NABO comments on the July edition of CRT’s Towpath Mooring Project

There is an implication that NABO is supporting the recent and proposed changes to Visitor Moorings and that CRT are pro actively engaging with associations to formalise a national policy. This has certainly not been the case to date.

There has been one meeting back in March specifically to discuss visitor mooring strategy. At this meeting it was agreed that there would be no further changes to Visitor Moorings this year. There has been no further engagement despite CRT claiming  “Our Navigation Advisory Group, and representatives of national boating organisations, have been helping us to develop a national framework for visitor moorings designation and management”.

 Indeed below is a self explanatory extract from a recent email exchange with Richard Parry.

"It would appear that the current changes have come about through local discussions without apparently referring to any national framework or strategy. These changes clearly contradict the desire of all the National Associations at our meeting in March and impression given as a result of your subsequent statement to Sally Ash. You will no doubt appreciate this raises questions as to the rationale behind the meetings with the National Associations to discuss mooring strategies?"

Some of our members would no doubt say that this discredits all parties involved.

Proposed changes in our view should be made as a result of both local AND national discussions only then will the need of both local and visiting boaters who travel through these areas be met. We are sure that there are many more boaters visiting these changed areas from further afield or who are CC'ers, than visit from local marinas during peak periods.

However we look forward to meeting Dean and understanding who is accountable for a national policy on mooring issues and how proposed changes are to be made going forward to ensure that the current post decision "knee jerk" reactions of both CRT and the Associations are prevented.”

We are concerned that the message we seem to be getting rightly or wrongly from members and general boaters who are questioning the rationale behind some of these changes is that there seems to be a continuous programme of change primarily creating just 48hr moorings rather than a range of stay times. We had understood that associations, partnerships, CRT, NAG were all going to work together to look at demand and need that could enable us all to promote change regrettably there is no evidence of this from our perspective.

Mark Tizard & Mike Rodd