Howard Anguish reports on the recent North East Local Waterways forum
I attended this on the 14th April. The venue was our usual one - the Wheatsheaf Conference Centre near Castleford - and was very well attended with a full house.
As far as the meeting was concerned, a forum is usually defined as a meeting where views are exchanged but for the first time in the NE there was no invitation given for input from the floor. Rather it was a set piece delivery of news and information by the local manager and others (including John Dodwell) and understandably, given the recent history of flood devastation in the region - especially the Calder & Hebble and also the Leeds area - the largest portion of the meeting was taken up by a very useful and interesting illustrated presentation by Mike Marshall, the local engineering manager, who took the meeting through the chronology of events and the efforts subsequently made by CRT staff and especially volunteers, to start the massive project to rebuild bridges, towpaths etc. Throughout the meeting praise was quite rightly given to the magnificent input provided by local volunteers and although it will still be some months before things are back to near normal, the situation would have been much worse without their efforts.
CRT have a web page called Boaters without a home mooring: How far is far enough?
They say A number of boaters have asked for clarification of the legal requirement to cruise throughout the period of their licence and, in particular, what is the minimum distance that should be covered in order to comply with the Trust’s Guidance for Boaters without a Home Mooring. This page should help.
It can be accessed here
They go on When our enforcement officers record sightings they now record which kilometre of each waterway the boat is on. You can see the locations of all of our kilometre lengths by checking our bespoke map.
This map is handy becasue there are no kilometer posts on the system. When the map opens there is a national view. Drill down into any area and when the detail comes up, it is possible to select any given place and the kilometer length is highlighted in lighter blue.
On 10 March 2016 CRT issued a press release UPDATE ON LICENSING PROCESS FOR BOATS WITHOUT HOME MOORINGS
CRT has updated its process for licensing boats without a home mooring.
From 1 May 2016 the Trust will no longer offer three month restricted licences to boaters who have not been meeting the terms of their ‘continuous cruiser’ licence. (Presumably this is the CRT interpretation of this.)
CRT say there are 5,000 boats without a home mooring having their their movement patterns reviewed prior to licence renewal. Since 1 May 2015, where CRT were unhappy about movement, licences for shorter durations (three or six months) were offered in 652 cases. CRT have also issued over 860 extended stays and equality adjustments for boaters without a home mooring.
The press release can be seen here here:
A CRT review of the process and further details including a map of national hot spots can be read here
NABO will comment in the next NABO News now in preparation.