Held in London, this meeting was well-attended and proved to be most intriguing. Chaired by Robert Gould, a member of the EA Board, the main purpose was to provide an update on the significant changes taking place within EA in terms of support for their navigational responsibilities. The underlying driving factor was the Government’s decision not, at this stage, to go ahead with the proposal for CRT to take over EA’s navigational responsibilities.

NINF met at the St Pancras Cruising Club on Saturday 9th February 2019 with all but 1 member bodies represented, together with the General Secretary, Michael Stimpson. This Forum continues to be a useful meeting point  bringing together navigational bodies involved in CRT, EA and other waterways.

EA Registration Charges Increase...

The EA consultation ran for six weeks in July and August 2018 and the results were published in November. There were 441 responses (from a boating population in excess of 34,000 – a response rate of around 1.3%). Unsurprisingly, 86% of respondents kept their boats on EA waters, with the majority (64%) owning motor cruisers and 17% owning narrowboats.

The National Inland Navigation Forum, NINF, met at the St Pancras Cruising Club on Saturday 24th October 2018. 6 of its member bodies (AWCC, NABO, RBOA, DBA, IWA & CBOA) were represented, together with the General Secretary, Michael Stimpson. This Forum is a useful meeting point bringing together navigational bodies involved in CRT, EA and other waterways. The following summarises some of the major items discussed.

NABO has responded strongly to the proposal to increase Registrations Charges.

“Whilst we accepted that the above-inflation increases introduced over the past year was acceptable (given that there had not been an increase for some years) we strongly believe that only a direct- inflation-based increase can be introduced across all EA waters. The proposal for continuing the differential figures for the 3 waterways is also not acceptable.

We also suggest that in your Table 2.2 all sources of income should be increased by the same amount and that the boat registration charges should not be expected to carry the load – this is simply wrong and unfair.

We would also like to see how your central costs compare to other similar government agencies.  We are not convinced that your agency is working in the most cost-efficient way when compared to others.”

NABO’s full submission will be available in the next NABO News.