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ElaineWalker

Horse boating

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12 hours ago, jeannette smith harrison said:

Yes this is or was the cottage at Norwood lower lock . the horse was originally from the jobs dairy down the road but got himself sacked because he would grab the milk bottles in his mouth a chuck them .As you can see us kids thought it good to line the bottles up for him to do his party trick. Magnetman do you know about the outside stairs & a hole cut into the lounge roof to make an indoor stairs ?

Lol, did wonder about the milk bottles, ??

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On 07/08/2018 at 09:25, X Alan W said:

Jack Roberts was involved with a horse drawn "Hostel" type holiday boat I believe Harry Arnold had some involvement IIRC they had 2 boats ( could be mistaken)There was also a company operating in the late 60's a horse drawn boat "Hostel craft" I towed them around the BCN a week view the canal architecture can't remember the exact problem with their horse but remember their crew saying it was a good thing they were not reliant on horse power due to the state of the tow path on some of the lesser used bits As I remember the "Curly Wurly " being pretty "Naff"

I have had the following send to the staff in a form of a 'report' from a guest member, the user left no name, however a copy is posted below for reference.

 

My mum and dad started hostlecraft at the watch house in stretford , there boat was called the aston and the horses name was mary a white shire. Harry arnold was involved so was eddie frankelton. My mum june davies is still alive today at the tender age of 95

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Horse boating was a core means of transport on the waterways and varied according to the type of transport needed. From the single horse, used to haul the general craft to the fly boat and the packet boat. Hauling narrow boats was one important trade, but there are also the barges and larger craft on ship canals where horses might be used. Then there is the team aspect, where canal carriers used horses for cartage purposes in towns and cities.\

 

It is a vast and wide subject to explore, as it looking for what remains. This would include the stables that once were common waterside features, to to less obvious accommodation at canal side public houses or public houses near the waterway.

 

This was, of  course, in a time when horses were common being used to haul road waggons, tramway waggons, wagons in  railway sidings, on colliery railways both above and below ground and many other uses. Moving hay and related feed materials was once common on inland navigation.

 

 

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Thankyou, though it was more on the anonymous post about the Hostel Craft at Stretford I was thinking of.

 

I'm currently working on a book on boat horses as part of my long-term work as a writer on horses in cultural history. I started this thread last year as I'm especially interested in personal stories and memories to go alongside my archive research. 

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As far as I know, Hostelcraft, running the "Pamela", ended up in the ownership of a gentleman called Neville New who I believed lived in Slough. 

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17 minutes ago, archie57 said:

As far as I know, Hostelcraft, running the "Pamela", ended up in the ownership of a gentleman called Neville New who I believed lived in Slough. 

I am sure I have a DVD somewhere with Pamela on it

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8 minutes ago, ditchcrawler said:

I am sure I have a DVD somewhere with Pamela on it

Didn't she work for Andersen Boats at Middlewich?  There are lots of DVDs of her out there ...

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Narrowboat  towing from the horse's point of view is the subject of an excellent song by Barry Goodman. 

http://www.waterwaysongs.co.uk/narrowboats_to_tow.htm

Narrow Boats to Tow

© Barry Goodman 2008

 

A dark and dismal morning in the middle of October,
Another day of toil in the bitter cold and rain.
Sixty tons of coal in the narrow boats behind me
As I start along the towpath once again.
Fetched from out the stables before the dawn was breaking,
Harnessed, fed and watered with the stars still in the sky;
Starting on the working day before the world is waking
With thirty miles to travel by and by.

Chorus:
I could have pulled a haywain, I could have pulled a hearse,
I could have pulled a brewer’s dray to quench the people’s thirst,
I could have pulled an omnibus, I might have pulled a plough,
But I’m a boathorse and I’ve narrow boats to tow.

Across the hedges, fields are shining silver in the sunlight,
And horses work in teams to plough the furrows straight and true;
Steaming through the shadows of a chilly winter’s morning,
Working horses with a long day’s graft to do.
The milk-float makes its daily rounds like clockwork every morning,
The carter carries cargoes from the village to the town;
On every cart and carriage there’s a horse to do the pulling:
It’s the horse that makes this busy world go round.

And as I walk the towpath on a glowing April morning,
The brasses on my harness flashing brightly in the sun,
I think about those horses who by fortune’s fickle calling
Are taken far away to pull a gun.
They fought against Napoleon, then went to the Crimea,
Where men and horses fought and died for honour and for gain,
Many were the Percherons that suffered in the carnage,
And never saw the April sun again.

In summer it’s the children who are quick to walk beside me,
To guide me on a towpath that I know so very well.
Each lock and bridge and aqueduct, each tunnel, lift and stable
Is a chapter in the story I can tell.
And when the towrope slackens and I know the day is ending,
In stables warm and cosy I can rest and ease the pain;
The boatman knows to treat me well, for first thing in the morning
I will start along the towpath once again.

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4 hours ago, archie57 said:

As far as I know, Hostelcraft, running the "Pamela", ended up in the ownership of a gentleman called Neville New who I believed lived in Slough. 

Photo of 'Pamela' and horse 'Jim' on Llangollen Canal, June 1973.  Everyone interested in my paddle-driven boat.

Except 'Jim', he has met me before, at Warwick, where he objected to my washing line, and we had to take it in before he would come past. (second pic).

Pamela.jpg

Jim.jpg

  • Greenie 1

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There was a horse drawn wide boat called Tuba on the GU in the 1960's which I believe operated as a trip boat, around Berkhamstead there are people on this forum who remember it better than me. No doubt they will be on at some time to confirm details in the meantime here are a couple of photos.

 

385167904_1969W.B.TubaHorse.jpg.60fa7d3a967a0964e73e6c9e35d81da9.jpg

 

735175757_1969W.B.Tuba02.jpg.ef6716ba9360e1da24ceafd91afa1a77.jpg

choose files... Click to choose files

 

1469460463_1969W.B_Tuba.jpg.9af4adb59ac716a33aeefc263f9848b8.jpg

 

There was another wide boat called Fleet, and I have a coiple of photos of that as well, but they are not my copyright. However, I am suere the owner will be on in a moment.

 

 

Edited by David Schweizer

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Tony Robinson was on the L&L on tv today, in an old episode of Walking with History, and he interviewed a family called Foster (?) who were all horse boaters in the past.

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Thanks - I've just moved house after a long five months of legal wrangling so I'm running behind schedule a bit but I'm working to catch up now - thanks for all of this information.

 

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Remember seeing 'Pamela' with horse back in the '70's, no idea what sort of boat it was or who built it. It was (is?) a pretty boat but I cannot work out the fore end of it at all, seems to have many bits of half round guards/rubbing strakes that make it look like a wooden boat.

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On 11/03/2019 at 09:50, dave moore said:

The late Jim Marshall had Pamela in the late 60s / early 70s, if I recall correctly.

Absolutely right, Dave.  I remember coming across them in various places around Suttons in the late 1960s.

 

Peter

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Pamela is a Bantock. One of the early ones. 

 

I passed it yesterday on the Thames at Oxford. Did not take a picture but its full steel cabin butty style back cabin and has been motorised retaining the original stern above the water. 

 

It had been sitting on the hard at Willow bridge marina for quite a while until about 10 years ago when someone bought it. It does move about . 

 

Sadly all the lovely 3inches rubbing strakes around the bows have been removed and replaced with welded steel strips. I know why this was done but it has spoilt the looks. Those lovely wide bands were a key component of the early bantocks. I'm a big fan of proper wide rubbing strakes. The d section ones. 

 

 

Edited by magnetman

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4 hours ago, magnetman said:

Pamela is a Bantock. One of the early ones. 

 

I passed it yesterday on the Thames at Oxford. Did not take a picture but its full steel cabin butty style back cabin and has been motorised retaining the original stern above the water. 

 

It had been sitting on the hard at Willow bridge marina for quite a while until about 10 years ago when someone bought it. It does move about . 

 

Sadly all the lovely 3inches rubbing strakes around the bows have been removed and replaced with welded steel strips. I know why this was done but it has spoilt the looks. Those lovely wide bands were a key component of the early bantocks. I'm a big fan of proper wide rubbing strakes. The d section ones. 

 

 

Was that work carried out at branston, I think I remember her in the shed there, but I could be wrong

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6 hours ago, magnetman said:

Pamela is a Bantock. One of the early ones. 

 

I passed it yesterday on the Thames at Oxford. Did not take a picture but its full steel cabin butty style back cabin and has been motorised retaining the original stern above the water. 

 

It had been sitting on the hard at Willow bridge marina for quite a while until about 10 years ago when someone bought it. It does move about . 

 

Sadly all the lovely 3inches rubbing strakes around the bows have been removed and replaced with welded steel strips. I know why this was done but it has spoilt the looks. Those lovely wide bands were a key component of the early bantocks. I'm a big fan of proper wide rubbing strakes. The d section ones. 

 

 

This is the problem - someone buys an old boat and alters it.  As he is entitled to do, it is his.  But a loss to history.

Some boats have spent longer as convertions, than they have in working condition.  Which is their historical state?

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On 09/03/2019 at 14:52, David Schweizer said:

There was a horse drawn wide boat called Tuba on the GU in the 1960's which I believe operated as a trip boat, around Berkhamstead there are people on this forum who remember it better than me. No doubt they will be on at some time to confirm details in the meantime here are a couple of photos.

 

385167904_1969W.B.TubaHorse.jpg.60fa7d3a967a0964e73e6c9e35d81da9.jpg

 

735175757_1969W.B.Tuba02.jpg.ef6716ba9360e1da24ceafd91afa1a77.jpg

choose files... Click to choose files

 

1469460463_1969W.B_Tuba.jpg.9af4adb59ac716a33aeefc263f9848b8.jpg

 

There was another wide boat called Fleet, and I have a coiple of photos of that as well, but they are not my copyright. However, I am suere the owner will be on in a moment.

 

 

First photo is my dad, Mike Baldey, with Selby (I think). My mum, Eva, is steering Tuba and that is me sat in front of her so late 60's. Not seen these photos before, thank you for sharing, would love to see more.

Horsebarge Hotels operated out of Berkhamsted travelling up and down the GU. We lived on Tuba (formerly Gwendoline) which also had a dining room where the guests ate. Fleet had cabins and an open seating area in the forepeak. When I had to go to school they were moored permamently in Berko, Fleet (formerly Aerial) was converted in to two flats which were rented out. My dad then bought a steel barge, Ben Klibrech, which he converted in to a horse drawn day trip barge. Apart from Selby we had three mares, Patience, Providence and Prudence.

I will post some photos of my own.

  • Greenie 2

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Hello Mike - that's great information. I started this thread because I'm writing a book on boat horses. I'd like a chat with you if you were willing. My email is j.elaine.walker@gmail.com.

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I will be in touch at the weekend Elaine. I have a 1970 Hostelcraft brochure complete with price list which I was going to post here but not sure if it contravenes copyright, maybe someone can confirm. 

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