Friday, 1 April 2011

Continuous Cruisers

At long last the Continuous Cruiser situation has been taken to court. Article K&A Times No longer are itinerant boaters going to be able to say “Ah but it hasn’t been tested in court.” I dare say someone will insist it is taken to the High Court and waste even more of British Waterways (our) money trying to over turn this decision.

I have always maintained that BW’s Mooring Guidance was, to the vast majority of boaters, simple and that people place interpretations on the rules that simply were not there.

In the case of the K&A it is simply not possible to CC there full time. The Guidance say “ . . .and therefore requires progression around the network, or at least a significant part of it.

The K&A represents less than 2% of the system, which I think most right minded people would accept is not in any way ‘significant’. No single canal is ‘a significant part of the system’.

These are the rules:-


If a boat is licensed on a ‘continuous cruising’ basis it must move on a regular basis. This guidance seeks to explain in day to day terms the nature of the compulsory movement that must take place. [This is done because the actual Act of Parliament that allows CCing is difficult to understand. Maffi]

There are three key legal requirements :-

· the boat must genuinely be used for navigation throughout the period of the licence.

· unless a shorter time is specified by notice the boat must not stay in the same place for more than 14 days (or such longer period as is reasonable in the circumstances);


· it is the responsibility of the boater to satisfy BW that the above requirements are met.

Most of the rest of the document explains what is meant by certain words ‘Navigation’, ‘Place’ and the summary says in a nutshell

· Continuous cruisers must be engaged in a genuine progressive journey (a cruise) around the network, or a significant part of it.
· They must not stay moored in the same neighbourhood or locality for more than 14 days (unless special reasons prevent onward movement).
· It is the boater’s responsibility to satisfy BW that they keep to the rules.


Wiggins said...

From what I've read, this could be a BYO popcorn moment.

Mind you, I've never understood laws that refer to a reasonable person: the minutes laws (& more specifically byelaws) come into play, there are no reasonable people left.

Wiggins said...

Or have I been caught?


Maffi said...

No, but I might have been.


Norwegian Grads said...

Hey Maffi,

Long time no see, it was really nice to meet you last summer. We are currently planning our next narrowboat experience, and we were hoping to meet up with you this summer too. We therefore kindly ask you to post your plans for this summer so that we could coordinate our destinations and anchor up next to each other this summer too. See you soon, champ!

Norwegian Grads

Unknown said...

In your summary you paraphrase the interpretation that BW have chosen to on the Act - and which it has put forward as fact, that, "Continuous cruisers must be engaged in a genuine progressive journey (a cruise) around the network, or a significant part of it".

That has always been merely wishful thinking on the part of BW — and the Judge in the case of Paul Davies did no accept that interpretation of the conditions which are necessary for a boat user to be issued with a continuous Cruising licence.

The judgement in this case relates to the very specific circumstances of the case of Paul Davies and HIS use of HIS boat on the Kennet & Avon Canal.

There will be those who will try to promote this judgement as a binding legal precedent, which of course it is not — but clearly those with a duty to make decision in similar cases will look to see what others have done and will be affected by previous judgements to some degree.

The majority of Continuous Cruisers on the K&A cause absolutely no problem — hopefully Paul Davies' judgement will be a wake-up call for the small, but highly visible, minority who are what some see as a 'problem'.

Maffi said...

BW are a statuary body and like other statuary bodies, HSE to name but one, they are created by an act of parliament around which they make laws Whats ya problem? Under the terms of the CC mooring guidence which all CCers agree to; the K&A represents 2% of the system and is in no way significant. There is no canal that can be considered significant on its own.