Victor notices more exagerations!

Published: Saturday, 04 May 2024

THE Westminster Campaign Cruise organised to promote Fund British Waterways is tending to exaggerate somewhat.

Nowadays it seems to be the done thing with its Press Release telling that it supports 'to retain the nation’s 5,000 mile network of cherished canals and rivers'. Up from 2,000 as correctly told by Canal & River Trust...

Then we are told that a flotilla of around 30 boats, including commercial freight vessels and over 20 privately owned narrowboats from across the country, with some travelling over 350 miles! That's further than from Edinburgh! With no waterways!  And way further even than Land's End, with definitely no waterways!  What on earth do they hope to gain by such obvious exaggerations?

However, the boats will journey up the Thames, holding station off the Palace of Westminster from approximately 12.30 to 12.40pm on Wednesday 8th May.

Severe funding challenges

The  purpose of all this is to draw attention to the waterways’ severe funding challenges and the economic, ecological and health and wellbeing costs that the country would incur in neglecting this valuable public asset, we are told.

The event will also feature a number of short talks on board the viewing vessel MV Valulla from various people including one from GPS Marine Holdings Ltd. CEO John Spencer on the importance of commercial freight on the waterways.

What commercial freight is not told, as this has been trumpeted time and time again, but alas the canals are obviously unable to accommodate and Canal & River Trust stopped its freight interest some years ago.

What with the bottom so near the top of most waterways and a stoppage a day—it will most certainly keep the freight away!

Water gone

Quickly following the loss of the refuse collection at Cranfleet Lock on the Trent—that however could be temporaryyet another boaters' service lost.

This time its the Bettisfield water point on the Llangollen Canal, with one boater needing water at the point explaining: 'CaRT wants more cash from the boaters, in particular the continuous cruisers, because, allegedly, we use the facilities more than anybody else, but on the other hand take the very facilities we rely on away...


A boat has been discovered sunk in the middle of the Leeds & Liverpool Canal on Saturday—with no one aboard!

The problem with its location is that no other craft is able to pass. This is by Swine Lane Swing Bridge 198 near Riddlesden.

Attempts are being made to contact the owner so it can be arranged to be raised.

Scourge of the e-bikes

The powerful e-bikes distributed by the German company that can reach speeds of nearly 40mph are taking to the towpaths, with many incidents being reported, particularly on the Leeds & Liverpool Canal towpath, with numerous accidents reported in the Press in three different areas.

These bikes that are modified to reach double the legal speed limit are causing problems. as riders don't need any qualifications. It seems they also have inferior batteries as there have been reports of their batteries exploding.

Canal & River Trust has banned them from its towpaths.

Seven closed

The latest closure is the Severn, closed on Saturday.

It's obviously going to be a non-quickie as contractors are involved with Bevere Lock 7 closed with its damage significant, Keith Gudgin reports.

It is a failed sluice, with the fault being examined and a method of repair organised.  But it will require time to mobilise plant and equipment to the site that could be difficult.

Victor Swift—telling tales for 24 years


I'm sneaking in our Thomas's 'shack'/'cabin' as so called on social media...








And his bluebell wood behind...