The canals are an oasis of calm, peace and tranquility – and now of culture too, as The Piano Boat brings concert-hall level classical concerts to the inland waterways, courtesy Masa Tayama and Rhiana Henderson. Join me as I talk to them about the project, the hurdles they’ve had to overcome and their plans.
On May 29th this year, I was lucky enough to be invited to join Alan, Tina and Richard of NB Wobbly, to travel in convoy across The Wash with Jo, Michael and Lorna on NB Perseverance. This is quite an adventurous crossing for a narrowboat as they’re designed only for the flat calm waters of the canals or small rivers – and The Wash is pretty much open sea.
Partly because of a leak and partly because I never liked the tiles anyway, I have refurbished my shower cubicle with shower panels, stuck over the old tiles. This is the tale of how I did it.
Whether you’re a solo narrowboater or have plenty of crew aboard, there’s no doubt that at busy and long canal lock flights, a team of helpful volunteer lock-keepers can be a blessing to help you through. I spent a couple of days at Fradley Junction near Lichfield, talking to the volunteers as they prepare for the new boating season, and they explained what they do and why they do it.
Some footage filmed from summer-winter last year that I have now compiled, about the new cratch board and cratch cover I had made.
In part to prove I’m still alive, a brief selection of snowy scenes from the marina this morning.
A fireside chat where I update you on what my plans are for 2021 – which starts with taking a break for a couple of months.
I did a video about this very early on when I got the boat but I’ve changed the components since then so here’s the updated version.
An alternative to the tradition steel narrowboat, fibreglass (GRP) cruisers are long-established on British canals and rivers. Often cheaper to buy, both new and used, but with drawbacks such as a more fragile construction and less suitability for living aboard, especially in winter, they are a popular choice particularly on rivers. In this video, I speak to a chap who bought a Viking 26 and absolutely loves it.
For those on small or disconnected canals, who want a boat that can be taken out of the water easily and moved elsewhere, there is the Wilderness Trailboat; an incredibly cute, fibreglass (GRP) lightweight craft that you can practically put in your pocket!