Listening to boat owners, Speaking out for boat owners, Representing boat owners.


New NABO Council member from RCTA

We are delighted to welcome Paul Howland as a co-opted member of the NABO Council. Paul retired early as a joinery estimator and ISO Auditor, and with his partner,  Jennie, brought a sail-a-way shell and built their new home.

@NABO_Official's 1000th Twitter follower

By the time you read this, our Twitter feed @NABO_Official will probably have over 1000 followers. Whether you choose @NABO_Official Twitter or our National Association of Boat Owners Facebook group, it is easy to keep in touch with the hot issues that are important to boaters, without the superfluous interference you find on many groups. So, if you haven't followed us yet, now would be a good time.

And of course, if you want to keep up to date, you really should consider joining NABO. Our bi-monthly NABO News is full of opinions, articles and reports about what boaters really need to know. If you don't already belong to the National Association of Boat Owners, now would be a good time.
"A growing membership needs to be listened to."

NABO Terms and Conditions

NABO Council has approved changes to the terms and conditions that apply to the web site and social media, and ongoing Association membership.

These are absolutely necessary to protect the Association in its representative activities.

Use of the web site and social media imply acceptance, as does renewal of membership.

The revised terms can be read here

NABO publishes legal information

The National Association of Boat Owners (NABO) has for many years been concerned over some of the ways in which British Waterways (and latterly the Canal and River Trust – CRT) have interpreted the Acts of Parliament that govern the canal system.

NABO has in the past – and again recently – obtained advice from both Counsel and its own legal advisor on the relevant Acts of Parliament.  We made British Waterways aware of our opinion that it had exceeded its powers – but to little effect.  Earlier this year we brought these concerns to the attention of CRT Chief Executive Officer Richard Parry, and we have subsequently had meetings  with both him and Jackie Lewis (Head of Legal Affairs), in which we shared with them the legal opinions we had received.  Further dialogue is ongoing and, although it is clear that areas of disagreement remain, the discussions continue to be very constructive.

NABO has decided to publish the legal opinion it has obtained as a supplement to this month’s NABO News, together with our comments and CRT’s response. This material is also available on our website at and can be viewed on this link below. 

Link to NABO legal supplement.

NABO believes that with the increasing public discussions regarding enforcement, charges for overstaying, and the introduction of rules such as ‘no return within x days’  it is appropriate that our members and the wider boating public are made aware of the legal position as we understand it. We intend to remain a ‘critical friend’ of CRT, and to be proactive in our dialogue.

Further information on NABO membership can be obtained from This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Important note:

The legal supplement provided by NABO contains general information based on English law and, although we try to ensure that the content is accurate and up-to-date, no representation or warranty, express or implied, is made as to its accuracy or completeness and therefore the information and views expressed should not be relied upon. Readers should always seek appropriate legal advice before taking, or refraining from taking, any action. The contents of the supplement should not be construed as legal or other professional advice.

To the extent permitted by law, NABO disclaim liability for any loss (however caused) arising directly or indirectly from reliance on the information in this supplement.

NABO meets CRT to discuss legal issues

Notes from meeting between CRT and NABO held on 14th Jan 2014

Present: Richard Parry (RP), Jackie Lewis (JL), Mike Rodd (MGR), Mark Tizard (MT), Geoffrey Rogerson (GR).

The thrust of the meeting revolved around the NABO legal review which has been prepared and was due to be sent to members with the December issue of NABO News. This was held back in view of this present meeting.

MGR emphasised at the outset NABO’s desire to assist CRT in finding solutions to existing problems. He expressed NABO’s deep concern that certain of CRT /BW statements and policy documents were, in the view of NABO’s legal advisors, either illegal or illegitimate, and either without statutory power or exceeding statutory power.  In particular, NABO’s view is that section 43 of the Transport Act 1962 does not enable CRT to impose licence terms and conditions which go further than what is set out in section 17 of the British Waterways Act 1995.