A number of liveaboard boaters on the K&A are Roving Canal Traders. Roving Traders have been facing problems with local authorities recently regarding their trading activities. Nevil Ingram of Justice for Roving Canal Traders writes:
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The deadline for completing the 2021 Census is the end of April, and the Census telephone helpline has added a special line for people living on boats or in caravans, vans, tents or other transient accommodation. This follows the severe difficulties that some liveaboard boaters experienced trying to get a Unique Access Code to do the census online. You can now call the Census helpline and select option 4 .
CRT has stated that it will remove any items left on or beside the towpath between Smelly Bridge (Bridge 173) and Avoncliff if these are not removed before April 2021. Due to the pandemic, CRT has provided a skip at Bridge 173 for boaters to dispose of any unwanted items.
CRT is threatening to terminate the licences of boaters who “persistently obstruct the towpath or use Trust land for storing items from their boat”. This is another reason to oppose and resist CRT’s proposed changes to the Boat Licence Terms and Conditions
Following the Government’s announcement of a ‘road map’ out of the current Coronavirus lockdown that began on 4th January, CRT has stated that it expects boat movement to remain limited to essential journeys only until 29th March 2021, and only limited local movement until 12th April 2021. Subject to further Government advice, CRT intends to resume enforcement of the 14-day rule from 12th April.
By mid-February 2021 the Government aimed to have all over-70s and people classed as clinically extremely vulnerable given their first of two vaccinations against Covid-19, but told people they should wait to be invited for their appointment. Now, the NHS wants anyone over 70 or clinically extremely vulnerable who has not had their first jab to contact them to get vaccinated.
CRT is to hold a virtual User Forum for Wales and South West region on Zoom on Wednesday 10th February at 5pm-7pm. This is an opportunity to raise issues that concern you, such as waterway maintenance, enforcement, and what CRT should be doing to protect liveaboard boaters during the Covid-19 pandemic and lockdowns.