Archive for May, 2011

Moorings Proposals May 2011

Wednesday, May 25th, 2011

Bath to Dundas

  • Visitor moorings at Bath top lock to be 72 hours not 48.
  • Make the stretch opposite Bath Narrowboats “No mooring” and the laybys in Sydney Gardens “No mooring”.
  • Extend the length of 72 hour moorings at Darlington Wharf by 100 metres towards Folly footbridge, losing 100 metres of 14 day space. Extend the length of 24 hour moorings at Darlington Wharf by 100 metres, losing 100 metres of 72 hour space.
  • Change the 48 hour moorings opposite Kennet Park in Bathampton to 72 hours. Make Bathampton wharf (opposite the school) 24 hour mooring not 48.
  • Remove the permanent moorings at Bathampton and make the space between the end of the wharf and the winding hole 72 hours.
  • Make the stretch from the winding hole to Bathampton swing bridge 14 days (officially some of it was 48 hour but the signs had disappeared).
  • Relocate the permament moorings to the concrete stretch east of Bathampton swing bridge (opposite Jenks’s), losing 245 metres of 14 day space.
  • Make the 48 hour moorings at Claverton 72 hours and allow the Pumping Station to reserve 2 boat lengths on open days.
  • Reduce the permit-holder moorings at Claverton by 90 metres and make this 72 hours.
  • Make the stretch opposite Digger’s moorings at Millbrook swing bridge (west of Dundas) “No mooring”.
  • Reduce the length of the 72 hour moorings west of the turnover bridge at Dundas by half and make the other half 14 days.
  • Create 4 boat lengths of 24 hour moorings immediately west of the turnover bridge at Dundas, losing 4 boat lengths of 72 hour moorings.
  • Dundas basin to stay 24 hours but increase the 48 hour moorings east of the aqueduct to 72 hours.

Dundas to Bradford on Avon

  • Make two boat lengths by the bridge at Murhill (Easter Spot – bridge 174) 24 hours
  • Change the 48 hour moorings to 14 days west of Avoncliff aqueduct, but the canal is very shallow here.
  • Make the west corner of the aqueduct “no mooring” for safety reasons. Reduce the 24 hour moorings east of Avoncliff by 1 boat length and move the permit-holder moorings there west by 1 boat length, gaining 1 boat length of 14 day space.
  • Put a water tap and 4 boat lengths of permanent moorings west of Meadows (Smelly) bridge (173).
  • Make the 48 hour moorings above and below Bradford lock 72 hours.

Bradford on Avon to Devizes

  • Make the 48 hour moorings east of Bradford on Avon marina (the Street) and at Hilperton 72 hour.
  • Extend the 24 hour moorings at Semington to 120 metres.
  • It was also proposed to do away with all 48 hour moorings and make them either 24 or 72 hours.

    Other restrictions and charges There may be other restrictions such as:

    • Setting a minimum distance that a boat without a mooring (ie a continuous cruiser) must travel before turning round.
    • Limiting the time a boat without a mooring can stay in any one stretch of the canal per year and making a daily charge of around £20 to £40 to stay longer than this limit
    • A daily charge, around £20 to £40, for staying longer than the time limit on a visitor mooring, applicable to all boats.
    • These daily charges to double from around £20 to around £40 if not paid on the spot on the day.
    • Renewal of the boat licence to be refused unless outstanding charges are paid.

    Legal issues

    It may well be that British Waterways does not have the legal power to enforce these proposals. However, the point of the questionnaire is to find out what impact they will have on you.

  • Impact Assessment Questionnaire

    Wednesday, May 25th, 2011

    This questionnaire is being carried out by liveaboard boaters as part of the Equality Impact Assessment of the Local Mooring Strategy proposals for the western Kennet and Avon canal (Bath to Devizes). The purpose of this questionnaire is to find out what impact the proposed mooring restrictions will have on liveaboard boaters – most of whom don’t have moorings.

    Read more…

    Bona fide Insights

    Wednesday, May 18th, 2011

    A Letter from Simon Greer in this month’s NABO News give some insights into the workings of the committee reviewed BWs proposals for the 1995 Waterways Act

    Read more…

    BW v Davies sealed judgement

    Tuesday, May 17th, 2011

    The sealed judgement in BW v Paul Davies is now available as a public document.

    Read more…

    BW’s enforcement powers challenged in Local Mooring Strategy meeting

    Tuesday, May 17th, 2011

    The Kennet and Avon Local Mooring Strategy steering group held its eighth meeting on 9 May 2011. The National Bargee Travellers Association (NBTA) had written to the steering group and to BW stating that research has shown that BW does not have the legal power to set mooring restrictions of less than 14 days or to erect signs specifying compulsory mooring restrictions; that BW therefore does not have the power to compel boaters to pay overstaying charges, and that it does not have the power to impose fines for overstaying. The full letter and BW’s response is below.

    Read more…

    Want to mess about in a work boat again?

    Tuesday, May 17th, 2011

    The Kennet and Avon Canal Trust needs crew for the work boat Vale of Pewsey on Thursday 19th May starting from 9.30am and also on Friday 20th May. They will be clearing the wall below Bradford lock from Heaven Scent (Candle factory) along the boundary with Victory Field. This will take all day. On the Friday they plan to carry on cutting back the offside vegetation towards Avoncliff. Please email Derrick Hunt if you want to help. Volunteers don’t have to be members of the Trust. Contact

    Draft minutes, 1st April Local Mooring Strategy meeting

    Tuesday, May 17th, 2011

    Here are the draft minutes of the Local Mooring Strategy meeting held on 1st April

    Read more…

    Important boaters meeting! 24th May, Bradford on Avon

    Monday, May 16th, 2011

    There will be a Boaters Meeting on Tuesday 24th May 7.30pm upstairs at the Georgian Lodge Hotel, Bridge St, Bradford on Avon (by the library).

    To update you about the Local Mooring Strategy proposals, the recent court case and other recent developments.

    To discuss your response to the Local Mooring Strategy: we need to know what you think and what you want/ don’t want, so that we can tell BW.

    Please pass this message on to other boaters who may not have internet access. We are hoping to hold extra meetings in Bath and Devizes, but please come to this one if you can.


    Bedtime Reading – the new moorings guidance

    Monday, May 16th, 2011

    BW have issued “For discussion with representatives of national boating organisations” a revised version of the 2004 document “Moorings Guidance for Continuous Cruisers”.

    Mooring Guidance Continuous Cruising Revision April 2011

    British Waterways act illegally

    Saturday, May 14th, 2011

    or is the headline “Dog bites Man” ? We received this email from a boater on the Grand Union;

    already boaters on the Grand Union canal are being served patrol orders (for first offenses in at least one case) along with a copy of the press release from BW about the Paul Davies case and a letter warning that this case has set a legal precedent regarding live-aboard boaters, their observance (or not)of the cruising guidance and the options that are now open to BW in terms of punitive action in light of this case. This is aggressive and overtly threatening action. Regardless of the ins and outs of the initial issue (the continuous cruising guidance and legal powers (and questionable competency) of BW to enforce it), Paul Davies’ case cannot be used by BW to threaten people across the canal network with homelessness.

    The press release is currently the subject of complaint to BW. The complainant has taken legal advice from two experts including a senior barrister who opines that the press release is wrong both factually and in law as County Court judgements do not set precedent.

    The statement’s footnote to editors, reproduced in several publications, reads; ‘The decision of the Learned Judge in the case of British Waterways v Davies will be binding on lower courts (and District Judges) and persuasive on Circuit Judges throughout England and Wales’.

    The true legal position is that ‘The County Court is bound by all decisions of the higher courts, but its own decisions never create precedents’.

    But British Waterways chooses to ignore such irrelevant details as facts and law in order to push through its point of view.

    We urge each and every boater who has received one of these notices to complain to the Waterways Ombudsman. As is pointed out in Panda’s comment below this will have to follow 2 levels of complaint to BW, a time consuming and soul-sucking experience but it needs to be done.