IWA Bulletin Mid-June 2013

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IWA Work Parties Other News

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Photo courtesy of the Watford Observer

Official Launch for IWA National Festival

To mark the launch of IWA's National Festival, which runs from Friday 19th to Sunday 21st July 2013 at Cassiobury Park, Watford, Festival Chairman Michael Stimpson presented the ‘Tiller Pin Trophy’ to The Mayor of Watford, Dorothy Thornhill, at a ceremony in the park held on 5th June.   The trophy remains with the host town until handed over to the town hosting the next event.

Around 400 boats, including historic working boats, are expected to line up along the Grand Union Canal.  The event is also renowned for its high quality entertainment and there is always something to keep everyone amused. 

The event is organised by a small army of about 300 volunteers gathered from IWA members, WRG, waterways enthusiasts and the local community.  Longstanding IWA member and Rickmansworth resident, Michael Stimpson, who has been appointed as this year’s Festival Chairman said:

 “I am proud and pleased to be nominated as this year’s Festival Chairman and excited to be leading a festival in my home county.  Cassiobury Park is a beautiful location and it will be a great opportunity for the local community to celebrate and support the wonderful waterway network that’s right on their doorstep.”

Commenting on Watford hosting the festival, elected Mayor of Watford, Dorothy Thornhill said:

"We are delighted that Watford was chosen by The Inland Waterways Association to host its annual celebration of the nation’s inland waterways. They are a precious part of our national heritage and I know the three-day festival promises to be a spectacular event in our much loved Cassiobury Park, along the banks of the Grand Union Canal."

Ian West, IWA Festivals Committee chairman summed up: 

“IWA's volunteers are delighted to stage the Waterways Festival in Watford and looking forward to welcoming thousands of people to Cassiobury Park and the Grand Union Canal. 

“It’s a chance to celebrate, support and find out more about our wonderful waterways and we would like as many people as possible to get involved and attend the regular public meetings in the run up to the event.”

Find out more about The Waterways Festival.

Photo: (L to R) Festival Chairman, Michael Stimpson, presents The Tiller Pin Trophy to elected Mayor of Watford, Dorothy Thornhill on the banks of the Grand Union Canal, Cassiobury Park, Watford.

IWA News

HS2 Rail Project

Gren Messham, a deputy chairman of IWA's Finance Comimittee who has considerable infrastructure experience in the water industry, has agreed to take on a new role to manage IWA's communications, campaign and consultation responses in respect of the HS2 rail project.

There is also a separate working group put together by Vaughan Welch, chairman of IWA's Restoration Committee, across affected IWA corporate members and Canal & River Trust representatives.  This latter group is largely looking at technical matters but, as a cross-organisation group facilitated by IWA, it cannot absolutely formulate IWA’s campaign and responses to consultations on the subject. 

The group headed by Gren Messham is, however, more wide ranging (see the Group's Terms of Reference), and will put together draft consultation responses for the national chairman to sign off, consolidating the work of Navigation and Restoration committees. 

IWA Consultation on HS2 Phase 1 Draft Environmental Statement

HS2 Ltd published two consultations on 16th May 2013; both close on 11th July.

Both consultations relate to the impact of HS2’s Phase 1 route from London Euston to Birmingham. The consultations also include a connection going north beyond Birmingham back into the existing West Coast Main Line, and two short ‘spurs’ to provide future connections to the next phase of HS2, running on to Leeds and to Manchester.

The consultations cover two areas. Firstly, a ‘Design Refinement’ consultation on some specific changes to the previously published (January 2012) route as a result of feedback, or engineering issues. Secondly, a draft Environmental Statement which covers the route in more detail, outlining its impact on the natural and built environment and in some cases the options considered in arriving at the current route. The second consultation includes the route changes outlined in the first one.

IWA is preparing a draft response to the consultation on the Environmental Statement, based on the impact that the route is likely to have on the waterways it passes close to, crosses over or otherwise impacts. We are interested in any comments you might have or want to make, and would like us to take into account.

To help you make these comments, we have prepared a summary of the draft Environmental Statement documents, along with draft notes for formulate IWA's response to the consultation.

We would be pleased to receive any feedback you would like to add to IWA’s proposed response, or any other parts of the document, ideally by email to hs2comments@waterways.org.uk heading your email ‘Draft ES Consultation’, or you can otherwise contact Gren Messham, who is putting together the response, via IWA Head Office.

Please submit comments by 12 noon on Friday 28th June, after which IWA's response to the consultation will be finalised for signing off by the National Chairman.


IWA National Festival Launches Craft Workshops in Watford

From painting traditional roses and castles or making your own fenders, knitting or decorative rope work, IWA's National Festival  has launched a mix of heritage and modern day crafts for visitors to try this year.

The creative workshops, which will run throughout the festival, have been designed to appeal to those who wish to learn more about the traditional crafts of the inland waterways or update their skills with new modern crafts such as big knitting.

Activities range from button and side fender making, traditional canal boat painting, willow weaving, rope splicing and new crafts. All the workshops are professionally tutored, so booking a place in advance is advised to avoid disappointment.

Craft Workshops can be booked now and the courses on offer are:
Beginner’s Introduction to Hand Painted Lettering (Tutor: Dave Moore)
Scumbling and Decorative Finishes (Tutor: Dave Moore)
Painting Traditional Rose and Castles (Tutor: Julie Tonkin)
Big Knitting (Tutor: Ingrid Wagner)
Willow Weaving (Tutor: tbc)
Button Fenders (Tutor: Dave Walker)
Side fenders (Tutor: Dave Walker and Bob Myall)
Rope Maintenance & Splicing (Tutor: Colin Grundy)

And new for 2013:
Ocean Plait Mat (Tutor: Bob Myall)

Find out more about IWA National Festival Craft Workshops.

To book a place please call 01494 783 453 ext 603 and ask for festival workshops.

WRG Launches Training Grant for Volunteers

WRG has launched a Training Award to assist with the cost of training volunteers in skills associated with inland waterways restoration. Restoration projects have become more complex over the years, requiring volunteers to operate large machinery, conduct extensive surveys and deal with increasingly demanding legislation, all to the very highest standards. The WRG Training Award aims to promote a more confident and skilled volunteer workforce. The criteria for the award are set deliberately wide and encourage applications from individuals as well as waterway societies who may wish to organise training for a group of volunteers.

This award can provide up to 75% of the direct costs (i.e. course costs, travel and accommodation expense) up to a maximum of £750.

Although there is a list of ‘preferred areas’ applications will be accepted for any area of training.

Restoration Skills of Particular Interest

Construction/ Restoration Techniques; Brickwork; Stonework; Woodwork; Ironwork; Bank Protection; Boat/engine restoration; Lifting and Handling; Plant; Any plant or equipment covered by WRG Driver Authorisation Scheme; Tirfor winches; Chainsaw, Strimmers and Forestry; Plant Maintenance; Environmental Science; Ecology Surveys; Nature Conservation; Design of mitigation measures; Hedge-laying; Project Skills; Safety Management; Heritage Management; Planning; Leadership; Quantity Surveying; Engineering Design; Archaeology/ Recording Techniques; First Aid.                   

How to Apply?

Training Grant - Application Form (pdf)
Training Grant - Fact Sheet (pdf) - to be read when completing application form.     

If you have any queries please contact Jenny Black on 01494 783 453 ext 604.

IWA Issues Advice on Himalayan Balsam

IWA has produced a leaflet giving information about Himalayan Balsam, which is an invasive non-native species that crowds out other plants.  This is part of the Association’s co-ordinated campaign of increased awareness and work parties with Canal & River Trust to limit the spread the plant, which threatens existing native wildlife along the inland waterways.

The leaflet includes information about how to identify the plant, a step-by-step guide to planning a Himalayan Balsam work party, and information about what walkers and boaters can do to help prevent the plant spreading further. 

Download the Himalayan Balsam leaflet (PDF).

Risk assessment templates are also available to download.

The leaflet has been produced with support from Canal & River Trust, and details of how to report locations of Himalayan Balsam, or make contact with the volunteering teams in order to organise a work party on CRT waterways, are included in the leaflet.

Himalayan Balsam was introduced to Britain in the mid 19th Century by Victorian gardeners and in recent years has become a problem on many waterways around the country.  It pulls up very easily and is completely non-toxic, making it an ideal task for a volunteer work party. 

Several work parties have already been planned around the canal system to clear stretches of this invasive plant which crowds out native plants, on waterways including the Calder & Hebble Navigation, Caldon Canal, Grand Union Canal, Pocklington Canal and the Staffordshire & Worcestershire Canal.  

Going on one of these work parties is a great activity for all the family (children must be accompanied and supervised).  Volunteers are advised to wear long trousers and long sleeves (as there may be nettles growing amongst the Balsam) and to wear stout shoes.  

If you know of any work parties already planned, or would like to suggest a location that would benefit from a Himalayan Balsam pulling session, please contact IWA’s Branch Campaign Team:  

Alison Smedley – 01538 385388 – alison.smedley@waterways.org.uk
Stefanie Preston – 01494 783453 – stefanie.preston@waterways.org.uk

River Severn – Upton Moorings
IWA local branches (Birmingham Black Country & Worcestershire, and Gloucestershire & Herefordshire) have supported boat-owners on the river Severn at Upton, where one of the very few moorings available for visiting boats was recently re-allocated by Canal & River Trust for use by a commercial trip boat, having stated that this was necessitated by the local authority introducing new access restrictions for coaches in the town centre.  The Town Council maintained, however, that this was not the case, and there was local upset at the absence of consultation before the Trust issued a notice advising the new restriction.  Mooring is extremely difficult in the area and the local view was that CRT had not considered Health & Safety implications. 

CRT proposed a revised arrangement in which the public trips on the trip boat would operate from its original moorings in the town at weekends, and the visitor mooring pontoon would only be used for scheduled charter trips for people arriving by coach on weekdays during the summer. 

CRT apologised for the lack of consultations and noted that they would revisit increasing the visitor moorings at Upton. Upton Town Council has since announced, however, that it believes it is 50% owner of the pontoon moorings, so its permission for any restriction is required, which it is not willing to give.

IWA is locally pursuing with CRT the provision of further visitor moorings in Upton, along with general issues affecting the River Severn such as lack of facilities, lack of moorings and restrictive opening times.  Lack of co-operation from local authorities in the Severn corridor is often a problem, though in this case Upton Town Council appears supportive of boaters and values the trade they bring to the town.

Activities at Wheelock Wharf

IWA North Staffordshire & South Cheshire Branch and the crew of the historic fly-boat Saturn hosted three days of activities in the June sunshine on the wharf at Wheelock, at the foot of Cheshire Locks. Access was given to the historic stables on the wharf, which remains in almost exactly the same condition as when last used by working boat horses over 50 years ago. These have not been opened up to the public for over a decade but owners CRT gave the organisers permission to use them for this special event.

On Thursday 7th June and Friday 8th June around 90 children from the local primary school came in groups to undertake a range of activities on the wharf, in the stables and on board Saturn. They learned about canal carrying, horse-boating and life afloat for children of boating families a century ago. A film about horse-boating made in 2002 and largely shot in and around the stables was also shown.

A Waterways Community Day was held on Saturday 8th June, with Branch members talking to local people about the Cheshire Locks Project and other branch activities in our area. The branch was joined by the Trent & Mersey Canal Society which had its own displaysl. Saturn was open to the public and an impromptu gathering of a number of working boats en route between festivals at Etruria and Middlewich also took place. All agreed that it had been a very successful and enjoyable three days.

Circumnavigation of Wales in an Inflatable Boat

Arnold Grayston. One man, one boat. Circumnavigating Wales via the the inland waterways, rivers and the Welsh coast. With one purpose, to raise money for Severn Hospice.

The journey was made in a RIB (rigid inflatable boat) via the River Severn, Bristol channel, Welsh coast, River Dee, Chester and back to Shrewsbury. Arnold began the journey at Shrewsbury Welsh Bridge on 24th May and arrived at Chester 10th June.

The route includes Rivers Morda, Vyrnwy, Severn, Bristol Channel, Swansea Bay, Carmarthen Bay, St Brides Bay, Cardigan Bay, Bardsey Island, Anglesea, River Dee, Shropshire Union, Llangollen and Montgomery Canals.

As the Dee Branch at Chester has not been navigated for over 4 years all the lock gates had become obstructed with silt. This request for a transit from the Dee was a great opportunity for the Mike Carter of the IWA Chester & Merseyside branch to ensure that the right of navigation was upheld.  Thus IWA members, JP Marine and other local volunteers worked with CRT to make the passage navigable up the Dee locks from the river.  CRT raked the silt from behind the gates of the River lock and volunteers cleared the remaining lock gates to enable the rib to exercise its right of navigation and make the journey 'all by water'.

A TV crew followed the rib and a program is due to be aired later in the year.

Further information is available on the All By Water website

snrt_cheque220Severn Navigation Presentation to IWA

A formal presentation was made by former directors of the Severn Navigation Restoration Trust to IWA National Chairman Les Etheridge at the Shrewsbury River Festival on 9th June 2013 in the presence of the Mayor and Mayoress of Shrewsbury Cllr. Jon and Mrs Diane Tandy.
The Severn Navigation Restoration Trust was wound up last year and handed over its resources, archives and more than £3,000 to IWA. Final Trust chairman David Struckett was accompanied by former directors Christine Wilkinson, Arthur Pagett and Susan Wilding.
David Struckett summarized the 30-year long campaign to restore navigation to Shrewsbury as being thwarted by difficulties. But he said: "Although the Trust had not built a navigation it had  learnt a lot about river conditions during ever-increasing abstraction rates, changing river authorities, and changes in emphasis regarding the requirements of fish, controlling water-levels in all conditions from flood to low-flow and hydro generation.”
He added: "The archives we've built up show how we can do things in an environmentally sensitive manner. We believe in solving all the problems, preferably, without having to limit the benefits. What we've learnt has been passed to IWA so that other rivers can benefit as well as the River Severn."
Mr Struckett handed a cheque for £3142.30 to the Mayor of Shrewsbury who, in turn, presented it to IWA national chairman Les Etheridge.
The Shrewsbury River Festival, with a pirate theme this year, was staged by Shrewsbury and Shropshire Waterways & Leisure Group in the Quarry park and on the River Severn town loop.  Dozens of children flocked to the IWA Shrewsbury District & North Wales Branch stand for the chance to make foghorns and pirate headbands while adults took the opportunity to watch canal videos and talk to experienced waterway users about holidays, day trips and restoration work camps.

A video of the presentation is now available to view on YouTube

Photo: L-R Les Etheridge, Shrewsbury Mayoress Mrs Diane Tandy and Mayor Cllr Jon Tandy, David Struckett, Christine Wilkinson and Arthur Pagett. Photo by Alan Wilding.

Chesterfield Canal Partnership
We regret to report that Dr. Geraint Coles is resigning as Development Manager of the Chesterfield Canal Partnership to take up a university lectureship.  After nine years work on the Chesterfield Canal, Geraint's future in the role was in doubt following last year’s cuts in local government funding, though this was resolved for the next two years by an IWA donation of up to GBP 30,000 from the Keith Ayling legacy. However, the proposals for the HS2 rail scheme crossing the yet to be restored section of the Chesterfield Canal have frozen grants from many possible funders. It may take up to 18 months to resolve the route issues during which time the Partnership continues to accrue costs.  Geraint felt it would be most effective and save the Partnership and IWA some money by resigning now.
Geraint's new role in academia focuses on industrial, maritime and transport heritage and will not curtail his interests in IWA restoration nor his contacts with the Chesterfield Canal Trust Ltd. The future of the Development Manager post will be discussed at the next meeting of the Chesterfield Canal Partnership Executive Steering Group in early July.

Updated IWA Website Volunteer Pages

The volunteer pages on IWA's website have been updated to contain additional information in a format that is more user friendly.

The landing page is now simplified and contains a Twitter feed from the new @IWA_Volunteer account.

The pages contain information about the volunteering opportunities that IWA offers. These can be further explored with links to pages giving a general outline of the main four volunteer categories (work parties, WRG, Branch Committee Members and National Committee Members), current vacancies and the reasons why people should volunteer with IWA.

Current volunteers haven’t been forgotten either! It’s hugely important the work they carry out is properly acknowledged, so we’ve a whole group of pages under the “Our Volunteers” tab dedicated to our volunteers. Here we have our “Volunteer of the Month” feature (this month it’s Christine Smith) where an interview with a different volunteer is shown each month, a selection of volunteer success stories and a page full of useful links for volunteers searching for the answer to their question.

It has also been made clear throughout the pages exactly who to contact if a current or prospective volunteer has a query.

Alison Smedley (volunteering with IWA Branches) alison.smedley@waterways.org.uk
Stefanie Preston
(volunteering with IWA Branches) stefanie.preston@waterways.org.uk
Jenny Black (volunteering with WRG) jenny.black@waterways.org.uk

About People

Former IWA National Chairman John Fletcher has become a proud father for the third time with the arrival of Jennifer Rae on 8th June.  Both mother (Kate) and daughter are home and progressing well.
David Struckett and John Reeve (North East Region nominee) have been appointed to IWA’s Navigation Committee.  Peter Scott and Alastair Chambers have retired as North East Region and Eastern Region nominees, respectively, to the Committee.  Eastern Region is seeking a new nominee for Navigation Committee as well as a successor region chairman (details in the current edition of Waterways magazine).  David Struckett also succeeded as chairman of IWA Birmingham Black Country and Worcestershire Branch  earlier this year on the retirement of David Pearson, and John Reeve is a former chairman of IWA North East Region.
Elsewhere in West Midlands Region, Helen Whitehouse has succeeded Mike Moorse as chairman of IWA Lichfield Branch, and Richard Sanders has succeeded Ian Jackson as chairman of IWA Warwickshire Branch. Roger Savage, who retired as chairman of Stoke-on-Trent Branch in 2012, has been appointed vice president of the branch.
In other regions, David Chapman (formerly a member of IWA Festivals Committee) has succeeded Peter Winter as chairman of Chiltern Branch and David Venn is now acting chairman of Peterborough Branch in succession to Alastair Chambers.  Nigel Long has retired as both secretary of Eastern Region and Peterborough Branch.  Roger Green is the new branch secretary.  Ron Heritage has succeeded Chris Wardley as chairman of Oxfordshire Branch and Brian Saunders is the new branch secretary.
Jane Elwell and Gren Messham have been appointed as directors of IWA’s trading subsidiary company Inland Waterways Enterprises Ltd.  Jane Elwell is a member of IWA Festivals committee, and Gren Messham is a deputy chairman of IWA’s Finance Committee.
David Carrington and Peter Martin have been appointed as directors of IWA’s subsidiary Essex Waterways Ltd, which runs the Chelmer & Blackwater Navigation.  David Carrington is a member of IWA’s Finance Committee, and Peter Martin, a long-time supporter of the Navigation, retired in May as leader of Essex County Council.

IWA Branch and Region Magazines

The following IWA region and branch magazines have been added to the website since the last edition of the Bulletin:

Birmingham, Black Country & Worcestershire - Worcester Bar - May 2013
Middlesex Branch - Middlesex Matters - Summer 2013
Peterborough Branch - Hereward - Summer 2013

The following IWA region and branch magazines have been added in recent weeks:

South East Region - Cargoes - Summer 2013

Chiltern Branch - Grapevine - Spring 2013
Ipswich Branch - Anglian Cuttings - Summer 2013

IWA Work Parties

Caldon Canal Work Party – 9th June 2013
Sunday 9th June saw IWA North Staffordshire and South Cheshire Branch carry out their first Sunday work party on the Caldon Canal. 

Following recent improvements to the towpath in the Cheddleton area, the group focussed on minor soft bank repairs alongside the towpath. A number of areas for work were identified by CRT and the group completed the insertion of timber shuttering in six areas near Basford Bridge Lane. Many thanks to all the volunteers who turned up for the day and the results speak for themselves.

In future months, these work parties will alternate between the second Thursday and second Sunday of the month.

Paddington Arm Clean-Up - 1st June 2013

IWA Middlesex Branch carried out a towpath clean-up on the Grand Union Canal, Paddington Arm, on Saturday 1st June 2013. This event was supported by C&RT who provided a work boat along with litter pickers, gloves etc.

Volunteers met at Bridge 20, Uxbridge Road, Southall. 14 participants split into two groups some heading in a Northerly direction and the reminder in a Southerly direction.

The areas between Bridges 19 and 21 were cleared. Volunteers then carried on in a Westerly direction along the Grand Union Canal main line as far as Bridge 200C in Hayes.
It was a very successful day and approximately 60 plastic bags of litter were collected.


Cheshire Locks Work Party - 30th May 2013

Thursday 30th May saw another warm and sunny day as the regular IWA Cheshire Lock volunteers were joined by a number of new volunteers at Wheelock Wharf on the Trent & Mersey Canal. The volunteers undertook a ‘clean up’ work party in advance of the planned Wheelock Community Day organised by the local IWA North Staffordshire and South Cheshire Branch in June.

The group carried out vegetation work around the former stables and in the Wharf area, uncovering the former wharf crane area and wharf moorings. In addition volunteers painted the stable doors, the services doors and other woodwork around the Wharf area. The are looked much smarter as a result of the work so many thanks to the volunteers who came along for the day and also to CRT for usual support in terms of materials.

Next month, the branch will return to Lock 51 on the Lawton Locks at Church Lawton. Volunteers will meet at 10am and continue until about 4pm. Further work parties will take place on Saturday 20th July and Tuesday 20th August as volunteers continue to work their way up the Cheshire Locks.

Anyone who would like to volunteer for all or part of these days is very welcome. All tools and materials are provided, however you need to wear old clothes and stout shoes or boots and bring waterproofs, just in case! All welcome for either the full day (10am – 4pm) or join us for part of the day.

If you have any questions regarding future working parties then please contact Bob Luscombe, bob.luscombe@waterways.org.uk Work Party Organiser, IWA North Staffordshire & South Cheshire Branch.

Lapworth Work Parties
IWA Warwickshire Branch continue to support the twice monthly work parties at Lapworth organised by CRT. 

Over the last few months work has included towpath improvements, vegetation clearance and painting. A lot of undergrowth and debris has been removed to improve the moorings and the flow of water in the by-washes. Ivy has been removed from the stonework of buildings, fencing has been replaced especially around the fishing pool, a sign survey has been completed and 30 bird boxes have been erected around the junction. 

There is now a programme of painting hand rails and lock gates underway to bring some uniformity to the locks. Work parties take place on the third Thursday and the third Saturday each month and anyone is welcome to join in.
Photo: Painting footbridges at Lapworth. Photo by Graham Nicholson.

IWA Volunteering Opportunities

IWA Branch Volunteer Vacancies:

Have a look at the list of volunteer opportunities within local IWA committees. There is a full list of volunteer opportunities within IWA branches at: www.waterways.org.uk/about/vacancies/vacancies

Other News

Waterway Partnerships – Annual Public Meetings 2013

Canal & River Trust’s Waterway Partnerships will be holding open meetings, which will be open to public attendance.

2013 dates are as follows:

Partnership Date of Meeting Time of Meeting Location
All Wales Not yet known Not yet known Not yet known
Central Shires 4th September 18:30 Barnton Turns Marina, nr Burton-upon-Trent
East Midlands

16th October

18:30-21:00 Not yet known
Kennet & Avon Not yet known Not yet known Not yet known
London 3rd July 17:30 for 18:15 to 21:00 Launch of environmental scheme and a networking session Wolff Olins, 10 Regents Wharf, London, N1 9RL
Manchester & Pennine September Not yet known Not yet known
Museums & Attractions Public meetings to be held at each M&A location Not yet known Not yet known
North East
22nd October Not yet known Not yet known
North Wales & Borders 25th September 19:00-21:00 (Refreshments from 18:30) Legends, Sunnybank Road, Crewe, Cheshire, CW2 8WD
North West 8th October 18:30 Not yet known
South East Already held on 5th June
South Wales & Severn September Not yet known Not yet known
West Midlands 18th June 18:30 Copthorne Hotel, Merry Hill Dudley, The Waterfront, Level St, Brierley Hill, Dudley, West Midlands, DY5 1UR


Scheme Launched to Tackle Crime on the Thames

Marine Watch, a registration scheme based on Neighbourhood Watch, has been launched on the Thames.

The police initiative currently includes waterways within the area covered by the Metropolitan Police. Waterways include the non-tidal river from Hampton to Teddington, the tidal Thames downstream to the QEII bridge at Dartford and London's canals.

Marine Watch encourages individuals and communities to set up watch groups. The marine unit and local police officers then work with these groups and individuals to identify and tackle suspicious behaviour to reduce crime and anti-social activity.

The police are also encouraging boaters to register boat details with them and advise marking property and registering it online. By doing so, boat owners make their property less attractive to thieves and more likely to be identified if recovered.

More information is available at the Metropolitan Police website

IWA Member Discounts and Special Offers

The following special offers are now available exclusively for IWA members:

  • Airedale Cruising - 10% Discount off skippered day cruises
  • Boatshed Grand Union - 10% discount on brokerage
  • Calcutt Boats - 5% Discount
  • Channel Glaze - 10% discount on double glazing for boats
  • Cotswold Outdoor - 10% discount
  • Europcar - Special hire rates to IWA members
  • Guildford Boat House- 20% discount
  • Grand Union Diesel Services - 5% discount
  • Lee Sanitation Ltd. - 10% on orders over £100
  • Midland Chandlers - 5% discount
  • Narrowboat Services - 10% discount
  • River Canal Rescue - up to 15% discount
  • RoadPro - 5% discount
  • UK Boat Hire - 15% discount
  • UltimateBerths.com - Free Listing
  • Willowbridge Marina - 10% discount on chandlery purchases and services in the yard
  • Worcester Marine Windows Ltd - 5% discount
  • Zead - Free postage and accessories

Please note: All discounts and offers are entirely at the organisers' discretion.

To see details of how to take advantage of these offers, please go to www.waterways.org.uk/support_us/members_area/member_discounts_special_offers_public

For IWA members who receive a printed copy of this bulletin in the post, please contact the membership team on 01494 783453 for the details of the offers.

Members can also support IWA with a NarrowBoat subscription

Boat Insurance

IWA has an arrangement with insurers Navigators & General and River Canal Rescue that provides top quality boat insurance and access to the basic waterway rescue service for boat owners, with the added benefit that every policy taken out and subsequently renewed helps IWA, and thus furthers our charitable work for the waterways. 

See more information about the IWA insurance scheme for boaters

Waterway Events

Mayors River Thames Festival 2013

The 2013 Mayor’s Thames Festival is being extended from a weekend of activities to span ten days of art, music, and educational events both on the water and along its banks and bridges.

The festival will be more focused on events inspired by the Thames and water-related issues and will take place from Friday 6th – Sunday 15th September.

Find out more about the Mayor's Thames Festival

Major IWA Festivals and Boat Rallies

19th - 21st July IWA National Festival - Cassiobury Park, Watford, Hertfordshire 

Other Festivals and Boat Rallies


17th - 24th June BCN Explorer Cruise B
20th - 23rd June Lymm Historic Transport Day
21st - 23rd June Newbury Waterways Festival
28th - 30th June Thwaite Mills Boat Gathering
29th - 30th June Chesterfield Canal Festival


5th - 7th July  Ware Boat Festival 2013 - Festival of London Waterways
5th - 7th July Guildford Festival Boat Gathering
6th - 7th July Stratford River Festival
12th - 13th July Evesham Festival
13th - 14th July Cosgrove Canal Festival
20th - 21st July Pershore Town River Festival
20th - 21st July Preston Riversway Festival
27th July Linslade Canal Festival
28th July Audlem Festival of Transport


10th - 11th August Blisworth Canal Festival
24th - 26th August
Outdoor Leisure Show
24th - 26th August North Cheshire Cruising Club Boat Gathering


1st September Angel Canal Festival - Festival of London Waterways
7th - 8th September Slough Canal Festival - Festival of London Waterways
6th - 15th September Mayor's River Thames Festival
13th - 15th September Burnley Canal Festival
14th - 15th September Village at War Weekend (Stoke Bruerne)
21st - 22nd September Whitchurch Gathering of Boats
21st - 22nd September Huddlesford Heritage Gathering


6th October Banbury Canal Day

Have you got a waterway event or activity to promote? - Anyone can add details of a waterways event or activity to this area on the website. You don’t even need to register with the website or provide any sort of password. Simply use the upload event form.

See IWA's Events Calendar for a full list of waterway events. You can also search by event type or find out what's going in on your area with the map search.

Upcoming Volunteer/Clean-up Events

18th June Work Party - Cheshire Locks, Trent & Mersey Canal (IWA N Staffordshire & S Cheshire Branch)
20th June Work Party - Lapworth (IWA Warwickshire Branch)
22nd June Work Party - Ware, River Lee (IWA Lee & Stort Branch)
22nd June Work Party - Greater Manchester (IWA Manchester Branch)
22nd - 23rd June Himalayan Balsam work party - Swansea Canal (Swansea Canal Society supported by IWA)
23rd June Bugsworth Basin Work Party (The Inland Waterways Protection Society)
23rd June Work Party at Brindley Bank, Rugeley (IWA Lichfield Branch)
27th June Himalayan Balsam work party - Caldon Canal (IWA N Staffs & S Cheshire Branch)
29th June Himalayan Balsam work party - Pocklington Canal (IWA East Yorkshire Branch)
2nd July Work Party - Northampton (IWA Northampton Branch)
5th July Himalayan Balsam Work Party - Staffs & Worcester Canal (IWA Birmingham, Black Country & Worcestershire)
7th July Bugsworth Basin Work Party (The Inland Waterways Protection Society)
11th July Work Party - Caldon Canal (IWA North Staffs & South Cheshire Branch)
12th July Work Party - Leeds & Liverpool Canal (IWA West Riding Branch)

To advertise your restoration/cleanup events in the bulletin please add details to IWA's events calendar

Upcoming Towpath Walks

21st June Leven Canal (IWA East Yorkshire Branch)
25th June Grand Union Canal, Leighton Buzzard (Railway & Canal Historical Society)
7th July London Towpath Walk (IWA London Region)
13th July Walk - Lugg Navigation (Friends of the Leominster Canal)

To advertise your towpath walks in the Bulletin, please add details to IWA's events calendar

Contact Us

IWA Head Office, Island House, Moor Road, Chesham, HP5 1WA

01494 783 453


Bulletin is edited by Gemma Bolton