Narrow Boat Worlds August poll about the £25 overstay charge was pulled because someone found a way to ‘fix’ it. This in itself is reprehensible, equally so is the editor, Tom Crossley, trying to make make out that the [incomplete] poll was conclusive when it was not allowed to run its course. I do not believe that any web site should be running polls on such important issues.
I do whole heartedly agree with Tom that visitor moorings should be just that moorings for visitors and not just parking lots for Continuous Avoiders, however, since the introduction of the ‘new‘ rules I don’t believe anything has changed other than CRT have abrogated their responsibilities to police the old rules and handed over the job of policing to a bunch of volunteers.
The moorings here at Thrupp are now, late September, not so chocca and moorings are available. I don’t think that has anything to do with the new rules. More to the point it has to do with the nights drawing in. Many of the hire boats that come on Fridays cannot now reach Thrupp before dark, instead spending their first night aboard at the Rock of Gibraltar in Enslow. Hence Thrupp doesn’t have to find births for 4/5 69 footers coming down from the north. Now if College Cruisers can make their customers stop before it gets dark Thrupp will be come quiet again. Of course the fact that all the marina moorers who clutter up the canals in the high season have gone home and their boats are tucked up for the winter has helped a great deal too.
I think the new mooring rules are a ‘sledge hammer to crack a nut’. The Cycling and Running Trust will tell us that the new system is a great success, but they will say that whether it is or not so that they can justify the money already spent. I of course, being against the whole scheme, am bound to say that that there appears to be no change. I may not be an expert on these things but visiting the canal once a week or once a fortnight is not as good as seeing it every day (between April 1st and now I have only been away 10 days).
Quite a notable problem that I doubt the CRT even know about is the privacy moorer. You know the guy who leaves a twenty-five foot gap between him and the next boat for ‘privacy’. With the number of boats on the system today we don’t have room for privacy, but do you ever see the volunteer police ask people to move up or notices asking to share rings/bollards? No! I have seen enough space for three sixty-foot boats wasted at Thrupp for the sake of privacy.
Maybe people should be licenced by ‘attitude’. If you want privacy you only get licenced to moor in the middle of nowhere. Or if you only want to come out for two weeks of the year you should be issued with a licence that only allows you to moor in December/January/February. Of course the solution to full visitor moorings and increasing numbers of boats is to increase the visitor moorings. Here in Thrupp we have lost four visitor moorings in the shakeup, three of which have become part of a ‘much needed’ conservation area (not).