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Canal & River Trust broadens online passage booking offer


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PRESS RELEASE

 

23rd October 2020  

 

CANAL & RIVER TRUST BROADENS ONLINE PASSAGE BOOKING OFFER

 

The Canal & River Trust is making journey-planning easier for boaters by making passage through more staffed locks and tunnels available to be booked in one place online. 

 

Boaters are asked to book passage in advance for some tidal and river locks, lock flights, long tunnels, and other structures like Anderton Boat Lift and the Ribble Link.  While a few of these structures can already be booked online via the Trust’s online licensing portal, many others have individual, local booking processes.

 

From 2 November 2020, boaters will now also be able to book the following passages online: Thames Lock; Braunston Tunnel; Saddington Tunnel; Blisworth Tunnel; Boston Tidal Lock; Newlay & Kirkstall Forge Locks; Bingley Three and Five Rise Locks; and Harecastle Tunnel.  They join the likes of Standedge Tunnel, Liverpool Link and the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park waterways which already use the online booking system.

 

Before they book passage, boaters will be able to see all the information they need, including any necessary dimensions, and opening days/times.

 

Jon Horsfall, head of customer service support at Canal & River Trust, said: “We are pleased to be extending our online passage booking offer.  We ask boaters to book passage through some of our structures in advance so our colleagues are prepared and boaters have a smooth, uninterrupted journey.  We’re committed to offering the best possible level of service to our customers and we believe boaters will appreciate a more modern booking process that’s available 24 hours a day, and a choice of how to interact with us. 

 

“We hope that, by reducing the admin, this will give boaters more of a chance to focus on the excitement of planning a cruise.  We are planning to bring even more of the booked passage structures into the online process ahead of next summer’s main cruising season.”

 

Boaters can find out more on the ‘Booking your passage online’ page of the Trust’s website.  Bookings can be made via the online licensing portal, in the ‘Bookings’ section.  The online system is already used by boaters for licence renewal, amending details and booking moorings.  Boaters will still be able to book by telephone if they are not able to book online.

 

-ends-

 

Please see the attached release for the full list of structures.

 

Fran Read

National press officer

I work Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays

M  07796 610 427

E  fran.read@canalrivertrust.org.uk

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I said it was the thin edge of the wedge - the wedge is getting thicker day by day.

 

Now you "can" book to make it esier for you - how long before it becomes mandatory to book everything, and, then pay a booking fee.

 

At this rate you'll soon have to book an engine start time each morning !!

 

And that's why 'I'm out' !

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16 minutes ago, matty40s said:

I wasnt aware I had to book Braunston , Saddington or Blisworth....

I wondered about these too and perhaps it is only wide beams which need to book. The press release doesn't say.

 

Haggis

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3 hours ago, Hudds Lad said:

that’ll be fun for Silsden, Snaygill & Pennine Cruiser boats then if they have to book for Bingley, i guess they’ll add Foulridge to that list before long then :( 

It's already chaos for the hirers at Heritage on the Macc as they'd get to the Harecastle on the afternoon they set out and with no safe moorings at the tunnel.

Edited by Arthur Marshall
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6 hours ago, matty40s said:

I wasnt aware I had to book Braunston , Saddington or Blisworth....

 

6 hours ago, haggis said:

I wondered about these too and perhaps it is only wide beams which need to book. The press release doesn't say.

 

Haggis

Given that Blisworth, Braunston and Saddington are listed but Crick and Husbands Bosworth aren’t then it would seem logical it is for wide beam passage.

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2 hours ago, Arthur Marshall said:

It's already chaos for the hirers at Heritage on the Macc as they'd get to the Harecastle on the afternoon they set out and with no safe moorings at the tunnel.

When we were last there I walked to the tunnel and there was I think 3 boats moored at the tunnel mouth overnight.

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8 minutes ago, Captain Pegg said:

 

Given that Blisworth, Braunston and Saddington are listed but Crick and Husbands Bosworth aren’t then it would seem logical it is for wide beam passage.

It maybe all part of the devious plan to get fat-boats restricted, you will note that the press release said :

 

7 hours ago, Ray T said:

Before they book passage, boaters will be able to see all the information they need, including any necessary dimensions, and opening days/times.

 

Now, it could be that the website booking can say "the computer says NO, you are too fat, unable to make a booking"

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6 hours ago, matty40s said:

I wasnt aware I had to book Braunston , Saddington or Blisworth....

For wide beams, it is just you can book it online now rather than however you had to do it before.

 

Whilst I don’t like all the booking of things like Harecastle, at least having it all in the same booking system makes it consistent and easy to do.

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22 minutes ago, john6767 said:

For wide beams, it is just you can book it online now rather than however you had to do it before.

 

Whilst I don’t like all the booking of things like Harecastle, at least having it all in the same booking system makes it consistent and easy to do.

It does if you've got internet on board. And you've got a decent connection.

The real problem, apart from Luddites, is that it all assumes that you know days before what time you're going to get to a place.  And if there's one thing we learnt this year, it's that anything can go wrong, any time.

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7 hours ago, Captain Pegg said:

 

Given that Blisworth, Braunston and Saddington are listed but Crick and Husbands Bosworth aren’t then it would seem logical it is for wide beam passage.

The word ‘logical’ doesn’t really apply to C&RT so assume nothing 

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9 hours ago, Arthur Marshall said:

It does if you've got internet on board. And you've got a decent connection.

The real problem, apart from Luddites, is that it all assumes that you know days before what time you're going to get to a place.  And if there's one thing we learnt this year, it's that anything can go wrong, any time.

That’s life, if you don’t have internet then your not part of society, it’s fact.  I did not say that booking was a good thing, but if you have to book then doing it with one consistent process has to be the right thing.  I think the Harecastle tunnel case was by sending a free form email, which suggests that a person was responding to this, which is a waste of resource and a menial task to have someone doing; it can be done adaquatly by a system.

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16 hours ago, Arthur Marshall said:

It's already chaos for the hirers at Heritage on the Macc as they'd get to the Harecastle on the afternoon they set out and with no safe moorings at the tunnel.

Maybe the hire company will pre-book enough spots for ALL their hire boats just IN CASE they decide to go that way, lets face it, its free to book so they lose nothing if the boats go the other way

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I remember having a chat with the keeper at the northern portal of Harecastle two seasons ago. He said there hadn't been any trouble at either end for a while and it was considered safe these days. There are a line of boats between the junction and the tunnel. None of them have their windows covered with screens. When we came through in the summer there were two boats overnighting at the entrance. 

 

Stopping at Red Bull or The Blue Bell has got to be better than the portal though.

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52 minutes ago, ditchcrawler said:

Maybe the hire company will pre-book enough spots for ALL their hire boats just IN CASE they decide to go that way, lets face it, its free to book so they lose nothing if the boats go the other way

That's the logical approach. If I'm not sure when I'll get there, i just book six spots over two days. Bit tough on everyone else, but there it is, it's what the system's for. Ludicrous.

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5 hours ago, john6767 said:

That’s life, if you don’t have internet then your not part of society, it’s fact. 

Sorry, but that's rubbish. That's like saying you don't have a life if you don't share everything on social media. There are many people who don't have internet.  Insisting that the only way to navigate the system is via IT is just stupid - half the time you can't even get a mobile phone signal. The lock keepers and tunnel blokes have got to be there anyway, as in the "boating season" there are always boats going through, so the only difference it makes it to mess up the boaters.

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17 minutes ago, Arthur Marshall said:

Sorry, but that's rubbish. That's like saying you don't have a life if you don't share everything on social media. There are many people who don't have internet.  Insisting that the only way to navigate the system is via IT is just stupid - half the time you can't even get a mobile phone signal. The lock keepers and tunnel blokes have got to be there anyway, as in the "boating season" there are always boats going through, so the only difference it makes it to mess up the boaters.

 

That's why CRT will book you in on the phone as well.  The call handler will just fill in the online booking form for you so don't require any specific knowledge of Harecastle tunnel.

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52 minutes ago, TheBiscuits said:

 

That's why CRT will book you in on the phone as well.  The call handler will just fill in the online booking form for you so don't require any specific knowledge of Harecastle tunnel.

No phone number on their notices any more, unless they've changed them again. There was at first, then they all got replaced leaving it off. And the same applies - phone reception is rubbish on the canal.

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On 23/10/2020 at 15:27, Ray T said:

Boaters will still be able to book by telephone if they are not able to book online.

 

It's in the press release, and it will be the usual 0303 040 4040 number.  You won't have to know who to ring or email, you'll just either use the online booking system or ring the callcentre and they'll fill it in for you.

 

The staff or volunteers at the tunnel probably won't be able or allowed to book you in.

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