The Middle level Commssioner have issued this statement
Following our consultation on proposals to amend the Commissioners’ Navigation legislation in the first half of this year, consideration of the responses and subsequent discussions with Parliamentary Counsel, the Commissioners have now presented a private Bill to Parliament seeking the necessary legislative amendments.
Do you have canal boat ancestors?
‘Spellweaver’ is a website devoted to tracing ancestors who were boaters or those who worked on the canals. The creator of the website says: “One of the things I’ve found useful in tracing my canal boat ancestors is newspaper articles, which can be pretty informative, giving details such as who the individual worked for, where they were living, and so forth, the kind of information which wasn't really readily available elsewhere. Hence this site”. For more information, go to www.spellweaver-online.co.uk
Winter’s on its way
Editor Peter Fellows hangs up his tiller pin for the year.
After the boat spent the summer on the River Great Ouse, my last cruise this year was back up the River Nene to Northampton, which coincided with the Indian summer at the beginning of October - wonderful to be in shirt-sleeves instead of waterproofs! The aim was to get the boat back onto the canals before winter storms made the Nene impassable, but we needn’t have worried: I travelled with a narrowboat having a draught of 30 inches, and they were told by the EA that, due to lack of rainfall in the catchment area, the river was too shallow for them to proceed and they should hole up in White Mills Marina until it rained again! Generally, the locks and river are well-maintained, so CRT will not have to incur vast expenditure if, or when, they take over the navigation, but there were a few places where tree growth restricted the river to a single boat width. This is not due to lack of cutting back over the last few years - some of these trees must be 20 years old.
Boats are built to keep water out, but this also makes them good containers for gases and fumes - especially carbon monoxide. ‘Black-spot’ colour-changing CO indicator cards are not good enough: they do not give an instant warning of dangerous CO levels and have no alarm to wake you up. CO alarms are designed to protect you from CO produced by incomplete combustion of any fuel (including LPG, coal, charcoal, wood, paraffin or diesel used in domestic appliances such as cookers, boilers, stoves, etc.), or from exhaust fumes from a boat’s engine or generator. The main causes of CO build-up in a cabin are faulty, badly maintained, or misused appliances and escaped flue gases from solid fuel stoves.