All-electric boat trips

Published: Wednesday, 07 October 2020

THE Bedford & Milton Keynes Waterway Trust is to get one of the UK’s first all-electric trip boats.

The MK Community Boat, commissioned yesterday, 6th October, by the Trust, will be completely eco-friendly.  Based on a 54ft long traditional narrowboat, it will use a ‘state of the art’ all-electric propulsion unit, instead of a traditional diesel engine. This will not only provide a unique experience by gliding almost silently along the canal, but also greatly reduce emissions.

Will launch in spring 2021

The cruises are scheduled to launch in the spring of 2021, and will operate from Campbell Park marina on the Grand Union Canal, cruising as far north as Cosgrove and south down to Fenny Stratford, providing an enjoyable and relaxing trip, whilst raising awareness of the benefits the proposed waterway park to local communities.

MJelectricBoatThe craft will carry 12 passengers and be fully accessible, with lavatory provision and an access lift for wheelchair users.  The service will run from March to December and carry up to 4,000 passengers a year on a wide variety of trips that will offer ‘something for everyone’—from short Santa cruises and Friday night ‘bubbles and bites’ to relaxing days out in nature and walkers’ one-way hops.


Funding for the boat has come from developers Crest Nicholson, via Milton Keynes Council, the Milton Keynes Community Foundation, Milton Keynes Parks Trust, together with donations from B&MK Trust members and volunteers.

It has been commissioned by the Bedford and Milton Keynes Waterway Trust who act as advocates for a new Waterway Park linking the Grand Union Canal with the River Great Ouse in Bedford. The proposed Waterway Park will bring enormous benefits for local communities, supporting green recovery and sustainable economic growth.

Jane Hamilton of the Bedford and Milton Keynes Trust, enthused:

“We are absolutely delighted be commissioning this new boat on 6th October.  It will bring a new and exciting attraction to Milton Keynes. I hope all communities in Milton Keynes will come to Campbell Wharf and take a relaxing trip on the Grand Union Canal, seeing Milton Keynes from the Grand Union Canal. The boat will be accessible to all and in keeping with the ethos of Milton Keynes benefit from innovative all-electric power.”