THE publication The Toddler has given a massive blow to Canal & River Trust's 'Better by Water' campaign.
It disclosing that research was undertaken with parents and carers across England, and a massive 63% of people who responded stated they were deterred from visiting their local waterway with a child under five due to anxiety about them falling into the canal!
Yet stupidly, it is the trust's own fault, by deciding that the vegetation between the canal and towpath should be allowed to grow for the benefit of insects.
Can anyone tell me the sense in that?
And so you get a situation as in the picture (notice the two heads over the top of the vegetation?) where a child can easily decide to 'hide' in the undergrowth, and then slip into the canal and drown as the one in the Sheffield & South Yorkshire, bringing such utter despair to its parents.
But it certainly doesn't look good for CaRT's so called 'Better by Water' if so many people are too scared to visit, does it?
Errors in stoppage notices are coming fast and furious these days, adding to the confusion for boaters.
Canal & River Trust ended up with three this past week starting with a stoppage on the Regents Canal that was a month out!
Then we had the 're-scooped'—whatever that means—stoppage notice concerning the bottom lock on Hanwell Flight on the Grand Union, but left confused if the flight was open or closed—it suggested both!
Now another strange stoppage notice concerning the debris in the Stoubridge Canal by a bridge that was supposed to be cleared on Wednesday but wasn't, then supposed to be cleared on Friday but wasn't and still isn't.
But confused by the notice that it's 'Navigation: Open' then informed 'We are therefore hoping to have navigation open by then'. So is it open or isn't it?
This is sheer Incompetence, reflecting badly on management of the trust.
Yet another consultation
So there's to be yet another consultation, again about mooring, but this time in and around the fair city of Birmingham.
Once again it's being run by CaRT itself—that rather gives me a peculiar feeling about its results.
The other such consultation of the moorings on the Lee & Stort ended up with the loss of moorings and then later with long established moorings having their rings sawn off, as shown, that I'm sure was not what the results of the consultation gave.
But of course we only have CaRT's calculation of the results, they, as I mentioned, not being organised by a third party, that it should have been.
But then it could not already have been decided, eh?
It is around this time that people are planning either a cruise or a hire on the waterways, our getting many queries of the best waterway to cruise, that leaves us a quandary of what to tell them.
It's reached the stage where we no longer suggest a waterway but tell people it's now a matter of sheer pot luck, but perhaps to steer clear of the northern waterways with their never-ending stoppages.
What else can you do, eh?