THE National Bargee Travellers Association (NBTA), that represents many continuous cruisers, welcomes the results of the survey by Canal & River Trust that the waterways of London need more facilities for boaters.
In a statement for NBTA it states that the the Canal and River Trust (CaRT), and British Waterways before them, have been frustratingly unhelpful when it comes to the resources on which boat dwellers depend.
Facilities fall to wreck and ruin
We have seen many of our facilities fall to wreck and ruin, and/or been closed down. At one time, a water tap could be found at locks; as well as many more other facilities such as bins and sewage points across the network. Today, there is nowhere near the same number of facilities that there used to be.
CaRT has known for years that the number of boats in London has been increasing, yet they have still continued to close facilities and failed to provide adequate alternatives.
As such, we fully understand why the results of CaRT's survey show that boat dwellers' main concerns are to have access to more facilities and spaces to moor. We have seen many places where boats could once moor, become unusable, such as where concrete has replaced grass. Without mooring rings, we are unable to moor beside concrete towpaths.
No more facilities closed
We welcome the results of the survey for the demand of more facilities. We look forward to working with CaRT and others to materialise the provision of these overtly obvious needs such as more mooring rings and the installation of facilities which will suit the needs of the people using the waterways. We further demand that no more facilities are closed down and instead more be provided across the network.
National Bargee Travellers Association tells that it will work with any organisation, including CaRT, to make sure the needs of boat dwellers are met, and hopes the results of CaRT's survey will act as a blunt reminder that boat dwellers' basic needs are currently not being met, and CaRT must address this.