It’s 18 months since I sold my canal boat, “Wreyland”, but I’ve just been back to see what the new owner has done with it – and it’s had quite the makeover!
I was kindly invited aboard NB Tranquility to see its one-of-a-kind (on the canals) electric propulsion system as well as the many other technical features of this intriguing boat.
In 2019, I made a video about the restoration of the Lichfield canal, which had been ongoing for several decades, powered largely by volunteers and donations. So many people asked me for an update that I’ve now gone back to see what’s changed and whether the pandemic brought things to a halt.
In July 2019, Toddbrook reservoir nearly breached which would have flooded the town of Whaley Bridge. Today, repairs and reconstruction are well underway so I went along to have a look.
This video profiles the incredible Edwin Fasham and his two custom-built canal boats, both of them unlike anything I’ve ever seen before and mostly hand-built by him in his back garden!
An all-electric narrowboat is now available for hire by the day so it’s a low-cost way to test the waters of near-silent narrowboating and leave no air pollution in your wake.
For single-handed canal boaters, shimmying up and down lock ladders or trying to get through swing bridges can be a huge nuisance. How much easier it would be if you could steer your boat with remote control! That’s exactly what Gill Gregory can do aboard “Desiderata” so I went to see the system in action.
Following on from the last video, about wooden narrowboats, which are quite rare on the canals, here’s another wooden narrowboat which is even rarer – a “fly boat”, the parcels service of the canal network.
The Wooden Canal Boat Society in Ashton-under-Lyne is a wonderful group of enthusiasts who not only renovate and bring new life to decaying ancient wooden narrowboats but also provide valuable services to the local community. And, curiously, the boats have been restoring the volunteers as well.
A few weeks ago I went past the well-known historic narrowboat “Dover” on the Grand Union Canal but its looks belie its actual interior so I went back for a proper snoop around.