The first two meetings of the Local Mooring Strategy Steering Group took place on 26 August and 21 September. Boaters attended both meetings, and there were also representatives from NABO and the RBOA. Much of the discussion in both meetings focused on whether BW had the legal powers to impose the restrictions they wish, which they have set out in their new policies (see our previous articles on BW’s new policies http://kanda.boatingcommunity.org.uk/wordpress/?p=1014 and http://kanda.boatingcommunity.org.uk/wordpress/?p=1001 ). The Local Mooring Strategy has a very limited remit, basically being about where geographically to impose the new restrictions between Bath and Foxhangers. According to BW, the new policies are not up for discussion. Despite attempts to convince BW that the restrictions they want to impose will be unenforceable if they are not legal, the Chair, BW’s Sally Ash, said at the last meeting that she was not concerned with the law.
Archive for September, 2010
We have had another message from boaters in London, to let us know that apparently around six policemen worked their way down the River Lea from Tottenham checking licences and making notes on Saturday 11 September. They asked at least one person who had a licenced boat for their personal details, which they made a note of. This person did supply this information (there is no legal requirement for one to supply the police with personal information unless arrested). A London boater said “I had what I would describe as a fairly unpleasant encounter with two of these policemen .
A recent survey shows that 100% of eighteen-year-olds living on boats in the Bradford on Avon area have gained places at Oxford University, proving that as a group we have more brain power than BW. Well, OK, that’s actually only one person! Congratulations to the student in question and best of luck with your studies!
The next Kennet and Avon Canal User Group meeting will take place next Wednesday 29 September 2010 at 7pm at the Kennet & Avon Trust Offices, The Wharf, Devizes – be there and put your views on the Local Mooring Strategy, dredging or the lack of it, maintenance, enforcement and anything else. Lifts may be available. If you can offer a lift or if you need one please email email@example.com
If you have items you want to be considered for the agenda, send them to: British Waterways, Bath Road, Devizes SN10 1QR or email them to firstname.lastname@example.org marked “Agenda”.
Important boaters’ meeting!! Tuesday 21 September 8pm upstairs at the Georgian Lodge, Bradford on Avon (opposite the library) To keep you informed of developments in BW’s local mooring strategy, how it affects you, and what we want from it.
We have just sent BW the message below in response to its draft policies for mooring along the banks of BW waterways.
The rationale behind the policies on short-term towpath mooring is to force boaters without moorings to pay more. BW makes this clear in its response to proposals by BWAF on revenue generation dated August 2010. In response to BWAF’s proposal for “Continuous Cruisers to pay more”, BW replied “The new approach to local mooring strategies is the beginning of this process. It is a top priority to develop this and the involvement of user groups including those represented on BWAF is vital”.
The fact that most of the proposed changes are not included in the local mooring strategy but in the national policies means that the local strategy will not be local but imposed from above. If implemented, the new policies affecting liveaboard boaters without moorings will result in large-scale homelessness.