The drive for residentials

Published: Wednesday, 26 July 2017

MOORERS in British Waterways Marinas Ltd (BWML) marinas will be wall aware of its drive to accommodate more and more residentials, with Priory Marina the latest to be given permission for more.

Already having council permission for around 50 permanent residential moorings, Priory Marina on the River Great Ouse at Bedford, has been granted permission for a further 20.

Priory1More residential berths

BWML's other marinas are also applying for permission for more and more residential berths as it sees this as the way forward after losing so many moorers to the new marinas that offer more facilities. 

It was the former British Waterways that brought in the system to encourage marina building when inland boating was at its most popular, but with the downturn in boating and the drastic fall-off of narrowboat building when so many builders went out of business, there were then far too many berths available for the reduced number of boaters.

Two thirds full

It was two year ago that BWML admitted that its marinas, from many running at full capacity were then only two thirds full, and so the urge for residentials was born, to fill the empty spaces.


A further advantage is whereas many normal berth holders took the opportunity to move to the new marinas with more facilities, a resident, often being employed in the area, becomes a permanent fixture and is a guaranteed source of income, plus 'extras'.

The problem however sometimes arises that with limited berths, residentials with their increased income for the marina are given preference. It was last year that we were 'thrown off' our long occupied berth with the residents to a much less advantageous jetty.  Mind you there were plenty to choose from.

Priory Marina seems to be fairly full at the moment, as the pictures show, so it is not known whether normal berth holders will lose their moorings or be moved to make way for the extra residentials.