Broad beam owners to pay more

Published: Wednesday, 07 March 2018

THE long running controversy over broad beam boat licensing has been settled—they will pay more.

There has long been argument that owners of broad beam boats pay just the same licence fee as the owners of narrowboats, with owners of the latter particularly upset that the broad beams need the whole of a broad lock, whilst it will take two narrowboats.  Moorings of broad beams too has seen controversy, especially on limited width waterways. The new licencing rules just published by Canal & River Trust include up to 20% extra for broad beam boats, to be phased in over five years.

No change for continuous cruisers

Continuous cruisers however see no change to their boat licencing fees, after the strong objection to any increase by the very vocal National Bargee Travellers Association, though we are told: 'The Trust will be undertaking further work to develop a fair means of reflecting the benefits experienced by boaters without home moorings who remain in the most popular places like London'.  So perhaps there is to be an increase of some sort in the future.

The Trust however is pushing for boaters to use the internet to make payments, for though it is reducing the prompt payment amount, there will be a small saving for those making online payments.

Electric boats

The Trust is climbing on the current 'electric' bandwagon, by offering a discount for electric boats, 'to encourage greener boating', but there is no intimation how this is to be universally achieved.

It has stated that the full scope of changes will be phased in over a five years period so that there will be no sudden impact on boaters, and thought it tells that it intends to freeze underlying licence fees for 2019, this of course depends on prevailing price inflation, that will be taken into account.