Where is CART going?

Published: Friday, 07 July 2017

WHAT is it all about with the Canal & River Trust these days, where is it going? Asks James Henry.

I can no longer keep up with its seemingly never-ending things it is spending money on that have absolutely nothing to do with boating and the canals.

Sleeping policeman2Wooden cut-out

We have all read about them on this site, with a team dragging a wooden cut-out of a reclining policeman and asking cyclists to cut their pace on the towpaths, or some such slogan.  The people at CaRT do not seem to realise that it is not people out for a leisurely bike ride that causing the problem on the towpaths, but either those off to and from work or the Strava cyclists attempting to increase their speeds on the towpath that has been dedicated to this.

Many of us no doubt remember the spat between the editor [of narrowboatworld] and the CEO of CaRT, Richard Parry, when the latter said in his reply about those using the towpaths to increase their speeds that he would 'educate them'.  This must have been three or four years ago, yet all the 'education' are these cut-outs and signs to 'cut your pace', which will not have the slightest effect on someone late for work in the morning or hurrying home being late for his/her dinner after work. Only proper speed restriction methods will work.

8 ducks at playSigns

Then we have the plethora of signs, some telling people where they are, that I find quite insulting, but which now are getting rather tatty, but having signs for ducks to read shows the mentality of those at CaRT.

Perhaps it is done with a distorted sense of humour, which could possibly be okay if the money spend on such waste was not so urgently needed elsewhere.


Now it is canoes in tunnels, that as someone else stated is okay if boats are stopped to let a pack of them through like at Foulridge, but once they have 'tasted' paddling underground will some want to show others what it is like and risk it without boats first being halted. Human nature tells that of course they will.

We are told there are over 2,000 miles of waterway, so really, why should canoeists need a tunnel? It obviously increases CaRT's 'the waterways are for all' propaganda!


But obviously unable to get publications to actually publish its exaggerated, and often untrue press releases, CaRT has now resulted to paying for them to be included. The Guardian, that I know for certain is failing, being only too willing to accept.

And of course knowing the actual value of the contents the Guardian at least had the sense to insist that it was stated that CaRT had paid for them!

We know it is 'many thousands', but not how many—but there goes yet another few lock repairs.

So where is CaRT going? Perhaps someone could tell.