genuine continuous cruising, in the spirit of the license. In fact there is a perjorative term for this that I've seen bandied about on this forum, "Continuous Mooring" or CM, which is a common complaint about boaters in London and on the Kennet and Avon, especially near Bath, despite the fact that genuine CCers also visit these places.

 

Our situation is different to the OP as my wife works remotely and I work remotely 80% of the time. I have an office in Shoreditch which I go to as and when I like (for the electricity and plumbing, mainly). I generally work from a home office that I have set up (rather... am in the process of setting up) on the boat in our second berth. We bought our boat in London (Kensal Green) 9 months ago and slowly cruised to Bishops Stortford, and then turned around at the end of the navigation and cruised back through London - we are now in Uxbridge. From here we plan to head up the Grand Union and then to Peterborough.

 

My experience of the varying commute when CCing is that it is expensive and time consuming. But for me, being that I only do it once or twice a week, I'd be happy doing it from Manchester. My experience of boating in London has generally been very good. People are very friendly and if you don't really mind where you go, there are moorings around. Double mooring is a given though, and from what I hear (second hand, thankfully) there is a problem with break ins on the boats and muggings on the towpath. You do need to be mindful of security.

 

It's certainly true that some people do CM London, but it's my impression that they don't last long. The CaRT licenses you for 12 months, so in theory I suppose someone could moor up a boat right next to their place of work and get away with not moving for a year. At this point CaRT would not renew their license and they would have their boat removed, if they didn't get rid of it first. I think it's plain to see though that that would be kind of a selfish move. The folks we bought our boat from CMed London, and along with the documentation they supplied with the boat were letters from CaRT warning them that their cruising pattern was insufficient. So they definitely do monitor it strictly. In their case, they got a 6 month extension within which to improve their cruising pattern, which apparently they did.

 

CaRT's intentionally vague rules simply state that you must move to a new "place" at least once a fortnight, place being defined as the next town, or about a mile. I've also heard that they expect at least a 20 mile overall cruising range over the year, and that this range should be fairly evenly distributed throughout the year. They don't really specify what happens if you turn around and visit the same place more than once, but they do say shuffling between two spots is not on. If you are clearly trying to stay as close as possible to a place for as long as possible, essentially having a mooring without paying for one, expect not to have your license renewed the following year.

 

This is all total nonsense, @Alan de Enfield might mean this tongue-in-cheek but I'm not sure. I've never heard of nor seen any coordinated move. Perhaps this is something that used to happen, but I believe the enforcement of the rules has become much stricter in recent years. If there is such a thing as a rotation wating list I've never heard of it. Evidently it's not possible that there are 3x more boats in London than spaces, otherwise two thirds of the boats would be moving at any one time. That's not the case. I only see 5 or 6 boats pass on any given day. That said it is crowded and you'll be lucky to ever get a visitor's mooring in the most popular places like King's Cross and Little Venice. And there are definitely people who are gaming the system but I don;t think they last long.

 

---

 

Is it possible to CC while working in central London? Yes - if you are prepared to commute in from up to 30 miles away (i.e. spend up to 3 hours and up to 30 quid a day, on average about half that), then I think you will be able to meet CaRT's requirements. Would I personally be prepared to do this every day? No. More importantly, would this be in the spirit of continuous cruising? I doubt it - we've drawn plenty of ire from boaters simply from being in London, who feel that anyone CCing in London gives CCers a bad name. As far as I'm concerned it's just about sharing. All you need to realise is that every time you occupy a visitors mooring there are other, genuine visitors who are going to be unable to use that mooring. It's up to you whether you feel OK about your impact on those people, and whether this harder lifestyle including longer and erratic commutes is something you could handle.

The coordinated swapping of mooring places was taking place in the Bulborne area 12-15 years ago, so i think its safe to assume that this would be happening in London and similar high demand areas.

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2 hours ago, BWM said:

The coordinated swapping of mooring places was taking place in the Bulborne area 12-15 years ago, so i think its safe to assume that this would be happening in London and similar high demand areas.

Could you explain more about what you mean by "coordinated swapping of moorings"? Of course people move, and someone takes their place. And it's happened that someone passing me has called out to let me know that they've opened up a spot in area B if I'm looking for one. But unless after your stint at mooring B, you turn around and head back to mooring A, what is the problem with that?

 

How do you know that this was taking place in Bulborne?

 

My impression is that things have changed quite a lot in 12-15 years. If you spent time moving back and forth CaRT would not renew your license. I certainly am not part of any "coordinated swapping of moorings" WhatsApp group, nor have I heard of one, nor would I want to be in one, nor would I even think it would be effective given that someone would likely take the spot before you got there.

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22 hours ago, Murflynn said:

clearly you don't believe that the canals are intended to allow you to move around the system in a reasonably progressive manner;  if you do so, the terminology used by CRT is irrelevant, however if you insist on pushing the margins, then you are not a bona fide navigator.

I always thought the canals were built to move stuff around which results in boats neither remaining permanently in one place nor being continuosly on the move. The terminology only becomes irrelevant once you become familiar with the legislation and learn something of the history and it is obvious from talking to people as I travel around the system that 'continuous cruising' actually represents some boaters' total knowledge of the subject.

 

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2 hours ago, ivan&alice said:

Could you explain more about what you mean by "coordinated swapping of moorings"? Of course people move, and someone takes their place. And it's happened that someone passing me has called out to let me know that they've opened up a spot in area B if I'm looking for one. But unless after your stint at mooring B, you turn around and head back to mooring A, what is the problem with that?

 

How do you know that this was taking place in Bulborne?

 

My impression is that things have changed quite a lot in 12-15 years. If you spent time moving back and forth CaRT would not renew your license. I certainly am not part of any "coordinated swapping of moorings" WhatsApp group, nor have I heard of one, nor would I want to be in one, nor would I even think it would be effective given that someone would likely take the spot before you got there.

We were based in Uxbridge on a mooring but cruised almost constantly, but with kids in school Marsworth/Aylesbury arm was the realistic limit of our range, and as such we were regular visitors. After one individual had a complete meltdown as we pulled into a vacant spot a couple of minutes after our arrival, we asked a few friends who moored there regularly and were told about the phone based swapping. My contacts in the area are beyond gossip or doubt and as such i have no trouble believing that this was the case, or that this happens elsewhere. 

Edited by BWM

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Mooring swapping might happen in the odd rare instance between 2 boats close together...and so what. but if you actually think about the logistics it's ridiculous to think it could happen on any scale. It would need a chain of boats all moving from one mooring to another, with boat 1 arriving at the mooring where boat 2 is so boat 2 leaves and goes to where boat 3 is and so on. It's just another myth perpetuated by out of towners who dont like London!

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4 minutes ago, Dave123 said:

Mooring swapping might happen in the odd rare instance between 2 boats close together...and so what. but if you actually think about the logistics it's ridiculous to think it could happen on any scale. It would need a chain of boats all moving from one mooring to another, with boat 1 arriving at the mooring where boat 2 is so boat 2 leaves and goes to where boat 3 is and so on. It's just another myth perpetuated by out of towners who dont like London!

I'd suggest it's something you don't wish to believe, no one suggested that all craft swap around at the same time. As for so what about a couple of boats swapping at a time, in an area such as the one i mentioned, the selfish mentality of those in that area made sure that my family and many others ever got to moor near the picnic area in over a decade. 

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2 minutes ago, BWM said:

I'd suggest it's something you don't wish to believe, no one suggested that all craft swap around at the same time. As for so what about a couple of boats swapping at a time, in an area such as the one i mentioned, the selfish mentality of those in that area made sure that my family and many others ever got to moor near the picnic area in over a decade. 

But how would it work? One of the two mooring spots being 'swapped' would have to be empty for some time unless both boats leave simultaneously and are not very far apart. Are these boaters with home moorings shuttling/bridge hopping? Otherwise they could only swap once before having to move on and leave the Bulbourne area for most of the rest of the year to comply with range? And when was this? I have never struggled to find a mooring at Bulbourne, it's hardly Bath or Kings Cross in terms of popularity. 

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38 minutes ago, Dave123 said:

But how would it work? One of the two mooring spots being 'swapped' would have to be empty for some time unless both boats leave simultaneously and are not very far apart. Are these boaters with home moorings shuttling/bridge hopping? Otherwise they could only swap once before having to move on and leave the Bulbourne area for most of the rest of the year to comply with range? And when was this? I have never struggled to find a mooring at Bulbourne, it's hardly Bath or Kings Cross in terms of popularity. 

It’s easier the more there are, especially if you start and finish in a less congested area.  So boat 1 sets off arrives at boar 2 mooring spot, boat 2 pulls out and boat 1 moves in to moor.  Boat 2 then goes to boat 3 mooring etc, etc.  Last boat in the sequence then goes to the start area and has to find a mooring.  If there are (example) 10 boats, you only struggle to find a mooring every tenth cycle.

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4 hours ago, Señor Chris said:

I always thought the canals were built to move stuff around which results in boats neither remaining permanently in one place nor being continuosly on the move. The terminology only becomes irrelevant once you become familiar with the legislation and learn something of the history and it is obvious from talking to people as I travel around the system that 'continuous cruising' actually represents some boaters' total knowledge of the subject.

 

are people 'stuff'?  otherwise we clearly have no business being on the canals.

 

anyway I said the canals are intended ..........   present tense, current use patterns.    nothing to do with why they were constructed in the first place, but taking into account the work done by volunteers to keep them open or the restore them and re-open them.

 

it would seem that you think that, because at some time in the past canals may have been used in some localities to move 'stuff' over short distances, this would justify a very restricted movement pattern.    you are making great efforts to justify a pattern which is not bona fide navigation for a recreational or residential boater.

Edited by Murflynn
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3 hours ago, Dave123 said:

But how would it work? One of the two mooring spots being 'swapped' would have to be empty for some time unless both boats leave simultaneously and are not very far apart. Are these boaters with home moorings shuttling/bridge hopping? Otherwise they could only swap once before having to move on and leave the Bulbourne area for most of the rest of the year to comply with range? And when was this? I have never struggled to find a mooring at Bulbourne, it's hardly Bath or Kings Cross in terms of popularity. 

I'm referring to the situation some years ago, enforcement has changed and i am now in a different area. At the time, it was much like Bath, London and Oxford are now, just on a smaller scale.

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3 hours ago, Chewbacka said:

It’s easier the more there are, especially if you start and finish in a less congested area.  So boat 1 sets off arrives at boar 2 mooring spot, boat 2 pulls out and boat 1 moves in to moor.  Boat 2 then goes to boat 3 mooring etc, etc.  Last boat in the sequence then goes to the start area and has to find a mooring.  If there are (example) 10 boats, you only struggle to find a mooring every tenth cycle.

Ah, this is why I wanted to hear more about how you think the logistics of this would work. Because if it indeed worked this way with ten boats - with boat 2 pulling out for boat 1 to immediately occupy and so on - this would be something you would observe happening, at least 9/10 of the time. I haven't seen a boat pulling out of a mooring for a waiting boat to take over. Not even once.

 

I call shenanigans on this whole theory. It may happen occasionally within small groups of selfish (or oblivious) boaters, but it simply doesn't happen at the scale that has been suggested in this thread. There are hundreds - thousands? - of boats in London at any given time. Even if ten or twenty are involved in such an evil scheme, it isn't going to make a noticeable difference across the whole city. Besides, what an enormous amount of effort to coordinate this when you could instead cast off when you feel like it, cruise until bored and you find a spot you like, then moor up?

As someone who has "done" London, in my experience such a scheme simply wouldn't be necessary. The majority of boaters abide by the rules and are navigating at least a mile every two weeks. And CaRT comes down on those who don't. It may be that in your view that 30 odd miles a year isn't enough, and I'd personally agree that there isn't much point in boating if you're just gaming the system to permanently hang around within a 30 mile wide area. But the general negative sentiment towards CMers from PMers (permanent mooring holders) and marathon-distance CCers doesn't (fortunately) count.

 

The upshot is that generally speaking, there is a place for you to moor as a visitor to London if you aren't too picky, and if you want to CC London (to refer back to the OP), you can do it if you are willing to commute up to 30 miles a day. Of course, CaRT's rules are likely to get stricter, not more lenient, so I also wouldn't rely on this as a long term plan. But the system isn't nearly as broken as the people who don't actually cruise in London would have you believe.

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Couldnt agree more! It's absurd that people even think this happens. The degree of organisation required is unlikely even if it was worth it. And so much could go wrong...a rogue boat pinching a carefully orchestrated mooring vacancy! I should add I am no longer based in London before I get accused of an attempt at covering up this conspiracy🤣. In reference to the comment above about never being able to moor at Bulbourne picnic site in 15 years...how many times did you try? How do you know boats were swapping? It sounds more like a boat or 2 chronically overstaying or having a very limited range...which is a totally different and very real and annoying issue of course.

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2 minutes ago, Dave123 said:

Couldnt agree more! It's absurd that people even think this happens. The degree of organisation required is unlikely even if it was worth it. And so much could go wrong...a rogue boat pinching a carefully orchestrated mooring vacancy! I should add I am no longer based in London before I get accused of an attempt at covering up this conspiracy🤣. In reference to the comment above about never being able to moor at Bulbourne picnic site in 15 years...how many times did you try? How do you know boats were swapping? It sounds more like a boat or 2 chronically overstaying or having a very limited range...which is a totally different and very real and annoying issue of course.

Before anyone jumps to conclusion I am not saying it happens!  However it has been said 1Km is the next place away.  So what is that 15 minutes or less cruising time.  With mobile phones I would have thought a change over was possible.

 

With a rogue boat you would be no worse off than if you were having to move without trying to organise some sort of mooring syndicate.

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There is a posting on Facebook tonight of someone looking for a boat mover to move the boat for them the required distance every 14 days as they dont have time with work and a baby https://www.facebook.com/groups/73933281285/permalink/10156051430651286/ Turns out there are loads of people offering this service.

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1 hour ago, Dave123 said:

Couldnt agree more! It's absurd that people even think this happens. The degree of organisation required is unlikely even if it was worth it. And so much could go wrong...a rogue boat pinching a carefully orchestrated mooring vacancy! I should add I am no longer based in London before I get accused of an attempt at covering up this conspiracy🤣. In reference to the comment above about never being able to moor at Bulbourne picnic site in 15 years...how many times did you try? How do you know boats were swapping? It sounds more like a boat or 2 chronically overstaying or having a very limited range...which is a totally different and very real and annoying issue of course.

Around 10 years was the period i stated, and many visits. It doesn't take Columbo's powers of deduction to observe broadly the same boats over time. I've used an example of something that came up for discussion that i had knowledge of, the situation and conditions there may well have changed now but it certainly was the case then. 

 As an aside, i  have no issue with continuous cruising or any desire to break the communities that thrive because people move within a certain range. I do however, regret the many extra restrictions and stricter enforcement brought about by those entirely focused on their own selfish needs.

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1 hour ago, ditchcrawler said:

There is a posting on Facebook tonight of someone looking for a boat mover to move the boat for them the required distance every 14 days as they dont have time with work and a baby https://www.facebook.com/groups/73933281285/permalink/10156051430651286/ Turns out there are loads of people offering this service.

I'm not surprised. I wonder how many of them turn up with a couple of cans of paint and a space booked on Apolloduck... 

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10 hours ago, Jerra said:

Before anyone jumps to conclusion I am not saying it happens!  However it has been said 1Km is the next place away.  So what is that 15 minutes or less cruising time.  With mobile phones I would have thought a change over was possible.

 

With a rogue boat you would be no worse off than if you were having to move without trying to organise some sort of mooring syndicate.

I don't think that coordinated CMing is impossible, I just think it is unlikely and unnecessary to ensure a mooring, and it doesn't fit with what I've personally observed. There are many things that are possible that don't happen. The premise is that a significant enough portion of the boaters in London are doing coordinated CMing that it changes the character of boating in London. I'm not claiming that it doesn't happen at all, just that it doesn't happen at nearly the scale boaters who avoid London entirely are claiming.

10 hours ago, ditchcrawler said:

There is a posting on Facebook tonight of someone looking for a boat mover to move the boat for them the required distance every 14 days as they dont have time with work and a baby https://www.facebook.com/groups/73933281285/permalink/10156051430651286/ Turns out there are loads of people offering this service.

11 hours ago, Dave123 said:

It sounds more like a boat or 2 chronically overstaying or having a very limited range...which is a totally different and very real and annoying issue of course.

Like @Dave123 says, these are different issues. There are many occassions where such a boat moving service would be legitimate. Does CCing imply that you can never be off your boat? Indeed I myself had a boat sitter when we went on holiday, who moved our boat and stayed on it to ensure security. Though having a permanent arrangement where you have someone move your boat so you can live undisturbed by any actual BOATING is pretty ridiculous. The comments on that "boater"'s facebook post are mostly of disgust, I doubt this is an acceptable or common thing that people do long term in London. Clearly it happens, but I don't think this person represents anywhere near the majority of CCers.

 

9 hours ago, BWM said:

i  have no issue with continuous cruising or any desire to break the communities that thrive because people move within a certain range. I do however, regret the many extra restrictions and stricter enforcement brought about by those entirely focused on their own selfish needs.

I'm a little confused by this. When you say "a certain range" what do you mean? What, in your view, is an acceptable cruising pattern, or an acceptable range and how does it differ from the common interpretation of CaRT's acceptable cruising pattern?

 

You mention that you "regret the many extra restrictions and stricter enforcement". Are you saying that you'd like to occassionally cruise less than the stipulated minimum? Or simply that you regret that CaRT has to waste money monitoring this?

 

As I understand it, CCers are expected to move at least a mile every fortnight, which works out to be at least 26 miles a year. If all boaters are moving randomly (i.e. not coordinating) I'm not sure that this is a small enough range to form a "thriving community". So really any thriving community is likely to be in breach of their licenses.

 

Personally I think the current rules are sufficient and reasonable to allow boaters fair access to the waterways, and if anything, CaRT should come down harder on those that don't follow them. I also regret that people don't follow the rules and that we have to waste our license money policing them, but it's not fair to blame CCers in general for this rather than the ones who don't abide by the simple and minimal rules.

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2 minutes ago, ivan&alice said:

As I understand it, CCers are expected to move at least a mile every fortnight, which works out to be at least 26 miles a year.

That appears to be a little at 'odds' with what C&RT have told boaters :

 

C&RT are actually saying that a RANGE (radius of your central point) should be a minimum of 20 miles per annum.

 

London Enforcement Manager Simon Cadek sent an email to a boater who was warned that they were on course for failing their six month restricted licence, telling them what they would need to do to 'pass'.

The email is on public record as part of advice to boaters in the London Boaters Facebook group and dates from the end of 2016.


“When we are looking at boat movements we are looking for characteristics of bona fide navigation, these fall roughly into four categories:

· Range: by range we mean the furthest points a boat has travelled on the network, not merely the total distance travelled. While the BW act does not stipulate what that distance is the Trust has previously said that anyone travelling a range of less than say 20 miles (32km) would struggle to satisfy the Trust that they are engaged in bona fide navigation and that normally we would expect a greater range.

. For the avoidance of doubt, a small number of long journeys over a short period of time, followed or preceded by cruising in a small area of the network would not generally satisfy the Trust that you are engaged in bona fide navigation.

· Overstaying: we look to see how often boats overstay, either the 14 day limit on the main length of the canal, or shorter periods where local signage dictates, for example short stay visitor moorings.
While we are flexible with the occasional overstay from most boaters due to breakdown, illness or other emergencies, we will look at the overall pattern balanced with range and movement pattern in order to form a view.
Overstay reminders are issued when a boat is seen in the same area for more than 14 days. While we are unable to say how far you need to travel each time you move, we would advise that you normally travel further than a few km each time.
This will prevent you from getting reminders and depending on the length of other trips you make and how many times you turn back on yourself, should increase your overall range over the course of your licence.

· Movement: Continuous Cruiser Licences are intended for bona fide (genuine) navigation around the network, rather than for a boat to remain in one mooring spot, place neighbourhood or area.
We would expect boats on these licences to move around the network such that they don’t gravitate back to favoured areas too often i.e. in a way that it’s clear to us that they’re living in a small area of the waterway.
The basic principle of this is that these licences are not intended for living in an area and if it looks like a boat is habitually returning to a particular part of the waterway then this would not generally satisfy the Trust.

Within an acceptable range we’d expect a genuine movement, so for example it would not satisfy the Trust if a boat went on a 60 mile trip during the course of say two weeks, then returned to cruise in an area of say 5 miles the remainder of the time (figures are examples only).
Generally speaking, the smaller the range the less we’d expect to see boats back at the same locations. Of course people need to turn around and they’re perfectly free to re-visit places they have been to before, it’s living in a small area on this kind of licence that would cause a problem.

 

 

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On 23/06/2019 at 14:45, Arthur Marshall said:

I think it's the difference between "continuous" and "continual".  If you had to be continually cruising you wouldn't be able to stop,

Actually, you would; but if you were continuously cruising, theoretically you wouldn't.

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9 minutes ago, Alan de Enfield said:

That appears to be a little at 'odds' with what C&RT have told boaters :

 

C&RT are actually saying that a RANGE (radius of your central point) should be a minimum of 20 miles per annum. 

Not "radius". Range is furthest point to furthest point. A radius if 20 miles would imply that furthest points would have to be 40 miles apart. They weren't clear whether this is as the crow flies or as the duck swims (along the canal), but I assume it is as the duck swims.

 

If you move only every fortnight you are moving 26 times a year. If you move only in one direction and aim to range exactly 20 miles in your year, that's 0.77 miles each time. If you round up, you're moving 1 mile at a time and ranging just over 20 miles in a year.

Of course if you turn around, you need to cruise further to make your range.

 

 

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10 minutes ago, ivan&alice said:

They weren't clear whether this is as the crow flies or as the duck swims (along the canal), but I assume it is as the duck swims.

 

Point of Order M'Lud...

 

Ducks don't 'swim', they float on the surface and paddle. Fish swim. 

 

Hope that clarifies things....

 

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