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Hire and enjoy Till the boaters kill the dream

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Firstly I must start with most of the people on the cut are friendly and helpful to new boaters and hirers.

 

Over the past 10 years or so I have loved the reception we have recieved  from the canal people but latly (about 18 months) we have expierenced

a decline in the attitude tuwards us that hire

Are we not contributing enough to the upkeep of the system?

 

When did this hate of use hirers start and why?

 

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Its always been the case in my view. I took a hire boat from Rugby down to Reading 10 or 12 years ago and the contrast in attitude to me from other boaters from when on my own boat to on the hire boat, I found shocking.
 

Never believed there was much difference in attitude until I actually spent a few days on a 70ft signwritten hire boat and experienced it first hand. 
 

 

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4 hours ago, Mike the Boilerman said:

Its always been the case in my view. I took a hire boat from Rugby down to Reading 10 or 12 years ago and the contrast in attitude to me from other boaters from when on my own boat to on the hire boat, I found shocking.
 

Never believed there was much difference in attitude until I actually spent a few days on a 70ft signwritten hire boat and experienced it first hand. 
 

 

Yep.

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3 minutes ago, Yellowback said:

Yep.

Ta. Suppose so. I used to deliver hire boats, never had a problem. Always took the life ring off the roof though!

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Much as I enjoyed Tim and Prue’s programmes (well, some of them) I don’t think their attitude to ‘contact sport’ helped the ‘them and us’ attitude between hirers and owners - I am aware that much of that was probably done for theatrical effect, but some believe anything on tv must be real!!

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Shiny boat refused to share hatton with us last year so we dashed down towpath and asked hire boat if they would wait 10 mins while we caught them up.

lovely dutch people who owned 2 boats in holland and were about to buy a narrowboat in uk. Spent the rest of the evening in the pub with them in warwick.

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6 hours ago, Mike the Boilerman said:

Its always been the case in my view. I took a hire boat from Rugby down to Reading 10 or 12 years ago and the contrast in attitude to me from other boaters from when on my own boat to on the hire boat, I found shocking.
 

Never believed there was much difference in attitude until I actually spent a few days on a 70ft signwritten hire boat and experienced it first hand. 
 

 

 

 

I had the opposite but displayed the same behavious. For years I hired and thought being ignored and "accomodated" was the norm. Then I hired a 66' Hudson with no markings (and no name iirc) and found everyone appears friendly and "involved" us in boaty chats. A little while after I hired an old trad with back cabin with no markings and found the same.

 

It seered into me that there IS a snobbery about.

 

What's wrong with hirers?  Their attitude is normally positive in the extreme.

 

One strange fellow had moored his boat so close to a narrow lock waiting to go up with a queue behind him that when I exited the lock I had to scrape slightly down his bote to get out the lock and he went bananas shouting about hirers don't have to pay for blacking.  I still remember his wifes face who was working the lock could see the fool had inflicted on himself.

Edited by mark99
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9 minutes ago, mark99 said:

What's wrong with hirers?  Their attitude is normally positive in the extreme.

 

I don't get it either, there is nothing wrong with hirers. If you get a bad experience sharing a lock, it will always be with a owner-boater.

 

Almost without exception hirers are having a lovely time, are keen to learn and engage with you, and enthusiastically drink in any advice or guidance you might have to offer. 

 

On reflection though, I suppose if a boat passes you too fast moored up, it is as likely to be a hire boat as a privateer...

 

 

Edited by Mike the Boilerman
missing words

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I like hire boats in the main, only the booze cruise usually single sex give problems. Many hire boat crews are much more eager to help at locks and they often have a crew of 4 or more so sharing locks is so easy. They move a lot and keep many of our canals in use, the continuous cruiser may move further in the year, but many do less distance than a hire boat does in a weekend. The canal system is slowly being allowed to either and only by using and complaining is any pressure applied to maintain, some houseboat types do not want a functioning system because then they would not have to move ever and nobody would come past to rock their boat. So please keep hiring.

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3 minutes ago, Mike the Boilerman said:

 

On reflection though, I suppose if a boat passes you too fast moored up, it is as likely to be a hire boat as a privateer...

 

I think that's about fifty fifty at best too.  Apart from the odd day boat that comes careering past my mooring a bit out of control. most of the speeding boats I've seen over the last few years haven't been obviously hired.  And all the ones who hold you up by crawling along at 1mph and refusing to let you past have been private!

Hire boaters are usually on holiday and looking to enjoy themselves and the scenery so I reckon they are usually the most cheerful souls around, as what mostly depresses us owners is the endless cost of repairing our boats....  They are on a schedule, which can lead to them being tired at the end of a day especially if they can't find a mooring, which again can lead to a bit of upping the pace, but it would be a less interesting place without them.

The majority of us users, hire, share and owner, are friendly enough. Apart from on political threads, obviously, but then that's not real life.

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Hired for a few years and didn't experience any of the prejudices mentioned here. We have owned our boat for 7 years now and, like the majority of us, make no distinction between hirers or anybody else. You should be judged by your actions not the name on your boat. We have shared wide locks with hirers many times and had no problems, on one occasion with a couple who were very nervous due to lack of experience and had not slept all night worrying about tackling the Hatton flight, we paired up with them and they were only too willing to learn and did a good job.

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It has become a Very Expensive hobby. There are two sorts of boaters, the 'haves' and the 'have not's'

 The 'haves' always pay people to do the work and repair everything on the boat, have expensive marina moorings, don't lie awake wondering how to pay for the licence and therefore have a huge sense of entitlement. The 'have not's' just do the best they can and get on with fixing and painting a somewhat tired boat and scrape the cost of licence, mooring, insurance, maintaining and BSS together. They have a sense of entitlement but smaller than the 'haves' Then there are hireboats,. Nobody likes them. Terrible generalisations but something that is quite common, very British, and not something that I have noticed much of abroad.

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In a similar vein, when we were still members of the working classes we had a shared boat and experienced on several occasions sniffy comments from boat owners along the lines of " well you only own a share not the boat " This, of course is tosh as you do have a vested interest in the welfare of the boat. This was in the days of the now defunct Ownerships and all the boats looked the same.

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17 minutes ago, nicknorman said:

I’m just trying to think of the last time we had an actual problem with a boat passing too fast. ... ... Nope, I can’t recall one. A few passing a bit faster than we would have done, but not causing an actual problem. Perhaps it is because we tie our boat up properly?

 

Do people actually have a problem with boats passing too fast, or is it just an opportunity for a bit of “tut-tutting” and feeling morally superior? Anyway, in the great scheme of canal annoyances it is, for us, somewhere right at the bottom and so far below noisy generators and engine running as to be inconsequential. Hire boats tend not to have frame generators, which is great!

 

I agree, my boat has never been damaged, never smashed a glass, never split the boiling water I spend all my time transferring from one container to the other. 'The problem' (if there is one) is the arrogance (if done deliberately) and sheer lack of consideration of failing to slow down.

 

I agree having 4" of water momentarily sucked out from under my boat and a bit of back-and-forth surge is no big deal, just mildly irritating, compared to the wrecking of a fine cold and sunny peaceful winter's Sunday morning by a frame genny firing up and running opposite for hours on end.  (Not that this has happened for a while now.) 

 

 

Edited by Mike the Boilerman
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Last summer, remember that?, whilst waiting to go down Foxton Locks, got chatting to a hire boater, once I had mentioned that I lived onboard I received loads of verbal abuse from the guy. eg. Oh! It’s people like you that use the canals and don’t contribute to the upkeep, us hirers have to pay extortionate costs to hire.

 

I realise this is rare and I took it with ample salt. I have helped hirers many times, always talk to them (cos I’m nosey and want to know who, what, when and how etc.)

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Just idle curiosity, I presume the hire companies pay the appropriate license fee for each boat and the appropriate fee for use of their bases. I imagine therefore that CRT make a shed load of money, especially from Black Prince and the other big companies. I suppose someone with a better grasp of numbers then I could actually sit down and work it out based on the number of boats owned by each company although why anyone would want to is beyond me so scrub round that one methinks.

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1 minute ago, colmac said:

Just idle curiosity, I presume the hire companies pay the appropriate license fee for each boat and the appropriate fee for use of their bases. I imagine therefore that CRT make a shed load of money, especially from Black Prince and the other big companies. I suppose someone with a better grasp of numbers then I could actually sit down and work it out based on the number of boats owned by each company although why anyone would want to is beyond me so scrub round that one methinks.

Yes hire boat licence fees are a lot more than leisure licence fees. But it is not just CRT who benefit, it is a number of canalside businesses too. Whilst the holidaying hire boater is enjoying a slap up meal in the canalside pub, and paying handsomely for it, the curmudgeonly private owner is sitting in their boat illuminated by a single bare white led light eating from a tin of beans heated on their stove, grumpily chuntering over all the annoying other boats he has encountered who did things slightly differently from the way he would have done it and cursing them for it. Desperate to be having the time of his life but failing miserably.

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55 minutes ago, Bee said:

It has become a Very Expensive hobby. There are two sorts of boaters, the 'haves' and the 'have not's'

 The 'haves' always pay people to do the work and repair everything on the boat, have expensive marina moorings, don't lie awake wondering how to pay for the licence and therefore have a huge sense of entitlement. The 'have not's' just do the best they can and get on with fixing and painting a somewhat tired boat and scrape the cost of licence, mooring, insurance, maintaining and BSS together. They have a sense of entitlement but smaller than the 'haves' Then there are hireboats,. Nobody likes them. Terrible generalisations but something that is quite common, very British, and not something that I have noticed much of abroad.

That is a terrible generalisation. I could probably put myself in the haves, but do absolutely everything i can on my boat myself, because i love it.
Its only stuff i am neither competent enough or confident enough to do i farm out.

in the past we have done everything from welding to rebuilding the engine to gas to plumbing to paint to a complete recabin and fit out. The boat became truely ours.

 

love is lying in a stinky dry dock in february hammering caulking in the bottom of your butty, because you want to do it yourself.

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4 minutes ago, roland elsdon said:

 

love is lying in a stinky dry dock in february hammering caulking in the bottom of your butty, because you want to do it yourself.

I find using jam and a knife is much easier.

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Our very first experience on a narrowboat was from Kate Boats at Warwick, First locks were Hatton flight and we were terrified. A lovely chap alone on his boat was waiting at the bottom for help the next day but said he'd take us up as long as we did the donkey work - his advice on so many things has been invaluable over the years. We didn't find any problems with peoples attitudes to a hire boat, maybe we were just lucky. We now always appreciate hirers as being the life blood of the canals and always help and are friendly when we come across them.

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