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Dream On

A narrowboat abandoned in France

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Hello,

A small message to report you a narrowboat abandoned in France: it is the Bearly Afloat. A "trad" that seems abandoned to Saint Satur in the Cher. The town hall has filed a notice of abandonment on November 15, 2017. The boat will be sold or destroyed on May 15, 2018 if the owner does nothing.
Registration is not visible. Only the name of the boat "Bearly Afloat" and the names of the owners, or former owners, Danny & Sue Blackmore " are still visible.
If you know them, send the message.
Photo and notice of abandonment on my blog.

There is an option at the bottom right of the page to translate the text.

Best regards from France

Laurent

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The blog software can't translate the police notice, but that only adds a little more. If my French is correct, M. Cougot is some sort of police/legal official of the local council and tells us that the boat has not been moved or had any work done on it for several years. Very observant of him, I think he's in the right job.

If the owners are not found, what does the panel think the boat might be worth and who's going over to put in a cheeky offer to M. Cougot? Does he know about Apollo Duck? Looking on the bright side, it appears to be floating, always a good sign. I'm not in the market for what I suspect is a big project and only for the brave, I'm just being nosy.

 

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Yes, you are right about Mr. Cognot : he is the deputy mayor and the police officer of the city.
The boat is likely to be auctioned.

About the Blackmore family, I don't know... The front window of the boat is closed by a wooden plate and I think it is often visited by young people from the area.

And thanks for my great photos ;)

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They're a mysterious lot, the Blackmores.

I have a nice painting which my parents had when I was a boy and maybe well before that, a river landscape in fact, signed F W Blackmore 1926, and have been unable to find any information about this unsung artist.

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Intruiging, I would love to know the back story.

Oh, names painted on cabin sides don't mean anything. Our boat had the previous owners names on it for the five years we owned it, and still does AFAIK.

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If the owner doesn't come forward, and I have a hunch they won't, I hope someone is crazy enough to buy and restore this boat. If they are, maybe I'm crazy enough to crew for them to get it moved. On condition that they have a working bilge pump and provide life jackets; it's on the Loire which even that far up it is probably too deep to stand up in.

Do we have anyone on the spot to look the boat over? I'm sure M. Cougot would be helpful if he thinks it might lead to a sale.

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Yes, it's true that this can be the name of the old owners. The boat may have been bought by French, difficult to know because it has not been re-registered.


I am a bit far to go to see (300 km) but I have a French reader of the blog (he informed me about this boat), will take pictures in about ten days ...


I'm afraid it's a long adventure if the owners do not come back.
The town hall can not sell the boat itself: Bearly Afloat is on municipal land but it does not own the boat. Also, Mr Cougot can not help much, just inform and wait.
After 6 months of the notice of abandonment, the Court will seize the boat and put it on auction if it is still salable. If no one buys it, it will be destroyed.
Apart from finding the owners, it's hard to do a few things now ...
For those who want to buy it, they have a little time: they have until May 2018 to save money and prepare for a difficult adventure :)

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This is a very sad picture. Someone loved the boat enough to take it so many miles from home, doubtless imagining an idyllic waterborne life in the lovely Frnch countryside, and somehow it all went wrong. Head says that it's dilapidated and should be scrapped, heart says that I hope someone has the time and funds to care for it.

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Having looked at the fab fotographs on the blog it just reinforces to me what a stupid craft a narrowboat is anywhere other than the UK.

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10 minutes ago, mrsmelly said:

Having looked at the fab fotographs on the blog it just reinforces to me what a stupid craft a narrowboat is anywhere other than the UK.

I especially liked the dramatic snaps of the three péniches, with moineaux sipping from their gunwales, passing in convoy.

We've hire both a narrowboat and pénichettes in France and I must admit that, whilst a n/b offers a comforting familiarity, it does encounter some operating difficulties.

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http://dreamonnarrowboat.blogspot.co.uk/search/label/Photos anciennes    Culled from 'Dream On's' blog thingy, sections of peniche made into cabin homes - a few pics down the series - fascinating, reminds me a bit of the butty cabin that was at Braunston some years ago, rest of boat had been sawn off. 

Edited by Bee

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I really love those old photos of working craft. I sort of collect (well, accumulate) old postcards, and it's very interesting working out from them how boats were handled, particularly in horse boat times.

I do need to make a trip to Sancerre as we are out of Sauvignon Blanc and Alphonse Mellot there is our favourite, but I'm in the UK just now.

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Please excuse my English and my misunderstanding if I make mistakes in interpretation.

Of course, narrow boat are typical British boats but I think they also have their place on the French canals like Briair, Burgundy, Nivernais, Midi. This boat model is ideal for channels, not just for English channels.
There were French boats with equivalent dimensions and different aspects ("fûte of the berry" or Berrichon, "flûte of the Ourcq") but there is not enough to see them on the water.

I am not judgmental or opinionful about abandoning the boat. Perhaps the disease (or worse) kept the owner away. This poor boat is perhaps the visible face of another misfortune, even more serious ...

  • Greenie 1

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Looks like a quality hull and not too bad other than the faded paintwork. Very narrow stretch of water that it's moored on. I wonder which lister engine is fitted to it?

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1 hour ago, Bee said:

http://dreamonnarrowboat.blogspot.co.uk/search/label/Photos anciennes    Culled from 'Dream On's' blog thingy, sections of peniche made into cabin homes - a few pics down the series - fascinating, reminds me a bit of the butty cabin that was at Braunston some years ago, rest of boat had been sawn off. 

I've just spent a quite fascinating half-hour browsing through those photos, especially the ones of Paris. The village of old barge cabins looks very cosy - and I noted that, even in 1928, the author of the article was blaming an influx of foreigners for the shortage of affordable housing! plus ca change...

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4 minutes ago, Athy said:

plus ca change...

Ah, plus ça change, plus c'est la même chose.

Trans: "I want my money back and so does my mum."

  • Haha 1

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1 hour ago, Dream On said:

Please excuse my English and my misunderstanding if I make mistakes in interpretation.

Of course, narrow boat are typical British boats but I think they also have their place on the French canals like Briair, Burgundy, Nivernais, Midi. This boat model is ideal for channels, not just for English channels.
There were French boats with equivalent dimensions and different aspects ("fûte of the berry" or Berrichon, "flûte of the Ourcq") but there is not enough to see them on the water.

I am not judgmental or opinionful about abandoning the boat. Perhaps the disease (or worse) kept the owner away. This poor boat is perhaps the visible face of another misfortune, even more serious ...

Bonjour,

Your English is fine. Narrowboats are certainly not ideal on French canals other than the few little ones you mention, largely because it is not easy to get from one end to the other which is often essential in locks. Also it is easy to get a line jammed if all there is to tie to at the front is a tee stud. You possibly remember that I did discuss this with you and you gave me permission to use a photo of your boat on my site which I credited to you: http://www.bargehandling.com/Bargehandling.com/BARGE_HANDLING_BLOG/Entries/2016/11/2_Narrowboats_and_Widebeam_Craft_in_France.html  I also make suggestions that help make them safer.

Bien cordialement

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15 minutes ago, Tam & Di said:

Narrowboats are certainly not ideal on French canals other than the few little ones you mention, largely because it is not easy to get from one end to the other which is often essential in locks. Also it is easy to get a line jammed if all there is to tie to at the front is a tee stud.

Thanks for that most coherently-argued warning (whoops, I mean advice). After reading it I think I would no longer be keen on using a narrowboat anywhere in France bar the Canal du Berry (which has a small fleet of Springers).

Thanks also for the delicious expression "bateau saucisson" and for its appetising photographic accompaniment - though aren't those saucisses rather than saucissons?

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8 minutes ago, Athy said:

Thanks for that most coherently-argued warning (whoops, I mean advice). After reading it I think I would no longer be keen on using a narrowboat anywhere in France bar the Canal du Berry (which has a small fleet of Springers).

Thanks also for the delicious expression "bateau saucisson" and for its appetising photographic accompaniment - though aren't those saucisses rather than saucissons?

The look like Liverpool saucissons to me.

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Yes, dear Tam, I remember and I agree with you about mooring narrowboats in the big locks. Mooring forward and back is necessary in these locks and you need a good sailor in front of the boat to secure it.

My best regards,

Laurent

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Couple of pics of French 'Narrowboat' - Berrichon, easier to walk all around the boat and also has bollards in the middle which make life much easier.

2013-08-05 10.25.52.jpg

2013-08-05 10.26.37.jpg

Edited by Bee
  • Greenie 1
  • Happy 1

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