IWA Responds to Scottish Canals26 October 2016
Scottish Canals is consulting stakeholders on a proposed pricing strategy. Amongst the concerns identified by IWA are:
- The lack of mention within the consultation documents as to the value and importance of boating as a critical activity to the sustainability and success of Scottish Canals, and that new boaters need to be encouraged by the provision of available and affordable services, moorings and facilities, particular on the Lowland Canals, which are underused and under-visited by boaters.
- That the pricing strategy does not take into account significant price increases that have already been implemented for navigation licences and mooring fees (both leisure and residential) in recent years.
- Lack of promised investment in Scottish Canals Living on Water initiative.
- The fact that the locks on the Forth & Clyde Canal are not currently available 7 days a week
- The use of two bedroomed flats as a benchmark. Simple examples show that the report has overstated the comparison in England and Wales.
- That the survey of facilities shows how poorly provisioned the Forth & Clyde and Union canals are, and that Scottish Canals has a long way to go to provide customer satisfaction at the level expected elsewhere in England and Wales.
In conclusion, IWA considers that fees on the waterways managed by Scottish Canals need to be affordable in order to increase the number of people using them, and to uphold the Scottish Government’s key aim of inclusivity. IWA's full response to Scottish Canals to this consultation is available by clicking here.