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Great Ouse Boating Association



FROM THE HELM Sadly, since the last copy of this magazine our Editor John Pridmore has stood down. During his time as editor John brought in many new features to the magazine which helped us win Gold in the Cambridgeshire community magazine awards scheme. With his forthright views and uncompromising journalism he will be missed. I would like to take this opportunity to thank John for his enthusiasm and commitment to GOBA over many years and I am sure you will all join me in wishing him every success for the future. Following John’s departure I am pleased to report that David Mercer has agreed to take on the role of Editor. David has been a keen supporter of GOBA for many years; congratulations to him on this his first edition of GOBA News. As always members of the committee continue to attend meetings both locally and nationally to represent the interests of our members and you can read their reports in this issue. Would you like to become a committee member? I have asked this question on numerous occasions with little success but there must be a member or two – Ladies or Gents - who could bring their particular skills, talents, energies

and ideas to the committee. Please feel free to contact myself or a committee member for more information. We will be pleased to hear from you. Even if you are not interested in becoming a member of the committee we do ask that you voice any concern you may have on boating related issues to any committee member, ensuring your views are voiced at the most appropriate meeting. Lately, we have been dealing with the issue of the Environment Agency’s intention to raise river licence fees by more than 30% over the next three years. GOBA finds this totally unacceptable, especially when our politicians are continually informing us all that we have to tighten our belts, be realistic and practise wage restraint. If we have to, then surely Government departments should lead the way. We will keep you informed on this issue. On a more positive note, the EA was intending to implement winter opening hours from October 1st at Hermitage Lock. With the wonderful October weather and after we reported some confusion over official notices advising

the new hours, I am pleased to say that the EA has kindly agreed to wait until November 1st before introducing the new hours this year. GOBA was asked to stage the St Ives Illuminated Boat Parade in August and committee member, Nigel Handscombe, kindly volunteered to organise the event. Unfortunately I was unable to attend but from all accounts it was quite a spectacular show. Many thanks go to Nigel and all the members who took part. Membership has again topped the magic number of 2000 boats; the more members the better as this enables us to become a stronger force locally and nationally to meet the many challenges ahead. Finally as I write this, sitting in the departure lounge at Malaga airport waiting to fly back to the UK, it is hard to imagine that by the time you read this it will be December. So let me close by taking this opportunity to wish you all a Happy Christmas. Roll on next year and the new boating season.

GOBA NEWS WINTER 2011 CONTENTS From the Helm NEWS Ambitious plans for Great Ouse at Bedford Go-ahead for new St Ives marina New name & logo for Waterways charity Dredging hopes 50 years ago... Red Diesel... the story continues... Delay for Kings Lynn pontoon Battle for Welches Dam lock Winter lock closures Licence fee fears St Ives Jubilee plans Wicken Fen tragedy


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COMMITTEE REPORTS General Secretary’s Report Membership & Treasury National Navigation Users’ Forum Mooring Matters

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FEATURES Laying up your Boat - an alternative River wedding ... and a river honeymoon A labour of love Bringing ‘Arachne’ home Ely’s Boatbuilder: The Appleyard & Lincoln story GOBA lights up St Ives

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Bedford Waterspace Study:

AMBITIOUS PLAN FOR GREAT OUSE AT BEDFORD GOBA’s Stuart Turvey reports:Bedford Borough Council (BBC) launched its ‘Waterspace Study’ on 30th September 2011. It was in October last year that BBC, in conjunction with the Environment Agency (EA) commissioned a firm of consultants to determine the development and use of the river Great Ouse within the borough from Bromham to Willington. Over the past year many groups, including GOBA, have attended consultative work parties to give their views on how the river and its facilities can be used and improved. The published report, running to over 100 pages, was the result of these consultations. There are several ideas, including new marinas, water parks, moorings and the

opportunity of further navigation towards Kempston and Bromham. Additionally, more provision is anticipated for canoe, cycle and pedestrian access. There is no real timescale for future development and it is, of course, reliant on money!



Exciting plans for brand new marina downstream of St Ives lock have been given the green light.

Ben and Sam Jones, third generation directors of Jones’ Boatyard, said: “We are all very happy that planning permission has been granted. The Great Ouse is a beautiful river and we hope the marina extension will give others the opportunity to enjoy it. So much has changed in boating in the 60 years that Jones Boatyard has been in operation, it is fantastic to have this chance to design a new marina basin from scratch. The first stage is to introduce modern mooring facilities but we also see it as an opportunity for everyone to access the river, either through the café with easy access for river walks, or through kayaking, or electric boat hire. We are very grateful to Huntingdonshire DC and everyone that has helped us along the journey to getting planning permission and are hoping to get the excavation started early 2012” In an update for GOBA News, Sam told us that work is currently focused on meeting some planning pre-conditions for a new entrance to the site in Low Road.

Full details of the report: business/strategies,_plans_and_research.aspx

The new charitable body expected to take over from British Waterways early in 2012 is to be called ‘Canal and River Trust’ with a new logo. The transitional trustees of the charity hope the name and logo will help promote the waterways as ‘a haven for people and nature’. Volunteering is to be encouraged as an essential part of the new structure through a number of local partnerships. In September, DEFRA published a summary of responses to the ‘New Era for the Waterways’ consultation. A decisive majority of respondents, including GOBA, supported the aim to include the Environment Agency navigations, including the Great Ouse, in the new trust in 2015. The final decision will be subject to the 2014 government spending review, affordability and the consent of the Canal and River Trust trustees. Fears were expressed about the lack

50 Years Ago... It was on 9th November 1961 that the Great Ouse River Board announced a £15,000 land drainage scheme at the derelict Cardington Lock. Work would involve clearing the lock chamber, lowering the floor, repairing the walls, installing a guillotine gate and dredging downstream. Alas, there would be no lower gates for navigation as this was not a requirement for land drainage. However, the announcement would provide great encouragement to members of the Great Ouse Restoration Society (GORS) who had been battling for over 10-years to re-open the long abandoned navigation from Tempsford

of emphasis given to navigation in the trust’s mission statement and vision and DEFRA has now asked the trustees to address this issue. Out of a total of 35 council members, just five will be drawn from private boating (i.e. licenceholders) with another two from boating business interests. It is still unclear how an apparent funding gap, estimated at £40m annually by the IWA, will be bridged by the new trust once existing government Grant-in-Aid is withdrawn. Some observers believe that it may take many more years than predicted for the trust’s charitable and other income to match the funding needed to maintain the canals and rivers.


In a surprise but welcome announcement made at September’s GOBA/EA liaison meeting the waterways team report that funding is being sought for dredging on the entire system with five sites earmarked for attention. “Not a moment too soon” say some boaters who have damaged props or been unable to navigate parts of the river this year. Dredging is, of course, a costly and controversial procedure with disposal of spoil now causing major problems. It was once seen as essential to maintain parts of the Great Ouse navigation but has not been undertaken extensively on a regular basis for many years. We can only wish the team success in their renewed efforts to deal with the problem of silting and shoaling on our river. to Bedford. If Cardington lock could be used by boats again it would add over a mile to the navigable stretch from Bedford and be a welcome boost to the campaign to re-open the rest of the river. The Society’s offer to raise the funds to pay for the bottom gates was accepted by the River Board. Work at Cardington started a year later and despite delay through severe winter weather was completed by early summer 1963. With this success on board and despite many further setbacks along the way, the GORS would maintain its sterling campaign of voluntary effort and significant fund-raising to eventually see the whole stretch re-opened to navigation in 1978.



There is disappointment amongst boaters that the promised visitor mooring pontoons alongside the South Quay at King’s Lynn have failed to appear this summer. Back in February, King’s Lynn and West Norfolk Council’s cabinet agreed to a proposal to install the floating pontoons, which it already owns, to make visiting the historic port town safer for boaters. At present, short-term mooring to visit the town is unsafe for small craft because of a tidal range of up to 6 metres or more, danger of bottoming-out and fast river flows. Boats awaiting the tide before crossing the Wash or returning to Denver must tie to bouys in the river with no safe access to the bank. The planned pontoons, attached to piles in the river, would provide safe access to South Quay at all states of the tide with a minimum one-metre draft. A budget of up to £150,000 was set aside for installation of the facility which was eventually expected to generate ongoing revenue for the town from mooring fees, increased tourism and economic activity. It appears that the project may now be rather more complex than originally envisaged, with various consents required, including final approval of the harbour authority, and some technical issues unresolved. Both coastal and inland boaters will be hoping to see progress with the visitor moorings next year. This would make a visit to King’s Lynn a safe and realistic possibility even before the development of a new marina which now appears unlikely in the near future.


Abandoned by the Environment Agency through lack of funds, Welches Dam lock was part of an important secondary route from the Old Bedford River on to the Middle Level system and is part of the Anglian waterways statutory navigation. As a matter of principle, the IWA is considering costly legal action in an attempt to enforce the EA’s statutory duty to maintain the navigation. Also being considered by local IWA branches is a pragmatic approach to the problem which has proved successful elsewhere. The idea is to acquire a temporary lease of the waterway from the EA and restore the lock using voluntary labour. However, a previous offer of assistance from the Waterways Recovery Group was rejected by the Agency.


Red Diesel:

The story continues The European Commission has confirmed action against the UK government’s interpretation of an EU Directive which it believes allows private pleasure craft to use Red Diesel. Justine Greening MP, Treasury Economic Secretary says that the UK complies fully with the directive and will continue to work with boaters to combat the EU threat. GOBA’s Mike Mackay continues to monitor the Red diesel / Bio diesel / Fame-or-no-Fame saga on our behalf, attending meetings and keeping abreast of all the technical complexities. He reminds us that bio diesel containing FAME (fatty acid methyl esters) can damage seals in marine diesel engines. FAME-free diesel, otherwise known as

Gas Oil, has no bio content. It is available in the fuel supply chain and despite rumours to the contrary there is no reason at present why marinas should not be able to supply FAME-free red diesel, other than an unwillingness of their suppliers to ship it. “It’s important that boaters know exactly what is being supplied” says Mike, “and you should always seek confirmation that your marina is filling your tank only with Fame-free fuel, or go elsewhere.”


celebrations ever held in the town. A street party has been arranged for Saturday 2 June where there will be a wide range of entertainment suitable for all the family including live music with Jive Swing Lindy hop dancers, Punch and Judy shows, children’s workshops and face painters to name just a few of the attractions. Many more events are planned over the extended Bank Holiday weekend including a river-based event. If you’d like to get involved in planning or assisting with the St Ives celebrations contact Annette Ablewhite on 01480 388931. GOBA News will provide an update on the plans in the spring issue. Please let us know what is planned to celebrate the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee events on your local part of the river.

• Work at Hermitage, Denver, Bottisham, Brampton and Godmanchester should be complete by the time you receive this edition of GOBA News. • St Ives lock will be closed until 29 February 2012 for major works. • St Neots lock will be closed between January and March (firm dates to be advised) for installation of a new guillotine gate.

Check with the EA or look on the GOBA website for any amendments: – uk/main.php?section=News|Lock_Closures_and_ Navigation_Notices


News of the Environment Agency’s proposal to increase licence fees by more than a third over the next three years has shocked the boating community. The Agency claims that additional revenue from boaters is required to meet a shortfall in government funding and maintain the waterway in a good state over the next few years. Sid Fisher reports elsewhere in this issue on representations made to the EA which, we hope, will have persuaded the Agency’s directors to agree a significantly lower increase at their November board meeting.


Members of local community and charity groups are working closely with St Ives Town Council with the aim of making the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee weekend next June one of the biggest and best

In the spring edition, GOBA News will publish a guide to diesel (and petrol) supplies on our river.


Two young brothers have died in a tragic September boating accident at Wicken Fen nature reserve, close to one of GOBA’s most secluded moorings. Luke Yardy, aged 17, died after falling from a rowing boat while trying to rescue an injured bird from the dense reeds. His half-brother, Ashley, 22, a trainee warden at the reserve, also died in an heroic attempt to save him. A memorial fund has raised £1,465, which will be used to place a pair of memorial benches and two oak trees at Kingfisher Bridge and in Stretham, where the pair lived, and some of the money will go towards a trust fund for Ashley’s oneyear-old son, Nathan.

Laying up your boat? Keep her in the water all winter, and enjoy the peace and quiet of the Fens at this time of year. If you’re downstream of Hermitage you’ll have none of the hassle of those of us further up river with Strong Stream Advice. Furthermore you will have no worries about lock closures such as St Ives which will be off for up to four months this winter ! You can cruise to Isleham, Brandon, Denver, Bottisham, Hermitage and Stoke Ferry without worrying at all about lock repairs or flood conditions. You will see amazing flocks of birds overwintering on the rivers, and those bright winter days with amazing visibility and crystal clear blue skies are some of the best ever. There are often some fantastic winter sunsets too. Two years ago, I cruised up from Godmanchester to Buckden in a thick blizzard. All was still and quiet, no one was about, and it remains one of my best memories on the river. The old saying that there is no such thing as bad weather, only wrong clothing applies here - just wrap up, and all will be fine. Lifejackets are recommended as falling in could be more serious in winter. Mooring up for the night somewhere is no problem as long as you have a webasto / eberspacher or similar heating system. A small Honda generator is a good idea so that you can run a DVD player in the long evening. Keep he diesel topped up to avoid condensation in the tank. The downside of course is the shortness of the days, and you will need two or three greenhouse heaters around the boat to keep the damp off. For me this is the best time of the year and I wouldn’t miss it at all. Ed: In or out of the water over the winter, it’s still vital, of course, that you take precautions against expensive frost damage.

GOBA member Andrew Beale suggests an alternative


Photo by Terence Read


Winter Checks How will you safeguard and protect your boat this winter? Insurers Navigators & General (N&G) offer the following advice to avoid the common claims. • Remove all expensive equipment such as radios, GPS, navigation and electronic equipment, TV’s, CD players etc and store them in a safe place. • Remove the outboard, tender and life-raft. • Leave empty lockers and drawers ajar to ventilate and deter thieves • Drain down water and heating systems. • Have engines professionally winterised or ensure that you carefully follow all of the manufacturer’s recommendations to avoid frost damage. • Remove berth cushions to a dry environment. • Ensure the yard use cross bracing if using wooden shores, for extra safety. • Ensure that whilst ashore the trim of the craft is correct, to allow cockpit drains to be effective, and avoid rainwater building up on decks or within the craft. • Do not tie covers or tarpaulins to wooden shores or cross bracing. • Preferably use only close fitting covers, to avoid additional windage. • Place tie-on labels on the wheel and engine controls to remind you to check all skin fittings, impellers, seacocks and transducers prior to launching/ starting the engine. • Disconnect batteries and leave them fully charged. • Check the craft periodically during the winter months, unless you have made a specific arrangement for this to be done on your behalf. Do not assume that the rental of space will include this service. • Avoid running fuel tanks too low due to risk of sucking dirt into filters or condensation in the tank space.

GEN SECRETARY’S REPORT Alistair Reid is GOBA’s General Secretary, responsible for all our official communications and committee correspondence.

Now that we are into the “Laying up” season I have to let you know that the GOBA committee will not be laying up as there are always a number of issues requiring our attention. Obviously the new Waterways Charity is still consuming part of our time, but other issues such as moorings, pump outs, navigation closures, navigation restrictions, water points and changes within the committee duties need attention as well. With regret we have had to give up the mooring at Gentles Hole as the land was not able to stand up to the horses grazing on it and the alternative of fencing off the bank was too expensive. Abuse of moorings is still a problem, ground fires being the main abuse. At a recent clean up at the Pike & Eel mooring (which could have done with a few more volunteers) half a dozen areas of grass had been burnt off where fires had been lit. With the exception of one, all the GOBA moorings are on someone else’s land and damage to that land could result in us losing a mooring. In July we had a visit from Fiona Wylie, chair of the Eastern Region RYA. Fiona outlined the aims and responsibilities of the RYA. We were urged to use the RYA legal Services if required. GOBA is affiliated to

the RYA with an annual fee of £100 but this is apparently set to rise to £1000. Fiona was unable to answer our question of ‘Why? but promised to come back with an answer. We asked if more emphasis could be given to inland boating in RYA articles. It was suggested that GOBA News could be a useful outlet.


At sometime in the future it is not going to be acceptable to discharge sewage from boats directly into the river, however before this happens it is necessary to have more pump-outs in operation on the system. With this in mind the Environment Agency has asked GOBA to help identify potential sites for pump-outs. These sites need to have access to water, power, and mains sewage. We have already identified St Neots and Wyboston Lakes as potential sites. If anyone has any other ideas please feed your thoughts back via someone on the committee. Water taps directly accessible from the bank are like hens’ teeth and

MEMBERSHIP & TREASURY Our Honorary Treasurer and Membership Secretary, Mike Mackay, is kept busy with all the GOBA membership and money matters.

We can, once again, celebrate an outstanding year for the Association. Following a slow start to the “joining season” for new and renewing members, followed by a mid summer rush, our membership has grown to a very healthy 2028 souls. This does not include the 78 free of charge odd members who include those who provide a service to GOBA or are libraries and the like. Unfortunately we still have some 28 members who pay their subscription by Bankers Order, often without any originator details. The value of these payments ranges from £4.00 to £10.00. As these members cannot be contacted their subscriptions are viewed as donations. Our increase in the cost of subscription should not need to be repeated in the near future. That is a very

dangerous statement for a treasurer to make, yet given the rate of inflation, predicted to drop during 2012, our positive membership numbers and the revenues from GOBA News advertising, the Association should be able to manage the progressive increase in the costs involved in providing moorings, their maintenance and our sundry other functions. The audit for 2010 can be seen in the website MEDIA section under the tab OTHER. On the subject of advertising, please try and use the services provided by our advertisers.


As always this, the winter edition of GOBA News, comes with your renewal notice. If

NATIONAL NAVIGATION USERS FORUM Sid Fisher, as the GOBA representative on important local and national committees dealing with navigation matters, presents his regular reports here.

The meeting of the National Navigation Users Forum (NNUF) was held on 23rd August 2011 at the Euston Methodist Conference Centre, London. Present were representatives from the Thames User Group, the Medway Users Group, Geoff Nickolds from the Nene and myself together representing the users of East Anglian Waterways, the IWA, the Dutch Barge Association, the British Marine Federation, and Residential Boat Owners Association. The Environment Agency was represented by river


managers from the Eastern, Thames, and Medway Rivers together with Stuart Taylor, Head of Navigation, and Andrew Guffogg, a newly appointed member of staff in charge of the move to the new waterways charity project and Angela Quayle, Head of licensing. Dr. Ruth Hall, national EA board member in charge of navigation, acted as chairman. The meeting was given a two-hour explanation by Stuart Taylor as to why the EA needed

efforts to get the one at St Neots Priory back in operation are being pursued without much success at present. St Ives lock closure has now been put back to 21 November; but completion time remains 29 February 2012. The original plan was to construct a coffer dam round the end of the lock to enable the cill to be repaired. The dam would have needed to go round the entrance to the lock and along the outside of the lock wall as the wall leaks. This has been superseded by a cunning plan to inject concrete under the existing cill without having to build a dam. This work will be carried out by a specialist company who are confident that it will be successful. Other work will be carried out to repair the brickwork inside the lock and complete the boarding on the downstream entrance. It was planned to close St Neots lock at the same time as St Ives, but the new gates will not be ready until the beginning of February and so will be out of action from then until the end of March.


There has been much discussion recently about etiquette in locks and on the navigation. The Environment Agency has agreed to put “switch off your engine” signs in locks.

These discussions led to an agreement that GOBA would produce text for a leaflet on general ‘river etiquette’ for lack of a better description. This would manifest itself as a tri-fold leaflet which the EA would print and circulate to be given to visitors to the Great Ouse, new boaters, people hiring boats on the system and anyone else who may need one. Sticking to the theme of locks, Anglian Water has carried out a successful trial with barges taking sewage from Ely to Kings Lynn. The idea is to save tanker miles on the roads. The one problem that the trial highlighted was a pinch point at Denver lock. With other boats waiting to use the lock the barges then missed the tide to go into the tidal river. If the barges used Denver lock it would have the positive effect of reducing silting in the tidal river. Two other plans are being considered, the first being to use the Relief Channel which would mean constructing a new lock at the far end to enable the barges to travel all the way to Kings Lynn. This would be a costly but very positive solution for all boaters as it would mean not having to run the gauntlet of the tidal river. The other plan would be to take the barges to the end of the channel and then put the contents back into tankers for onward transport to the treatment works. We await the outcome.

you have retired from GOBA and pay by Direct Debit (DD), then this will be your final edition and your DD mandate will lapse. If you are going to retire from GOBA then please let me know before the first of February 2012. Our DD collection run is done mid February. I have included a Direct Debit mandate on page 30 of this edition and would urge all those who pay by cheque or PayPal to complete a mandate and send it in. Direct Debit collections are the safest, cheapest and easiest route for you to pay and obviously for GOBA in subscription collection, though I do appreciate that many members have an inherent mistrust of the DD system. The uncertainty over the viability of the cheque is causing some problems. If you have embraced internet banking then you can use your online facility to pay subscriptions. Our bank sort code is 20 43 63 and the account number is 00419753 use your membership number as reference. It would also be useful

to email me with the following in the subject line “Subs payment of £18.00 from {your membership number}.” Remember that membership runs from January 1 to December 31 and must be paid during January. The current membership during March forms the base for the Spring News postings which include the GOBA sticker.

to increase charges. He claimed that navigation will need to meet the cost of weirs as the flood risk management department has stated thatit does not wish to cover the cost. He went on to state that construction costs are much higher than the rate of inflation and therefore suggested that the licence should be increased by 10% for each of the next 3 years making a total rise of 34.4% over that period. The main reason given was that the grant-in-aid has been reduced by the government and navigation has to bear its share of the costs. There followed a long and at times heated discussion by the representative members. who stated that to now increase the licence

fee by over 30% would be the death knell of many of the rivers, pushing users off the rivers thereby reducing the income to the agency. It was pointed out that many more boats than usual were up for sale due to fuel price increases and the uncertainty of the economy at the present time. During Stuart Taylor’s talk he suggested that it might be better to go back to each river having a separate charging policy. We quickly reminded him that during the last 5 years much work had been done to harmonise the charges of EA and if this were to happen all that work will be wasted. Licences in the Eastern Area of the EA were higher than those on the Thames, with fewer facilities, and if it were not for the moorings supplied by GOBA then the agency would be in serious trouble in this region. Therefore the charges


This year my attention was drawn to the retirement of four of our early GOBA members. Two had been members since 1975 and two since 1977. This small fact demanded a search of the database where I discovered that some 52 members have apparently been members of GOBA since 1974. I say apparently because the early beginnings of our MS Access database are shrouded in mystery and some slight confusion. The original data was, I assume, taken from paper records which I suspect have long gone. GOBA has no cen-


GOBA has formally objected to the proposed increase in licence fees over the next three years which would mean an increase of one third by year three. We have disagreed with not only the scale of the proposed increases but the formula used to calculate them. DEFRA has issued a consultation document on the disbanding of the Inland Waterways Advisory Council which we have responded to by saying that we think it should remain in place until at least 2016 as it is an informed body which can have a positive effect during the formation and initial running of the new waterways charity. As with all things, committees evolve. John Pridmore has resigned from the GOBA committee to move on to other things. John’s responsibilities have been split with David Mercer taking over as editor of GOBA News, John Hodgson producing the bulletins and Nigel Handscombe taking on the role of publicity officer.


tral office so our records as such are dispersed between several committee members. Our long serving members must have a whole wealth of experiences, stories, reminiscences and facts they could share with the membership. I hope that you may get in touch with the editor to share these with us. Back to our departing four, well actually seven - as you know, each membership covers a boat and there are three couples represented here. May I, on behalf of us all, wish Rose and Doug Ball, Babs and Ron Curtis, Eric and Doris Jefferies and Mr Bunyon a long and hearty retirement from the river system. Have a good holiday break and for those still in the water enjoy those calm and cool winter days out.


on the Thames should go up by a greater degree than those on the Great Ouse and Nene to reflect the poor quality of service that we receive. We further reminded the agency that many other businesses rely on the boaters for income and employment. If the number of boats reduced then the income to the local community would be lost. Angela Quayle then gave an update on the Inland Waterways Orde, informing the meeting that from next January next it is hoped to bring in a rolling year for licences which will help the licensing department. Instead of being overwhelmed in January and April they will eventually see a smoothing out of licence applications. It was suggested that, instead of the agency issuing licences, the DVLA might be better placed to carry out this work as a sub contractor. It would not matter to them



what the registered number was and they could also remind owners in the same way as they do for cars, and issue penalties for late or non-payers. We were then given an Operations feedback from each of the regions. • In Anglia almost 5,600 boats are registered, a few more than last year. However powered craft are down by 50 compared with last year. • The Enforcement Team has issued 178 tickets so far this year to the value of £64,000 of which £21,000 so far has been paid. 19 case files have been prepared and 8 court dates set. • Eastern area has received windfall moneys of £1.4m from within the agency and £15,000 towards progression of the Fens Waterways Link. • Grant in aid this year is £1.4m, £60,000 down on last year. • 78% of the 474 assets are in required condition, 5 are closed to the public. • Northampton marina is now almost completed and is 25% full of moorers.


The Regional Navigation Group meeting was held on 23rd September 2011 at Brampton with Irven Forbes, Regional Waterways Manager in the chair. Also in attendance were Dr. Ruth Hall and Stuart Taylor, together with representatives from the Great Ouse, Nene, and Ancholme from GOBA, IWA and the Association of Nene River Clubs (ANRC). The meeting was called specifically to discuss the proposed rise in licence fees. The format of the meeting was very similar to that of the NNUF. Following a presentation by Irven Forbes the meeting was opened for comments and after discussion by the members it was proposed that the rise in the fees for 2012 should not be more than 5%. It was stated by the members that no one could understand why the EA should seek an above-inflation increase in fees every time that this subject comes up for discussion. This was agreed by all the members and Dr. Ruth Hall stated that she would take that recommendation forward to the EA’s main board meeting in November where the next years licence rates will be decided. An extra item was tabled querying the cost of the recent dredging works that had taken place below Hemingford lock. This job was originally scheduled to be done in April, then in June and was finally done in August. The contract was to take 3 weeks at a cost of £53,000. In the end the job only took 5 working days. Nathan Arnold, Central Area Waterways team leader, stated that this was a fixed price contract. The contractor was able to carry out the job in a much quicker time frame but still received the contract sum although there is still some shoaling at the downstream end of the lock mooring. The Waterways team are now trying to get flood risk management to carry some of the cost so that the whole contract does not come from the navigation budget.


STOP PRESS Just as we go to press the EA has announced that navigation charges will increase by the consumer price index plus 2% per year in 2012, 2013 and 2014, subject to annual review. The increase for 2012 will total 6.4%. Charges for commercial users will be frozen at 2011 rates.


MOORING MATTERS Stuart Turvey and Roy Wood manage our priceless GOBA moorings, liaising with landowners, maintaining the sites and always looking for more.

Where did the summer go? Anyway, I hope you managed some pleasant cruising, enhanced by your GOBA moorings. As far as I am aware, all was well with the majority of GOBA moorings. We still have a complaint about the ‘rockery’ at Hemingford where rubble was left over from the EA flood defence work. They have been requested to remove it. I regret we had to give up ‘Gentles Hole’ at Brandon. The cost, with the other remedial work, was just not viable. From reports I have had, the ‘Stretham’ mooring has proved very popular. It is a pleasant spot and I am very grateful to the land owner, and to the EA for telling us about it. Roy Wood is still in negotiation with the EA and a farmer about a mooring on the Little Ouse. It has proved a little difficult to arrange a suitable meeting but Roy has not given up. We are also waiting for a site to be identified on the ‘Ten Mile Bank’. Members will recall that I mentioned the use of the mooring at the old ‘Anchor PH’ at Tempsford. Unfortunately, that use has been withdrawn due to rudeness and insensitive remarks made by a boater. I am looking for new moorings but it is becoming increasingly difficult finding suitable river bank. I am making enquiries regarding a couple of sites and will report back after the winter.

Roy and I will continue our searching and, as before, any member with a mooring suggestion please contact us and we will follow it up.

STUART TURVEY Roy adds: We had a report from the owners of our mooring at Wissington of some unacceptable behaviour. Please do not re-fuel on the river bank and refrain from using their shower facilities, as these are provided and paid for by caravan and camping customers. One of our members decided to shower his dog. The site owner was not impressed. Long boat members should check that they can turn at Wissington as it can be a slight problem. As Stuart has said, obtaining extra moorings can be difficult, so once again, please, at busy times, raft up if possible or maybe put your stern only on the end of the mooring, it will help others gain a space. I hope you all have a good winter and do not forget your anti-freeze procedures. Any doubt, please ring us.


Pike and Eel Work Party GOBA’s popular Pike and Eel mooring is back to its best after volunteer members spent a Saturday in August working their socks off! It was hard work but great fun. Thanks to everyone who took part. Total capacity of the mooring has been increased with the overgrown vegetation cut back and obstructions removed from water’s edge. Grass damaged GOBA’s nautical lumberjack, Dave Mole, tackles trees from by fires has been re- a dinghy seeded and the pathway linking the three individual mooring areas has been restored. Volunteers are needed for future events. Work, then party! Sign up on your member’s page on the website or contact any committee member and we’ll keep you informed.

River Wedding M

uch to my delight, earlier this year my daughter Penny announced she was getting married and that she and her Scottish fiancé wanted the ceremony and reception to be at The Pike & Eel in Needingworth where our boat Charlie Brown is moored. I couldn’t have been more pleased at their choice of venue but found out that nowadays the Pike & Eel Hotel don’t normally host weddings. They kindly made a special exception for us. The night prior to the wedding Penny stayed in the Old Ferryboat at Holywell and in the morning Charlie Brown was moored outside. Dressed from stem to stern with bunting, a vine heart and rope garlands all decorated with milky white roses intertwined with dark green ivy leaves. A sea horse mounted on the pulpit rail and a heart of cockleshells intertwined with Scottish thistles on the windscreen, she was ready to convey the bride-to-be down river. Penny’s first surprise was to see her Dad, not smartly dressed in a morning suit as expected but sporting a Johnny Depp moustache and beard wearing a pirate’s hat and waistcoat waiting to escort her across the grass to the boat.

Flotilla of boating friends

I was so proud to see my daughter looking radiantly stunning in her wedding dress acco panied by her equally gorgeous twin sister acting as maid of honour. Then, the first and thankfully only problem of the day was how to get Pen and her pristinely white but voluminous dress aboard intact. This was deftly accomplished with the aid of her sister Sam and her step brother Alex, although I have to say, the girls’ deck shoes looked a bit at odds with the rest of their finery. Having quickly recovered her composure, aided by a glass of ice cold bubbly, Pen was delighted to be accompanied on her journey aboard Charlie Brown by a flotilla of friends on their boats all brightly decked out with a profusion of bunting and balloons, raucously sounding their horns. The convoy included: Highlander, Juno Delphinus, Kurumba, Lady Lynda, Leviathan, Paladin, Persuasion, Queen Maeve and White Lady. As we approached the Pike we were greeted by a piper, (kindly provided by a Scottish friend), in full regalia standing on the landing stage playing The Skye Boat Song. Chris the groom and his family and friends from Scotland were also resplendent in their kilts, dress shirts and jackets. As Charlie Brown cautiously nudged alongside the landing stage to disembark its precious cargo, the accompanying procession of boats spontaneously circled and pirouetted abeam of us before returning to their moorings. My daughter and I were then piped into a very moving civil cer-

Penny, Chris and Charlie Brown emony held in the hotel with emotive readings by Maureen and Dorothy, the mothers of the bride and groom. I would add that by this time I had discarded the pirate’s garb, reluctantly removed the beard and moustache and was suitably attired in morning dress.

Stunningly beautiful

It was the 10th of September and we were starting to feel the windy affects of the tail end of hurricane Katia that had crossed the Atlantic but during the photos and drinks on the lawn it remained dry and bright with cloudy blue skies. As Penny was being photographed in front of Charlie Brown, I mentioned to my partner Anne how stunningly beautiful she was, Anne replied that she had never seen my daughter looking so lovely, I didn’t have the heart to tell her that I was referring to my boat! We were then served an excellent wedding breakfast in the Garden Room restaurant and my Wedding fleet heartfelt thanks go to Luigi, the chefs, waitresses and bar staff for all their enthusiastic efforts in making the day so perfect. To compliment the nautical theme, the tables were decorated with yachts, lighthouses and seashells in place of the normal flowers. My niece even brought blue napkins and table runners all the way from her seafood restaurant in Florida to complete the setting. In the evening we had a disco in the hotel and during a break the piper regaled us with a much appreciated selection of stirring Scottish tunes and reels. Later on, my boating friends, Al and Dee from Highlander and Smudge and Nat from Iceni with help from many others, laid on a fantastic barbecue in two gazebos beautifully adorned with grape vines and coloured lights giving the atmosphere of an enchanted fairy grotto. Then, just when you thought it couldn’t get any better, there was an ear splitting crash from the darkness on the opposite bank heralding the start of a firework display provided by the crew of White Lady, lighting up the night sky with a profusion of glittering colours. It was a fantastic, memorable day for the newlyweds Penny and Chris, made possible by the help and goodwill of so many people. And next season, I am looking forward to a succession of my new relatives and friends from north of the border revisiting our wonderful river.


...and a river honeymoon

embers who read the GOBA forum may well remember a posting M last year from Mark Windsor-Hampton requesting information about navigation from the Nene to the Ouse as he planned for a forthcoming

honeymoon cruise. Well, GOBA is very pleased to announce Mark and Joanne were married (as planned!) on the 15th October 2011 at Orton Waterville Church in Peterborough. Following an overnight stay at the reception venue, the couple boarded Miranda II, their 1969 Freeman Mk 2, and set out from The Ramada Hotel, Peterborough, journeying back to her permanent mooring at the Pike and Eel, Needingworth. The delightful autumnal weather that weekend was, we understand, was actually booked well in advance.As we go to press, the happy couple are off the radar and still honeymooning somewhere in Egypt! Newly-weds Mark, Joanne with ‘Miranda II’ moored at Floods Ferry


A Labour

Simon and Marina renovate ‘C

Marina and Simon with crew, Dudley and Snowy


ad anybody suggested we should get a boat ten years ago, we would have probably said “It’s not our thing, it’s too expensive, it’s too cliquey.” How wrong we were! Living where we do in Suffolk, our nearest waterways suitable for pleasure boating are the Deben and Orwell rivers. We used to visit Woodbridge fairly often and wander around the boatyards, and it’s here that the idea of one day owning a boat was born. Initially we had the idea of buying a small trailable day-boat and started to look on line at boats for sale. It’s then that we realised cabin cruisers could be reasonably cheap to buy. Our search then turned to the Norfolk and Suffolk Broads, we weren’t even aware of the Great Ouse as a boating waterway at the time. We fell in love with a Freeman 22, but weren’t quick enough and missed out. We then put in an offer for a Birchwood 22 but were outbid and this turned out to be a blessing in disguise. We decided to concentrate on our search for a Freeman. We found a boat on LH Jones’ website that was within our budget and went to have a look, initially with the idea of moving the boat to the Broads if we bought her. We then realised how nice the Fens waterways were and so we made an offer on a rather tatty-looking Freeman 22 called ‘Cassie’ deciding to keep her at Jones’, with the idea of maybe moving to the Broads the following season. Five seasons on and we’re still here! We still occasionally think of a change of scenery, but something always seems to keep us here on the Great Ouse. We set-about refurbishing Cassie almost straight away. Doing major works on her during the winter months and using her during the cruising season. We stripped all of the cockpit woodwork back to bare timber. The cockpit varnish had a nice crackle finish when we bought her! Any woodwork we could remove we brought home to strip and re-varnish. Once we had the timber stripped, we used a deep mahogany wood stain to bring the timber back to its pre sun-bleached colour. We then applied between five and seven coats of yacht varnish, either International Schooner or Le Tonkinios. Five years on, the Le Tonkinois has proved to be the more durable varnish. The hull and top-sides were thoroughly compounded and came up reasonably well for 44-year-old gelcoat. She’s never going to look perfect, but we’re quite fond of the slightly off-white colour


Cassie shines again

anyway. After using a traditional wax polish for our first season, we decided this was too much like hard work. After reading some reviews, we thought we’d try Poliglow – what a revelation! No elbow grease, a shine that lasts all season and it’s kind to old gelcoat as well. You do need to prepare the boat properly first, as we found out to our cost one year, when time pressures meant we didn’t prepare properly – the topsides looked like they’d been sunburnt and were peeling! It is very easy to remove so no harm done. We then turned our attention to the instrument panel. The original oval panel was missing and somebody had made a replacement out of chipboard covered with brown vinyl. Unfortunately, they had also cut a new opening in the centre console, so we couldn’t replace it with an oval one as on the original Freeman boats. After some head scratching, we had a panel made from engraved Traffolyte. We designed it on the computer, emailed the file off, and a week later we had a very professional looking engraved panel plus gas and petrol valve location markers. I can recommend this route to anybody, it was surprisingly cheap and very in keeping with a 1960s boat. We sourced some new-old-stock gauges off of eBay, including a nice tachometer, made we’re told, for a 1960s Humber, not an original fitment, but it looks perfectly at home. We also found a new throttle lever at a boat jumble for a tenner. We also began our long search for a Freeman steering wheel to replace the wooden ‘Captain Pugwash’ style one fitted; the more we improved the boat, the more out of place this looked! We soon discovered they are as rare as hens’ teeth. Having removed the instrument panel, we realised what a state the wiring was in. There was every kind of cable under the sun; bell wire, lawnmower cable, domestic twin and earth, to name just a few. So the decision was made to rewire her, fusing each individual circuit as we went. Before the rewire she had the amusing habit of tooting her horn every time you turned on the toilet light! Next up, the upholstery. My partner, Marina, being a dab-hand with a sewing machine, made a fantastic job of this. We made a template and ordered the seat foam on-line, it was half the price quoted by our local supplier. We also found a whole bolt of quality upholstery material on eBay and won it for £35! This did the entire boat and we’ve still got loads left. As you can probably tell,

Cassie’s 4

of Love

e ‘Cassie’, a 1967 Freeman 22

ie’s 44 year-old gelcoat looking good

Cassie’s cockpit before restoration

we sourced many of the parts for our boat on eBay. We decided to make the cushions thicker than the originals and this has worked well and is very comfortable. We made an infill panel and cushion to convert the front berths to a double bed. The thicker-than-original cushions allowed Marina to make a small cushion to cover the emergency hatch foot-step, so no hard lump in the middle of the bed – except for Dudley, our rather large Greyhound. The old cabin carpet was removed and used as a template for the new felt-backed carpet, cut slightly over-size to allow for trimming once in place and held with self-adhesive gripper tape. All the edges were folded over to prevent fraying. Laying carpet in a boat is a fiddly job. Marina’s good at the fiddly bits, so I left it to her! She made a fantastic job of it too. We then had a stroke of luck, a genuine Freeman 23 steering wheel on eBay. Not the type normally fitted to the 22s, but close enough. It was missing a few handles, but Marina’s dad soon had those turned up on the lathe. What a bargain – as good as new for £10. Than came the job we’d been dreading, window refurbishment... This turned out to be every bit as difficult as we’d imagined. Once the windows were out we set about stripping them down and replacing all the felts and seals. We also swapped a cracked pane of laminated glass for the correct toughened version. Most of the screws holding the window-frames together had to be drilled out, and several of the jointing brackets had corroded right through. There was also some galvanic corrosion in one of the frames, but fortunately this is hidden by the rubber seal, so a bit of metal putty did the job. New jointing brackets were fabricated and the windows re-assembled. We had difficulty sourcing stainless-steel screws short and fat enough for the job, but eventually the internet turned up trumps again. Getting the windows back together was a major hassle, but some web clamps and copious quantities of washingup liquid to lubricate the rubber eventually got us there. New perspex windows were fitted at the front, and now we can see out of them! We still have a small leak in one of the front side windows, which we’ll re-seal next spring. The cockpit flooring was beyond repair, so new panels were made from marine ply and edged with Aluminium bar. The panels

Interior restored

were painted with a few coats of bilge paint, which has worked really well. Disaster struck at the beginning of season. Pressures of work had meant we couldn’t get to the boat to winterise her before the early and severe cold snap came. When we came to recommission her we found the freeze had popped an engine core-plug. Of course, it had to be the one behind the flywheel, which meant removing the gearbox! Once we’d fixed that, we found water in the oil which didn’t improve after an oil change. So cylinder head off... We were dreading a cracked head, or even worse, the engine block. Fortunately, it turned out to be the head gasket. While the head was off I took the opportunity to give it a good clean and re-grind the valves. A new-old-stock head gasket was purchased, which was a big mistake. The gasket just would not compress and leaked profusely. Head off again, another new gasket fitted, and fortunately, this time all was well. Had some major head-scratching when the engine was reassembled, as it just would not run correctly, the fuel mixture was far too rich. I must have had that carburetor off and stripped three times, but to no avail. Eventually the boat ran out of petrol. I put a jerry can of fresh fuel in and, would you believe it, she ran perfectly! So I guess the petrol had simply gone off, as modern petrol tends to if left to stand for too long. That’s the story so far, there were a thousand-and-one other little jobs done, and so much still to do. On the agenda for this coming year are; a new canopy, which Marina will make herself; refurbishing or replacing the toilet; a new helm seat pedestal; the external woodwork now needs re-varnishing, and much more. It’s been a huge learning-curve, but all-in-all, great fun. We’ve really taken to boating; it’s just so relaxing and friendly. I’d like to take the opportunity to thank the members of the Freeman Cruiser Fan Club – – whose active user forum has been a goldmine of knowledge and encouragement. We have our own website dedicated to our boat, and her restoration which can be found on It’s not been updated in a while, but we’re working on it – so much to do, so little time!



PASSAGE LOG (EXTRACTS): Miles Locks Journey time Conditions 6 1 2 hrs 15 mins Dry, mild 14 15 7 hrs 30 mins Dry am Showers pm, mild 24 8 10 hrs Dry, mild 14 13 7 hrs 30 mins Wet, cold 25 4 10 hrs Dry am, Rain pm, cold 9 6 6 hrs Dry, cold 13 7 6 hrs Dry, cold 8 4 17 4 hrs 45 mins Dry, mild 9 17 14 7 hrs 45 mins Dry, mild 10 19 12 8 hrs Dry, warm 11 20 10 7 hrs 45 mins Dry, hot 12 15 3 5 hrs 30 mins Dry, cool Totals 180 110 83 hrs Engine running hours 84.5 Fuel used 48 litres Expenses 1 week EA licence for River Nene (£37.55)

Day 1 2 3 4 5 6 7

Macclesfield Canal Trent and Mersey Canal Coventry Canal Birmingham & Fazeley Coventry Canal Oxford Canal (North) Grand Union (Main Line) G.U. Northampton Arm River Nene Middle Level Navigation

Date 23/8/11 24/8/11 25/8/11 26/8/11 27/8/11 28/8/11 29/8/11 30/8/11 31/8/11 1/9/11 2/9/11 3/9/11

ARACHNE’S VOYAGE FACTS AND FIGURES: Congleton to Hall Green Hall Green to Fradley Junction Fradley Junction to Whittington Brook (“detached portion”) Whittington Brook to Fazeley Junction Fazeley Junction to Hawkesbury Junction (Main Line) Hawkesbury Junction to Braunston Junction Braunston Junction to Gayton Junction Gayton Junction to Northampton Northampton to Peterborough Peterborough to March m(via King’s Dyke, Whittlesey Dyke and Old River Nene course)

SIGNIFICANT FEATURES: Harecastle Tunnel – 2926 yards long, one way controlled by lights and attendants Braunston Tunnel – 2042 yards long, 2 way (but only just!)

Macclesfield Canal



Northampton Arm


OBA News readers may remember our Upware Boat Club friends, Peter and Jean Webb, who used to boat on the Great Ouse system on their SNB “Arachne” (SNB = Short Narrow Boat – at 26 feet it occupies less mooring space than most UBC members’ boats!). These days they mostly cruise the canals, spending 3 or 4 months a year on board. In August they were between Manchester and Congleton when Peter broke his ankle, which ended his boating for the year. This left their boat a long way from home and Susan and I offered to cruise it back to its winter home at Fox’s Marina in March on the Middle Level Navigations. This resulted in a journey of 180 miles, 110 locks, 2 tunnels each over a mile long, on 10 canals or rivers and taking 12 days, on many of which we were cruising for more than 7 hours, usually having our lunch on the move. In the course of our travels we faced weather from every season (including monsoonlike rain, not often found in Britain!) and problems of all kinds regarding transport by water (mainly not enough of it to float on!). We had travelled all these waterways over 20 years ago in a series of holidays together with Peter and Jean and all our children, but this time not only did we have no crew to share the work, but we had a friend’s boat in our care – much more responsibility than driving a hire boat! It was also the first time we used the waterways for their intended purpose - as a means of getting from A to B

44th Wedding Anniversary. We had no real difficulties, except for a 3 hour delay whilst British Waterways staff sorted out a problem on the Northampton Arm (4 locks and lock pounds were completely without water!). In general the facilities were plentiful and everything seemed to be in working order, although some of the ancient equipment on the older canals was quite difficult to operate.

G ‘Arachne’ HOME and not just as a series of disconnected floating holidays. This gave a sense of purpose to our days and, although it would be wrong to say it was a challenge to travel as far as possible each day, we did keep going in the knowledge we needed to be home in time for the start of the new school term and to recommence our childcare duties for our family. ‘Arachne’ performed her task really well, providing us with the comfort we needed to eat and sleep, whilst proving manoeuvrable and speedy (she was quite capable of cruising at the 7mph speed limit imposed on the Nene). We rose at 6.30am most days to get some miles and locks in before too many other boats were about, and retired to bed about 9.00pm, usually exhausted! We ate on board most evenings but enjoyed 2 excellent meals ashore, including one at Oundle Mill on the Nene to celebrate our

Braunston Tunnel It was however a great relief to arrive at the clean clear water on the Nene, after the dirty sludge which fills the canals. This sentiment was also expressed by many others travelling in our direction for a holiday on the rivers, some saying they intended to relocate from the canals for that reason. Everyone was very friendly (even the fishermen) and we had a great time doing something a bit different. The downside was missing the holidays on our own boat and not being at all the UBC events, but we hear you somehow got by without us!

SUSAN & PHILIP BAKER (Boat: ‘Aquila’) Reprinted from the Upware Boat Club News letter with the kind permission of the editor

Thanks from Peter and Jean

Jean & I would like to express our heartfelt thanks to Susan and Philip for bringing ARACHNE back to our home mooring. Arachne is a Sea Otter aluminium narrowboat with water ballast so that it is possible to slip it and put on a trailer. Typically where I had my accident was between possible but unknown slipways, one through a tunnel and the other twelve locks away. This end we would have had to find a suitable slipway and arrange with a company to trail the boat. After all that, we would still have had to arrange a crew, and for them to be transported to the boat. Susan and Philip saved us a lot of time consuming research and arranging with boatyards etc. We were confident the boat would be in safe hands as we have boated with them many times. We were amazed that they did the journey in such an extremely good time AND they also refused to take the money we left for them to buy fuel and gas!


Ely’s Boatbuilder

The Appleyard and L

Ely’s magnificent riverside is a popular port of call for Great Ouse boaters. As you approach the City by river the view of Bridge Boats’ hire fleet and Cathedral Marina, dominated skywards by the towering cathedral itself, provide a link to a fascinating boatbuilding history. Facing the ‘Cutter Inn’ across Annesdale is the ‘Boathouse’ restaurant with the old footbridge and Appleyard’s boat dock, now used by Annesdale Marine, alongside. Look on the side wall of the house next door and in fading paint the name ‘Appleyard’s Boatyard’ can still just be seen. The Appleyard family had been building small craft for decades, first on the Babylon (marina) side of the river and then just across the water at their Annesdale premises from Ted Appleyard around 1880. They also ran a chain ferry service across the river; there was no bridge then. Ted Appleyard, who died in the late 1980s, was well known on the Great Ouse and Middle Level system piloting the last fuel barge, Shellfen, in all conditions to keep the vital Fen drainage pumps running. It was in 1947 that Harry James Lincoln, with financial assistance from his wealthy Cambridge godmother, Winifred Armstrong, purchased the business and premises from the Appleyard family. The company, Appleyard and Lincoln (Boatbuilders) Ltd, was born and would make its mark on boatbuilding and Great Ouse leisure boating for the next 30-years and beyond, extending even to the present day.


Harry had served his apprenticeship with Herbert (H.C.) Banham at Cambridge and inherited the fine craftsmanship and traditional wooden boatbuilding skills for which H.C’s company was and still is renowned. Helping to run and maintain Banham’s large Fenland hire fleet through the 1930s would inspire Harry’s all encompassing vision of the potential for leisure boating on the Ouse. During World War II Harry, now in his thirties, had been works manager for Aero Research Ltd at Duxford aerodrome. In conjunction with de Havilland aircraft the company had developed new and advanced synthetic adhesives which later would enhance traditional boat timber bonding methods and enable fully waterproof plywood to be produced. By 1949 A & L, in addition to building and maintaining small craft, were offering for hire several pre-war Broads motor cruisers and sailing boats. Remarkably, one of those sailing boats is still in use at the Cam Sailing Club! The wooden boatbuilding business expanded gradually with several apprentices taken on under the guidance of foreman Bill Maltby, another ex-Banham’s craftsman, and engineer Richard Brown, brother of the Rev. Donald Brown, a GOBA founder. One of those apprentices was young Hugh Easton, a man who would later play a vital role as the company progressed through various stages into the modern world of GRP. At first, Hugh and his mate Len Reynolds would not be entrusted with building new craft and honed their skills in day-to-day maintenance of the elderly hire fleet with the occasional treat of working on customers’ boats. Sixty-years on, they well remember lying on their backs scraping the old, dry tar varnish off an empty hull which Harry had acquired. No overalls, goggles or masks were supplied for this filthy job; Health and Safety at Work was not on the agenda in those days. The old hull was eventually transformed with new decks, saloon and interior fit-out into Harry’s first private cruiser ‘Waterfly’ pictured here at the old Houghton lock in the 1950s. As their skill progressed the lads learned both how to use and sharpen the tools of the

Waterfly at Houghton 1950s trade which, although supplied by Harry, had to be paid for by deductions from their modest pay packets each week. Their first new-boat accomplishments were simple, flat bottomed punts which unusually sported sharp-ended bows. They also built small, 4-seater motor launches powered by single cylinder, two-stroke Stuart Turner petrol engines. Most of these craft were added to the existing fleet of canoes and skiffs for hourly hire at the Annesdale quayside, but one generated a string of further orders after being sold for use on the canal at Chester Zoo. There were ups and downs at the boatyard as the business developed through the 1950s. At times, Harry would have to seek more funding from Mrs Armstrong just to pay the wages. He was always open to suggestion on ways to generate more income. A friend pointed out to him that the woodworking machinery was actually only being used for a short time each day. With a huge stock of old timber in hand, amassed over many years by the Appleyard family and stored in the adjacent granary, Harry was persuaded that the saws, planers and other kit could be put to more productive use. Much to the disgust of the proud, skilled staff, Appleyard and Lincoln entered the ‘mousetrap-base-making’ industry, supplementing that with producing wooden light-switch backing plates to be sold in Woolworths, ladies’ shoe-heel wedges and table lamp bases. Young girls were employed for the new venture, somewhat of a distraction for the young apprentices. The boatbuilders had to queue to use the machinery just when they needed it to cut a keel, frame or plank, a situation which inevitably caused some friction. A rota was organised, boat timbers first thing in the morning, mouse traps in the afternoon, but much to the relief of the men the new venture was eventually abandoned. There were various other enterprises to supplement the boatyard’s income includ-

d Lincoln Story

ing vegetable growing amongst the osier beds across on the Babylon site and chickens! In the old granary, space was cleared and good use was made of the wood shavings from the machine shop on the ground floor - a deep-litter chicken run! Harry had his own supply of eggs - any surplus sold through a local corner-shop run by Cyril Appleyard (one of the old man’s three sons). In 1954 Harry took to the first Daily Express Boat Show at Earls Court a newly designed 30ft cruiser ‘Lucy Anne’ originally intended for the hire fleet. It received excellent reviews in the boating press and was quickly sold to a Thames buyer for £2,700 including a

Petter diesel engine and some extra equipment. A second boat of the same design ‘Falcon’ would join the fleet. Harry would continue to exhibit his craft at the London boat shows, eventually becoming chairman of Boat Shows Ltd as well as an influential figure in the Ship and Boat Builders’ National Federation. ‘Falcon’ carried the Duke of Edinburgh to the official opening of the Relief Channel Tail Sluice in October 1959 and Harry asked the Duke why Buckingham Palace always refused invitations to the London Boat Show. “When you cease having the Daily Express as your sponsor” was the Duke’s curt reply. With the years of post-war austerity gradually coming to an end, incomes improving and Taking down the bridge with paid holidays for workers, leisure boating was beginning to take off and the company built many more fine wooden cruisers for sale or hire. They were rather limited by facilities in the cramped and draughty boat shed and launching the larger craft into the river involved complete dismantling of the footbridge over the dock. Returning from two years’ compulsory National Service in the Royal Navy in 1957, Hugh Easton was given the opportunity to design and build a new 26ft, two-berth cruiser for the hire fleet. Two of the eye-

One of the twins

pleasing Lapwings were built marking an important step in Hugh’s career as a boat designer but events elsewhere would temporarily interrupt normal activities in the A & L workshops. On 26th July 1956, President Nasser of Egypt had nationalised the Suez Canal and following British and French threats of military action sank ships in the canal to prevent its use. A vital route for the oil tankers supplying British industry was cut. Tankers would now have to make a 3,000-mile detour around the Cape adding enormous costs and delays. This event would cause major political repercussions and be a cloud on the British economy, but for A & L and Ely that cloud would prove to have something of a silver lining. Early in 1958, three men in suits arrived


at Harry’s office in the old granary. Professor (later Sir) William Rede Hawthorne, a distinguished physicist, and two eminent colleagues from Cambridge University came with a plan. Hawthorne, already recognised for his brilliant work with Frank Whittle on the jet engine, had devised a ‘bag’ which could be filled with oil and towed like a barge behind a sea tanker vastly increasing capacity to mitigate the ‘Suez’ problem. The ‘bag’ could then be rolled-up and returned empty as deck cargo ready for a new load of oil. P.B. Cow Ltd (the Lilo air bed makers) were commissioned to make the first experimental bags in rubber-coated, nylon fabric. The professor needed the loan of a barge to test the latest 60ft by 3ft bag in the river, hence the call on Harry. Tests of the bag, nicknamed ‘Dracone’ the Greek name for a sea serpent, began at the Queen Adelaide straight and soon, Harry got himself appointed as business adviser to a new company ‘Dracone Developments Limited’ (DDL) funded by the government’s National Research and Development Corporation. Harry Lincoln was now really mixing in the world of big business, big influence and big bucks! DDL took over a office in the granary and appointed Ted Appleyard’s nephew Tony as their chief designer. In addition to flotation tests there was work to be done on a suitable steel nose cone and a reel to

Testing Dracone - Harry at the wheel recover the emptied Dracones. Engineer Bill Scarrow fabricated the nose cones while Hugh Easton devised and built an experimental reel. Hugh still recalls how one day Professor Hawthorne asked him to be kind enough to check some complicated calculations on friction coefficients for the reel which he had jotted down on the train journey from Cambridge. Of course they were right! Eventually the whole operation, and Tony, moved to the Solent for much larger Dracones, up to 300ft long, to be manufactured. In the event, and with the advent of supertankers, the nylon vessels were never widely used for their original purpose but are still manufactured today and primarily used to isolate oil spills. Work at Ely would Hugh’s first Dracone reel once more fo-


cus on boatbuilding but not before Harry had seen his name added to at least one of the Dracone patent applications and made significant and powerful business contacts and not a little money, to develop the boatbuilding business. Hugh’s next design brief was for a new 29ft cruiser, ‘Bruhaha’, for a friend of Harry’s, local solicitor Mr Asplin. Hugh planned to adopt similar lines to the pretty ‘Lapwings’ but Harry insisted on ‘omnibus’ straight windows and less rake on the forward screens ‘to make hanging the curtains easier’. Harry later adopted this boat as his own and cruised the river for many years before and after his retirement. After extensive restoration this lovely boat, now renamed ‘Orchard Delight’ is still cruising the Great Ouse, owned by Denise Troughton and Steve Watson and moored at Bedford. ‘Orchard Delight’ celebrated her 50th birthday last year. The 30ft ‘Sheerwaters’ followed in 1961 and then an order from the Bure and Waveney Commissioners on the Norfolk Broads for a new patrol boat. Hugh’s design had won the contract after stiff competition from Broads’ yards and the patrol inspectors were delighted when the new boat gave them a top speed 5 mph greater than their old boats with the same 30hp Penta diesel. One of the two boats built, ‘Ant’, was recently traced to Thurne Mouth on the Broads where it is still in pristine condition. Another is well known here on the river as Westview Marina owners, Les and Elaine Fidler’s ‘Annie’ now with solar electric propulsion and lovingly restored. Harry’s heart was still very much with the boat hire operation. He yearned to establish a Fenland wide fleet with bases elsewhere on the river but with all building and maintenance work to be done at Ely. He approached the business contacts he had made through the Dracone operation and managed to secure substantial financial backing from Shipping and Industrial Holdings Ltd (SIHL) for a new factory and hire-fleet workshop across the river at Babylon. Work began on a new 14,000 sq. ft building over the old Babylon slipway, although it is rumoured that Harry only had permission for 9,000 square feet. H o w e v e r, the financiers at SIHL soon realised that maintenance of the wooden hire fleet alone was unlikely to give an adequate re- Wooden fleet 1959

Ant Patrol Boat

Ant in build turn on their investment. They had a boatyard; they needed to build boats, and the only way to make real money was to turn to the new technology, glass reinforced plastic. SIHL turned to Dick Sparrow, founder of Seamaster at Great Dunmow, who had been successfully producing GRP boats since the mid-fifties. Under protest from Harry, who liked neither GRP nor Mr Sparrow very much, Dick was appointed

Work on the new factory begins 1961 as consultant to the project to build boats in the new material. Although Harry managed to retain control of the company as the majority shareholder he would find it hard to accept the enforced transition from timber to GRP. In part 2 we’ll record more trials and tribulations at Ely with Appleyard and Lincoln’s development of their new GRP cruisers, the Elysian 27 and 34, and how Harry Lincoln’s dream of a Fenland hire fleet came true – until one fateful day in August 1975.

On a crisp but dry and clear August Bank Holiday Saturday night the Quay and ancient bridge at St Ives were lined with hundreds of spectators awaiting GOBA’s 2011 Illuminated Boat Parade, organised as part of the St Ives Music and Arts Festival (Fest) celebrations.

GOBA lights up St Ives


eanwhile, a short distance upriver, final adjustments were in hand to an amazing array of advanced electronic wizardry, bulbs, wire and bits of string! As the light gradually faded and the bridge floodlights began to glow across the water, the band struck up and the first boat, MV Destiny, carefully approached the narrow arch. The crowd gasped in amazement and cheered and clapped as the first colourfully lit boat appeared under the bridge. On the Quay, organiser of the event, Nigel Handscombe, also acting as Harbour Master and Master of Ceremonies for the evening, held his breath for a second or two. Destiny belongs to Nigel and his wife, Sylvia, but this evening he had entrusted navigation of the boat to Peter and Viv Macintosh. In the shadowy darkness, Destiny was skilfully steered under the bridge by Peter with just a few inches to spare all round. Nigel breathed again. The fine boat-handling would be repeated, in difficult visibility, by all the skippers and crew taking part, a credit to every one of them. As the parade of glowing boats of all shapes and sizes and with an infinite variety of decorative themes appeared one-by-one, Nigel’s amusing commentary was almost drowned out by the music and cheers from the crowd. Once all the craft were through the bridge they assembled in a dazzling flotilla downstream towards the lock. Returning to even more applause from spectators, they passed under the old bridge once more on their way to a prize-giving ceremony at Nobles Field.

Winners were judged by the St Ives Mayor and Mayoress and Carol and Mick from Jones’ Boatyard. What a night! As a spectacle the parade probably exceeded anything seen at St Ives since Cromwell’s Roundheads partially blew up the bridge nearly five centuries ago.

THE BOATS AND CREWS DESTINY, a 9.5 ton steel Western 35 owned by Nigel and Sylvia Handscombe, skippered by Olympic torch bearers, Peter and Viv Macintosh. FOUR CANDLES, a name which Two Ronnies’ fans will appreciate, a Viking 26 owned by Steve and Jan Bailey with crew, Molly the dog. OCEANIA, Dave and Theresa Ouzman’s Disco-themed Ocean 30 from Westview marina with three-year-old Harry assisting the rest of the crew. OUSE HAPPY NOW, a brand new (careful at the bridge!) Shetland 29i proudly crewed by owners, Ian and Kath Anderson. LEANSHE, a six-berth Relcraft 29 owned by relatively new but intrepid boaters Sally and George Chandler. LATEST FLAME, in ‘Puff the Magic Dragon’ themed splendour complete with flapping wings, is Dave and Di Mole’s famous Ocean 30. Shame about the singing, but good to see Di back to health again. Prize Winners for ‘Best Themed Boat’ Dave and Di received 4 bottles of wine and a meal for two donated by L H Jones and quayside restaurant ‘Number 4OUR’.

ALAMO, a Marina 24, crewed with great spirit by owners Liz and Fred Ray with lovely young daughters, Rebecca 9, and Samantha 5. AQUAMAID is Tony Goodwin’s colourful Princess 32 with a Pirate theme. Tony forgot to give us the names of the other pirates on board. STEAL AWAY is a Ruhaak Dutch steel cruiser and the pride and joy of GOBA’s Vice Chairman, Ian Cox and his wife, Lyn. Steal Away’s impressive theme as a Mississippi paddle steamer won her the ‘Prettiest Boat’ title and a complete fuel clean donated by St Ives Engine Services Ltd. SNOW GEM, the twin-diesel Senior 31 built downriver by Carringtons at Earith in 1968 and now owned by Brian and Angela Dye, is in good hands as Brian has 60-years’ boating behind him. Theme for the night is ‘Alice in Wonderland’. BLACK PEARL, another Princess but this time a ‘sporty’ 30s owned by newlyweds Steve and Hannah Johnson. In case their concentration wanders, Steve and Hannah are assisted by their in-laws and the vicar! MEANDER is well known at St Ives as one of the popular eco-friendly Phoenix 21 electric trip boats owned by Chris Morgan. Tonight’s crew includes a bevy of beauties from A’Diva hairdressers, all



in fine voice! DOOLITTLE, Tony and Bryony Briar’s Fairline 23. Have they ever seen a night like this in their 25-years’ boating on the river Great Ouse? PITALUGUE is a Birchwood 22 and captained by Graham and joint owners, Angela, Adrian and Carol. With experience ranging from Sea Scout canoes to Royal Navy minesweepers, Graham surely won’t hit the bridge. He didn’t and merited the prize for ‘Best nonthemed Boat’ consisting of three bottles of wine from Kingfisher Boat Handling School and two more bottles to be taken free with a meal at Restaurant Molise in St Ives. AURORA is owned by Mark Fesco and his wife. This fine little Fairline Holiday is their first boat. MIRANDA II, breaking all the rules by only registering minutes before the event, is Mark Windsor-Hampton’s Freeman 22. Nigel may let him off as he is about to marry his crew member, the lovely Joanne, in two weeks. We wish them well. FIREFLY is a Seamaster 813 owned by GOBA Secretary, Alistair Reid and his wife, Thelma who is good with the ropes but not so keen on ‘jumping’. One day, if he gets time off from all his GOBA duties, Alistair will install the long-promised shower in the boat! The boat’s theme? Well, obviously, Fireflies. KIRRIBATI, dazzling everyone on the Quay with a spectacular ‘champagne party’ display from 5,000 animated LED rope lights and bulbs, is John and Carolyn Glenn’s Broom 29. Fellow OVRC members, Eric and Marion Folkes and Brian and Millicia Merchant make up the crew. Kirribati was the well-deserved winner of the ‘Best Illuminated Boat’ prize, four bottles of wine donated by Titan Boat Canopies and a voucher for £10 from the Tap Room. SHERATON, a 1976 RLM 31 skippered by the friendly owners of Riverside


Marine and Leisure at the Pike and Eel marina, David Taylor and Sue Scholts. LADY HAMILTON - David and Lorna Morgan commissioned a nine-month rebuild of this historical boat in 2009. Now powered by a quiet electric motor she is a fine sight on the river, cruising from her base at Hemingford Grey. On board are Ivor Stocker, David and Diane Warbrick-Smith, David and Jane Pask, Mike and Pam Neverton and Jane Murphy with grandson Guy. APPLE PIP, the smallest craft taking part tonight is an electric powered open Canadian canoe with a ‘jungle’ theme skippered by Cam Conservators River Manager, Philippa (Pip) Noon and her First Mate partner, Shaun Chapman. Pip’s father, Stanley, 80 tomorrow, completes the crew as midshipman. As the ‘Best small boat under 30 feet’ they won two bottles of wine donated by Kingfisher Boat Handling plus a special bottle of fizz for Sid courtesy of Fest. ZIZZY is Tim Keane’s beautiful slipper launch with steel hull and hardwood superstructure. A 1920’s Thames design, she was totally restored in 1990 and has a petrol engine. MILLENNIUM ROSE gets her name from her launch date in the year 2000. She is Don Walker’s stern wheel paddle steamer, built by him and a familiar sight at St Ives. Congratulations to the prize-winners and well done to everyone who took part to make this such an amazing event. Very special thanks must go to Nigel, who almost single-handedly, organised and managed the whole show. And next year? Understandably, Nigel says “Well, when I’ve recovered from all the work involved in sorting everything this year, I’ll give it some thought but I will need some considerable help”. So, if you think you can persuade Nigel by guaranteeing him some assistance in 2012, he’s at: nigel.handscombe@goba. waiting to hear from you.

We will be refurbishing the guillotine gate at Bedford Lock this winter. During the winter months, we are planning to refurbish the guillotine gate at Bedford Lock. The work is being done as part of an ongoing project to improve the safety and reliability of lock gates along the River Great Ouse. Work on the gate will include the replacement of the complete drive systems, actuator, gearbox, chain sprockets, bearings and shafts. Changes are also being made to improve maintenance access to the high-level platform. The lock is the last unpowered guillotine gate on the Great Ouse system and a new power supply is being provided to the site, complete with control system. This will include the new pedestal-type navigation panel with countdown timers and safety delay feature. We are also looking into the possibility of the raising the guillotine gate to increase the headroom through the lock. This would meet proposals set out in the Bedford Waterspace Study. Funding will be sought by the various asset owners in the future to raise the access bridge over the lock and the other low bridges in the Bedford area.


The Bedford Waterspace Study outlines a vision for Bedford’s development and regeneration as an important waterways destination. Boaters on the River Great Ouse were represented at a special event at the end of September to mark the launch of the Bedford Waterspace Study The Waterspace Study is a partnership be-

E ENVIRONMENT AGENCY tween the Environment Agency and Bedford Borough Council. It outlines how the River Great Ouse and its facilities can be improved and developed in the Bedford area. The launch event was attended by about 50 people including boaters and other river users as well as parish councils and local businesses. Erin Witcomb-Vos, Fens Waterways Link Partnership Manager at the Environment Agency, said: “Waterways animate our towns and replenish our countryside, but above all, rivers form part of a larger pattern of landscape which connects people and wildlife. The jointlyfunded Bedford Waterspace Study focuses on all aspects of the river corridor and presents a vision for Bedford’s development and regeneration as an important waterways destination. The launch event provided a fantastic opportunity for us to share the findings of the study with all those people who played their part in helping to shape it.” The study area comprised the navigable corridor of the River Great Ouse from Bromham Bridge downstream, to the future junction of the Bedford & Milton Keynes Waterway link in the vicinity of Kempston Weir, eastwards through Bedford town centre to Willington Lock. The results have been published in two parts: an economic impact and opportunities study, and the main waterspace study which forms a master-plan for the river corridor. This comprises of detailed maps and schedules of potential projects and developments such as new moorings, improved cycleways and footpaths and other facilities. Both parts of the study are intended to be ‘living documents’ which can be easily updated and used to guide all those with an interest in the river. The documents will be made available on the Bedford Borough Council and Environment Agency websites.

LET US KNOW IF YOU SELL YOUR BOAT We are reminding our boating customers that if you sell your boat, you must let us know. It is your responsibility to inform us about the change of ownership and until you do so, you remain the legal owner and are responsible for registering it. Anyone selling their boat needs to complete a change of ownership/ address form for Anglian Region. Contact Boat Registration on 0118 9535650 to request a copy. We would also like to remind you that: You must display your registration disc on your boat in a position that is clearly visible to our enforcement staff. Your boat’s registration number (and the name on powered boats) must be clearly visible on both sides of the boat.

GATE REPLACEMENT PLANNED FOR ST NEOTS LOCK We are planning major works at St Neots Lock this winter to replace the vertical lift gate structure. The existing gate structure is more than 40 years old and recent structural inspections have deemed it as being at the end of its service life. As a result, it needs replacing to ensure continued navigation through the lock and for the safety of boaters and the public. The replacement gate and frame will be of a similar size to the existing structure. It will incorporate new mechanical components including actuator, gearboxes, drive-shafts, chains and sprockets. These will provide smooth operation and reliability. The control system for the gate will also be replaced with a new pedestal-type design featuring countdown timers and safety delay features. The new gate will be fitted with a smaller steel counterweight than the existing concrete counterweight. This will improve the appearance of the structure. Currently, the gate is very close to the road bridge crossing the river

We will be carrying out major works on St Neots Lock this winter. and exposed moving parts may create a hazard. The bridge also allows unauthorised access on to the gate. The replacement gate has been designed with this in mind and will be installed approximately two metres further upstream of the road bridge. This will improve safety for the public and for staff maintaining the gate. It will also discourage people from climbing the structure. We are planning to carry out the works during winter to keep disruption to boaters to a minimum. The lock will be closed to navigation to allow us to complete these works. Closure dates are still to be confirmed but it is expected to be during the period from January to March 2012.


Silt removal works underway near Hemingford Lock.

The pair of glasses found during the silt removal works.

During the summer, we closed Hemingford Lock for a week to remove silt from the downstream entrance. The material was transported downstream by barge to the Chub Stream, near St Ives Lock. Some unusual items found included these old spectacles.

HERMITAGE LOCK OPENING HOURS Hermitage Lock is now operating under its winter schedule and is open daily from 9am – 4pm (closed for lunch between 1pm and 2pm) until 31 March 2012. Boaters should give the lock keeper a minimum of one hour’s notice if they wish to travel through the lock during this period. Contact the lock on 01487 841548 for further details and to arrange passage. The lock will be closed Christmas Day, Boxing Day, New Year’s Day. Summer operating hours will re-commence on 1 April through to the end of September.




BOATERS WHO FLOUT THE RULES PAY THE PRICE The majority of our boaters register on time every year – thank you. However, for those who don’t register, there can be some serious consequences. In 2010/11 we prosecuted 34 boaters for non-registration resulting in fines totalling £12,045 and costs of £4,145. So far this year (2011/12) we have had three prosecutions leading to fines totalling £1,200 and £345 costs. These boaters have received a hefty fine, on top of their navigation fee, and now have a criminal record In addition to prosecutions, we have issued formal cautions and warning letters. These can be used in court if the boat is not registered again this year. All boats kept, let for hire or used on our waterways, including the main river, private moorings, marinas or backwaters, must be registered with us. Not only do we receive much-needed income, but as a valid Boat Safety Scheme Certificate and third party insurance is also required to register, it makes boating on our waterways safer.


Hugh is reunited with Bruhaha (Orchard Delight)


ifty years after he designed and helped to build her, Hugh Easton was reunited with ‘Orchard Delight’ originally ‘Bruhaha’ at Bedford. Hugh, now 79, had driven from his home in Lowestoft at the invitation of owners Steve Watson and Denise Troughton who have lovingly restored the craft. Orchard Delight has its own website at:

A new floating landing stage is to be installed at the downstream entrance to St Ives Lock. We are carrying out works to refurbish and improve St Ives Lock. The works will include draining down the lock and casting a new concrete floor slab. This will repair a leak in the floor of the lock beneath the mitre gates. We are also refurbishing the mitre doors by repainting the steel work, replacing deteriorating timbers, renewing the paddles and modifying the height of the balance beams to compensate for the new concrete floor slab. The walkway over the mitre doors will be improved by a replacement deck with new anti-slip mesh and toe boards along the edges. New treadmills will be constructed beneath the balance beams to make their operation safer for our customers. In addition, we are also treating and repainting the guillotine gate steel work to prolong its service life and upgrading the gate-lifting mechanism and navigation control panel. This is being done as part of our ongoing mechanical improvement programme. Damaged coping and brickwork around the lock will be replaced and new fenders are being installed at both entrances. A new floating landing stage is also being installed at the downstream entrance to the lock. This will provide additional mooring space for boaters and will accommodate a wider range of water levels than the existing facilities. The canoe portage will also be upgraded as part of the project. We are planning to undertake the works during the winter to minimise disruption.


GOBA News is most grateful to Hugh for providing the information and most of the pictures for our Appleyard and Lincoln feature. Hugh was responsible for the design of A & L’s hugely successful ‘Elysian’ range of cruisers before building his own Starfish 8 and 10 fast fishing boats and the larger Bullet 36 and 38 charter fishing vessels. This year’s annual reunion of ex-Appleyard and Lincoln employees was held in Ely on 28 October. Aged (respectfully) from their 60s into their early 80s, there were fitters, designers and chippers who had mastered their trade and then spent a lifetime working on boats. For the first time the group was joined by various present day proud owners of A & L craft. Everyone enjoyed an evening of nostalgia and the extensive display of historic documents produced by Hugh Easton and Alan Scarrow.

In 2012, an even more ambitious event is planned with a rally of Appleyard and Lincoln boats at the Jubilee Ely AquaFest on Sunday 1st July. Latest details are available from Steve and Denise via their Orchard Delight website.


At Cambridge we have had a full year with the Centenary celebrations as well as many of our usual events. The Centenary ball which I mentioned last time was the main event of the year. I am now happy to report that it was a huge success with 160 of the members and their guests enjoying an excellent meal and with big band music from Opus 17 making it a magical night. This was followed on the Sunday by a lunch, music and conversation and we were very fortunate to have “Diana” on display, a boat that belonged to the first Commodore at Cambridge. My thanks to all the members who did so much work to make it a great weekend. We also had an open air concert in June and a Rock night in July, both of which were very well supported and we welcomed members from other clubs, many of whom moored overnight at the club. August saw a number of boats from Cambridge converging at the Ship at Brandon for a cruise. As usual we got a warm welcome and for those who ventured there it was a very good weekend. We will soon be planning our events for 2012 including an open weekend on the early May bank holiday weekend of the 5th – 7th May with many activities and a themed evening on the Saturday. GOBA members wishing to join us that weekend or for part of it will be very welcome and should contact me to make arrangements. I’m looking forward to next year and would like to thank all the CMBC team who make all the things we do possible STEVE FELL Dream Weaver


The season flashes by and here we are again, dear reader, in the second half of October as I write and already looking towards the end of the boating season but still looking for some summer. The last week in September, a short Indian summer, took many of us by surprise after what went before! The middle part of the season up here at the top of the river has been the usual busy time. The annual dinghy run on 19 June saw 4 dinghies and a cruiser making another pilgrimage to Kempston. I know, a cruiser on the dinghy run....but we need to get the victuals there somehow! Those venturing thus far were rewarded by a barbecue in the river-side garden of our members, Jan and Dave Boutell. Our thanks go to them, again, for their splendid hospitality. This was accompanied by a quiz involving pubs (naturally) and their location in respect to locks. July 9 saw the “summer” barbecue on the moorings. The weather was not as kind as it might have been, in common with the rest of the year, being cool for the season and raining later, getting cooler still! However, the event was well attended, as usual, by about 100 members, their families and friends. An excellent fare was enjoyed by all accompanied by a disco in the clubhouse. Just when you thought the weather could not dampen proceedings further, along came the August bank holiday cruising week end. It started wet on Friday afternoon and went downhill from there! The weather that is. The event itself was enjoyed by all who cruised to St Neots common despite these almost overwhelming odds! Alas the rains came on

Saturday evening and drove everyone back onto their boats to dine, rather than on the bank. It happens! This did not however, prevent Mo Silson from arranging a “scavenging competition” whereby all had to obtain a variety of objects from their boats using some highly doubtful definitions of what was asked for! The annual boat handling competition encouraged a small number (5) but high quality entry on September 10. This year was a particularly entertaining course involving some tight movements and rescuing some especially small boats from the water. Of course, this event would not be complete without its attendant “autumn” barbecue which lived up to its timely description! The grub, as always, was good! The final competition of the season was on October 1, the fishing attempt. This is actually an accurate description as there is rarely a lot of fish caught and this year lived up to expectations. Mine at least. Personally I have never seen the attraction of worrying fish but then the fish at BBC really do not have a lot to worry about! The two trophies (largest catch and largest fish) were duly competed for and I dare say the winners, when they are announced at the Laying Up Supper, will hold the trophies proudly for the ensuing year! By the time you read this, Christmas will be very close so I wish a very merry Christmas and a happy and prosperous new year to you and yours and look forward to another new boating season in 2012 on our magnificent river. Do keep an eye on our web site at: www.bedfordboatclub. JOHN HODGSON 01234 344884


The summer has flown past this year and we are into autumn already. With the clocks about to go back as I write this at the end of October, to some it marks the end of the boating season. The club celebrated its 40th Anniversary at the Denver Complex in June. We had to battle with the elements on Saturday morning to erect the Marquee. With some members holding on to it as the wind blew, other members found more ropes and mooring irons to tether it to the ground. In the end it was a most enjoyable weekend with 7 boats arriving by river and some more members by car. An evening Bar-B-Q and Sunday lunch in the Jenyn’s Arms rounded off the weekend. We had the club’s Fun Weekend in July, a 2-day event. The first day started with rowing, Mens & Ladies. Mixed (rowing) paddling was a laugh with some members nearly falling in the river. The best one was a father and son. Dad got wet! After lunch it was Welly Throwing. I managed to keep my welly on the course this year, not over the neighbour’s garden fence. The final event on Saturday was Rope Throwing, the first time we have had this event. On Sunday it was the boat handling event with 8 boats taking part. The course was set, the skippers and crew briefed and they were under starter’s orders. It was closely fought with only a few marks between the 1st, 2nd and 3rd places. This leads me on to our Laying-up Supper on the 29th October with a full house of members and guests attending. The cups were given out for the competitions held on our Fun Weekend. From all the members of the Denver Cruising Club I would like to wish you all a MERRY CHRISTMAS and a HAPPY NEW YEAR. CAROL WARBURTON ‘Captain Simon’






I try to observe one rule when writing for the GOBA magazine and that’s not to talk about the weather, but I do hope some of you managed to catch some sunshine at some point during the summer. It was a pretty mixed picture and as always, our members had some mixed experiences as well. Boating can be challenging at times and we’ve had our share of burst hoses, leaky header tanks, leaky water tanks, wiring problems etc. Most we can laugh about, some we would prefer not to talk about, so I’m naming no names! Thankfully, there have only been one or two people who have taken unplanned swims and the bruises have now healed. Most of our boats were back at their moorings for our competition weekend at the beginning of September. Although the weekend now includes darts, pool, French boules and fishing competitions, it is good to see that the traditional boat handling competitions continue to be held. They are a bit of fun but it’s easy to forget their practical significance. As far as possible, it’s important that everyone aboard understands what to do in the event of a man overboard and at least knows how to bring the boat back to a mooring, should they find themselves in charge. Indeed, at Easter I was glad that my partner Claire is so capable when I found myself left on the bank with one of the dogs in a particularly boisterous wind. Long story! Our social programme is getting back into full swing and we have already enjoyed the Rear Commodore’s party. Our Rear Commodore and his lady are to be congratulated for organising an evening full of surprises. The theme was to ‘come dressed as someone you admire’ so we had an eclectic mix of costumes. Somhow, in oneevening, we were entertained

Why gentlemen prefer blondes! by a talented singer, a disco, another talented singer and a belly dancer! One member in particular tried his hand at belly dancing. All I’ll say, Ed is that it was just ‘wrong’, on so many levels. Even as we prepare for our laying-up supper, Carole’s OVRC line dancing squad is dusting down its boots for a couple of practice sessions followed by a full assault on the Clubhouse floor boards, later in November. In the meantime, our Annual General Meeting will also be held. It is always well attended and as we have welcomed so many new members this year I hope that they can make it too. This year, we will again have an election for Committee places and that’s always healthy. We also have to make some important decisions about our membership structure and our rules. Rules are a necessary evil but it’s important that the whole membership buys into them, so I would like as many people involved as possible. I feel I should also say a few words about our outgoing


Commodore, Vic Driver. Ably supported by his wife June, Vic spent three years as our Social Chairman before working his way through a further six years as a Flag Officer in the roles of Rear Commodore, Vice Commodore and now Commodore. A total of nine years service to the Club. It’s a big chunk of anyone’s life but I have watched Vic and June throw themselves into each job and give it their all. Inevitably, there have been ups and downs in that time and sometimes it takes more than a little fortitude to keep going. It’s good to see that you’re still smiling and you should both be proud of your contribution. On behalf of all our members, thank you for all your hard work. It only remains for me to wish all GOBA members a happy Christmas, a healthy and prosperous new year and safe boating in 2012. MARTIN WILCOX Hon. Secretary, OVRC ‘Moonshine’


With Halloween upon us and the clocks ‘falling back’ dark mornings and even darker nights to come, don’t you just feel a little blue at the prospect of limited or no boating activity for a few months? The weather has again been a rather a mixed bag. What happened to the blistering heatwave of a summer the weather men reliably told us we would have? However, I can forgive them that if this Indian summer continues and they get it completely wrong about a Big Freeze ahead. Nonetheless, we are boaters and made of strong stuff, so the more enthusiastic amongst us set ‘sail’ come wind, rain or shine. Sorry, but I am not one of them! We have had another year full of events, one of which was our usual trip to the Hemingfords. With a good turnout we had a jolly good time as always, with the majority setting off in dinghies on Sunday morning to breakfast at Daylock Marine. Being slightly disorganised we failed to phone ahead and book, until Lynda Fensome (Lady Lynda) took charge. Despite now serving Sunday lunches, and with very short notice of the descending dinghy flotilla, they managed to rustle up a a mix of bacon & sausage sarnies. What friendly and accommodating people they are. We have tended to cruise to St Ives in early September, but this year we had a change of venue and visited Hartford Marina for the weekend instead. Unfortunately, the turnout was not as expected but for those who went it was an enjoyable weekend, if not eventful! By that I mean the ever challenging Houghton Lock, wind & torrential rain on the return journey – oh deep joy! It was however, nice to see Ted & Ann (Anteki), who moor at Hartford Marina and made the arduous journey across several yards of water to the left bank, to join us for a BBQ and chit chat around the camp fire. During the first weekend of October, we held a Charity Do with the proceeds going to Di & Dave Mole’s local hospital. They wanted to show their appreciation to the nurses who cared for Di during her illness last year. The evening was a resounding success, with Line Dancing, Disco, Raffles and an Auction, and we managed to raise a whopping £1,875 which will help the ward buy some ‘easy chairs’ for patients. Thank you to everyone who participated, especially those of you who so generously donated the auction prizes. All too soon we come to our Laying Up Supper, held again this year at Oliver’s Lodge in St Ives. Our Commodore, Dave Mole, was happy to welcome friends from the Upware Boat Club, who we hope enjoyed themselves and will return next year.

Before I round this article off, I would very much like to give a mention to a very special couple, Dianne & Peter Mead, who have again missed much of this year’s boating season due mainly to Peter’s ill health. This unfortunately means they have both decided to resign from the PEBC Committee. Thank you for all your support and hard work. Let’s hope 2012 sees you back enjoying ime on the boat again. Last but certainly not least, thank you to John & Janette Coulson for keeping everything at the club ‘ticking’ over, and a big Thank You to all of those committee members who turn up at every event and put a lot of time and effort into making things run smoothly for everyone concerned. I am sure every club has these valued volunteers without which nothing would happen! Well, as another boating season draws to a close we can only hope that 2012 brings good weather, trips a plenty, and more tales of boating trials and tribulations. JULIA LINDLEY Assistant Secretary


With the end of the year quickly gaining on us, I hope you have all enjoyed your summer of boating. Over the summer, on our numerous trips around the Ouse and its tributaries, we have stayed on many lovely moorings and I would like to congratulate GOBA on the upkeep of these. Since my last article, the club has had three social events. Our first was held in the riverside gardens of members Sylvie & Mike Chase at Little Paxton; a lovely day was had by all members who attended and as usual Sylvie & Mike were generous hosts for this annual event. The weather was very kind to us and we were able to enjoy the garden setting well into the night. Our next event was a weekend afloat rally on the GOBA moorings at Brampton; seven boats attended and a further four members arrived by car. The weather on both the Friday night and all day Saturday was very good, although there was Bright but windy at Brampton a chill in the air after sunset. Much drinking, BBQing and eating was enjoyed by all present. Saturday evening was spent warmly inside the gazebos, chatting and listening to a wide range of music supplied by a member and his portable BOSE system. The raffle and quiz was enjoyed by all. Sunday morning dawned bright but very windy. We looked out of our boat at 6am to check our gazebos and all was well. However, by 7am they were all in danger of blowing away so all members hastily left the warmth of their beds and chased out to rescue chairs, tables, BBQs and gazebos! The three dogs that were at the rally (Rio, Gemma & Thomas) thought this was a good game and ran round with excitement. It was at this time that the farmer (in whose field the moorings are situated) decided to let his herd of cattle out into the field. Dogs were

hastily put onto boats and the securing of everything gathered further pace and came to a very speedy completion. What a way to start a day! After the manic actions, a more leisurely breakfast ensued. Our third event was an end of season luncheon, held at Full house at the River View the River View Inn at Earith Inn where members filled the entire restaurant and a lovely meal was enjoyed by all. The afternoon was completed by a leisurely drink in the gardens overlooking the Ouse. If you would like further information or would like to consider becoming a member of the Seamaster Club then please contact Brian Rowland, Membership Secretary tel: 01689 824531 email: Further information is also available from the Seamaster website: http:// I trust you will all be busy over the next few weeks “winterising” your boats ready for another season afloat. We look forward to another lovely year of boating in 2012. SANDRA WOODHAM Regional Co-ordinator


It seems like only 5 minutes ago since I wrote the last UBC report for GOBA. The boating season has passed by so quickly, and it is now time to wrap up our boats for winter. It has been almost a year since the members of UBC put their faith in me to be their Commodore, and Jane and I have really enjoyed this past year. We have had 12 events this year starting with our winter cruise to Potters and finishing with our Laying up Supper in the Masonic Hall in Ely. We held a sports weekend at the Lazy Otter, which has become a very popular well-attended event over the years, and this year was no exception with 14 boats in attendance. It is amazing how a few balls and a bucket can bring out the competitiveness amongst the members. Then we all sat around in the evening and had a BBQ followed by a really difficult quiz. A nice relaxing weekend which was helped by equally nice weather. Our annual Flagship event was held at Littleport with 30 boats in attendance, with members from PEBC, DCC and CMBC. Lots of work goes into organising a Regatta and the weekend went really well, and once again the weather was great. We held several river based events as well as an Illuminated Boat competition and a Boat Handling competition. At the end of July several of us took our boats to the Brandon Creek picnic moorings for our annual Rock & Pop fancy dress weekend, 13 boats in attendance. All snuggled up in the club marquee eating a takeaway on the Friday evening and a BBQ on the Saturday evening followed by music from the 50s through to the 00s, with most members in fancy dress, dancing and drinking the evening away until the early hours of the morning. A Beer Festival was held at Judes Ferry and some of our members went to that but we had boat problems so could not make it. Now, what’s next? Oh yes, a Caribbean-themed fancy dress weekend at Denver Complex , with the marquee all decorated Caribbean style and a rum punch on the go all night. It was put together by our rear Commodore who I think, as





Upware fleet at Littleport chief taster of course, drank his way through some of it before it reached the marquee. It was once again well attended by our members with 13 boats arriving with BBQs again and alcohol flowing nicely all weekend. It was worth mentioning that our Fancy Dress competition was closely fought and a guy won the ladies competition. Now, who has more fun on the river than UBC; not many I think! We then thought it was time to slow down a bit so we headed for The Ship at Brandon Creek for a relaxing weekend and a very nice meal prepared by Michelle. There were about 10 boats there and 30 members eating in the restaurant on the Saturday evening. Michelle did an excellent job getting all the food out together. 59 people came to the UBC Laying up supper at Ely and that is the most we have had attend for a few years. Once again the weather was good and some members brought their boats. The committee made a lovely job of decorating the hall and the food was excellent. I then did the trophy presentations for the year, and we were all entertained by Molly G, who kept us on the dance floor. All in all a very fun 2011. I think you will agree UBC members know how to enjoy themselves and we will continue to do so. Many thanks for reading this article and enjoy the festive break. TERENCE READ Commodore


Approximately 35 years ago was the first time I came down to Crosshall Marina. The club then was a small thatched roofed building, as was the main house. It was a social drinking club but the atmosphere was magic and was the kind of club where people went not only to drink but to talk. Many a boat problem was solved and many friendships made but it was too small. For many years we thought the club was great but it looked dated and at the end of the boating season in 2007 the club was gutted and completely refurbished. It is now a very modern, clean, welcoming club. Anyway, back to what has been going on this year. March was the big clean up. The work party left the club all spick and span ready for the first event which was on the first Saturday in April – the Welcome Evening with ‘Open the Box’. It was great to see everybody again after a long and very cold winter. Also in April we had a Dog’s Night, Quiz Night and then the famous Easter Egg Hunt. This is really for all the children and they love it although I did see a lot of grown up people with big, big smiles across their faces. A lovely day for the kids and parents. May – more quiz nights and Pub games. Also on 21st May, Rok the Boat Roadshow had a 60’s and 70’s night. I am sure some of the 60’s & 70’s clothes worn were their normal working day clothes. A really good night and very funny as well.


First Saturday in June was the Family Fun Day which was brought forward to try and get a warm dry day. This year it was geared for the kids. The morning started a bit cloudy but by 1.00 pm the sun was shining and the fun and games started. A great day was had by all and the evening began with the one and only Blues Brothers. Everyone outside with drinks in hand watching them performing on the patio; what more could one want? Absolutely brilliant. 12th June was the famous model boat race where men can become little boys again. I am not sure who won because of all the skulduggery and disqualifications and a few tears. I think we need a bigger challenge so if there are any boy boat racers out there who can challenge the Whitehouse team give us a call. I was asked if any of our members had been boating on other waters. The answer is yes. On the 13 June the charts came out, GPS’s were charged, weather logged, tides checked and Denver Lock informed to get through to the Wash for the epic journey to Greece – yes, Greece. Only joking about going by boat but 5 yachts were hired to sail around the Ionian Islands. The cabs picked them up at the Club on Friday night for a trip to Gatwick then an early flight to Greece to pick up the boats for a week sailing, drinking and eating out all in the Greek sunshine. There were too many funny moments to just pick one to write about. July and again strained necks as we all looked skyward eagerly awaiting for the Red Arrows to fly past. Alas they never came – yet again. I must say our Commodore, Brian Dobson, has been working hard to get them for five years and must be good friends with the administrator by now. If any one has got six red planes can you please let me know! The Vice Commodore day was held on the same day as our Hog Roast, 9th July. Always a great day and it was a bit special as the Vice night was medieval themed. Now I know you do not talk about dressing up in our Club as they would be donning fancy dress every day but the turnout was Universal Film quality – knights, wenches, monks and even King Henry with one of his wives. As the evening drew in our entertainment arrived, the one and only Alan Jay. He sang all the favourites and was in no hurry to go home. The evening ended with our very own Rok the Boat Roadshow. One of our best nights. July ended with a weekend away with 14 boats down river for a very sunny BBQ. August started with a night with Uche Eke, the Soul Man who has sung with Hot Chocolate. Just when I was thinking our entertainment could not get any better – it did. What a singer, shut your eyes and listen, I thought they had reincarnated Frank Sinatra. As we all know August sees the Illuminated Boat Parade – we had the boats, we had the lights, but the Council did not have the money. September was the Commodore’s night. The theme was film and TV and it was hard to tell who was who, from Charlie Chaplin to Dolly Parton to the Joker to the Thunderbirds. Music was provided by our own number two disco, Soft & Gentle, Mad & Mental Roadshow plus Open the Box. There was £760 in the kitty and this again was won by our local farmers, John & Jennifer Parrish. Some money was put behind the bar, we did not drink too much of it - honestly, and the remainder was donated to the local Air Ambulance. October started with our Laying Up Supper which was held at the Eaton Oak. There were over 50 attendees who enjoyed a very nice meal with plenty to talk about and then back to Club for a night of drinking. It was held earlier this year so those that wanted to could stay on their boats. End of October and we had the Halloween’s night to look forward to. December we have the Christmas Noggin and the last event is our New Years Eve party. I must say I did feel sorry for

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all those boaters who went to all the trouble to fly to the hot spots abroad in the last week of September seeking the sun. What a week we had, non-stop sunshine and I hope many boaters managed to take advantage of this. Let us see some more of it next year. I would like to end by thankWho has more fun? ing our Social Secretary Dave for all the entertainment he has laid on for the Club this year, Clive for his Rok the Boat Roadshow, Brian for his Soft & Gentle, Mad & Mental Roadshow and also for the work Brian and Val have done for the club over the years. Thanks also to the Committee and all J

Jones Boatyard

Universal Film Quality at Whitehouse the members for making the Club so great. And finally, many congratulations to Sally Taylor who was appointed our new Commodore at the AGM and we all wish her the very best for next year. TONY DIGBY Vice Commodore

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Special SpecialOffer Offer

C aOUTBOARDS We WeA have have asmall smallquantity quantityof of GOBA GOBAClothing ClothingininStock Stock

����������������������������������������� Rugby Rugby Shirts Shirts Short ShortSleeve Sleeve £20 £20plus plusp&p p&p �������������������������������������������������� TTShirts Shirts £8 £8 plus plus p&p p&p �����������������������������������������������������������

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Special Offer

We have a small quantity of GOBA Clothing in Stock

Cruisers, Widebeam, Dutch Barges, � ������������ � ���������������������� or Narrowboats on sale with our brokerage. either used or brand ����������������������������������������������� new boats.


WANTED MORE BROKERAGE BOATS ... Fixed rates of commission �������������������������������������������������������������

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FREE hardstanding Free hardstanding for the winter season

� ���������������������������������������������� when you pay standard rates for liftout of your boat and block off in our secure compound at Buckden Marina. E mail us ������� at for lift out, pressure wash and anitifouling prices ��������������������������������������������������������������������������������� ��������������������������������������������

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�������������������������� GOBA NEWS (WINTER 2011) 27


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INSTRUCTION TO YOUR BANK ������������� � Ouse Boating Association Great Ltd ���������������������������� ��������� �������� OR BUILDING SOCIETY TO PAY PO BOX 244 ����������������������������������������������������� ���������������� BY DIRECT DEBIT Huntingdon ���������������������������������������������������������������������� Cambs Instruction to your Bank or Building Society PE29 6FE Please pay Great Ouse Boating Association Ltd Direct Debits from the

Name(s) of Account Holder(s)

account detailed in this instruction subject to the safeguards assured by the �������������� Direct Debit Guarantee.

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�������� I understand that this instruction may remain with Great Ouse Boating Association Ltd and, if so, details will be passed electronically to my ����������������������������������������������������� Bank/Building Society account number Bank/Building Society.


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Name and full postal address of your Bank/Building Society To The Manager Bank/ Building Society

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The Boathaven, Low Road, St. Ives, Cambs, PE27 5ET. Tel: 01480 494040 Date Postcode

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The Great Ouse Boating Association subscribes to the Direct Debit Guarantee scheme � �� ���� ���� � �����������

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30 GOBA NEWS (WINTER The Boathaven, Low2011) Road, St. Ives, Cambs, PE27 5ET. Tel: 01480 494040

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Seamaster 28 from £52,000

Standard specification; Hot and cold water, full galley facilities, shower, cassette or sea toilet, 240V shorepower, stereo CD, folding windscreen, canopy. 6 + 2 berths.

Viking 20 From £18,995

Viking 24 From £29,495

Full Viking and Seamaster range available. Starting at £17,995. Prices correct as of 1/1/12 For further information and viewings contact;

Riverside Marine and Leisure Ltd

Pike and Eel Marina, Overcote Lane, Needingworth, St Ives, Cambridgeshire PE27 4TW.

Tel: 01480 468666 Email:


GOBA MOORINGS King’s Lynn GOBA MOORINGS LOCKS EA MOORINGS Key: LOCKS EA MOORINGS 34 1 Fenlake Meadow Buoys 1 Bedford 1 Sovereig n Qua y GOBA Meadow 1 Fenlake 2 Priory Marina** 21 Old Sovereign Mills EA MOORINGS Quay2 CardingtonLOCKS1 3 Bedford Tidal Ouse GOBA MOORINGS Goldington 24 25 36 2 Key: Priory Marina** 33 35 1 Barford Fenlake Meadow 3 Mills EAGOBA Relief 4 Cardington Great 1 Barford Soverei 1 Bedford 2 2 Great Old Millsgn Quay 34 Castle PrioryPits Marina** 2 Paxton 4 Eaton Willin 3 Goldington 5 Little 2 Socon Old Mills 2 gton Carding ton Tidal Ouse Channel 25 Goldington 3 Middle Level 53 Offord 5 Barford 34 35 Offord Great 3 6 Castle Mills 3 GreatBarford Barford 3 Castle Mills EA LOCKS Relief 4 Great Barford Great Barford 4 32 6 Godmancheste r Mailers Meadow 6 Roxton 4 Eaton Socon 4 Willin gton 5 Little Paxton Pits Channel 25 4 87 Willington Downham Brampton 5 Little Paxton Pits 74 HouEaton ghtonOffordSocon 7 Eaton Middle Level 5 5 Socon Barford 6 Offord LOCKS 33 34 9 Hemingford 85 The Offord hin, St Ives 6DolpGodmanchester Roxton 5 8 St 6Neots Market 7 Mailers Meadow Barford 6 Offord 10 Noble’s Field Downham 23 8 Brampton 7 Hou ghton 7 Eaton Socon 9 Earith 9 Offord 11 Ferryboat 24 7 Mailers Meadow 6 Godmanchester 6 Roxton 9 Hemingford 8 gThe 8 pton St Neots Market 1 0 Hermita e Dolp hin, St Ives 10 Bram 25 12 One10Pound 3023 29 Noble’s Field 9 Lode Earith 9 Offord (Up ware ) 11 Reach 11 Godmanchester 8 Brampton 7 Houghton 7 Socon 13 Eaton Pike 11& Eel Ferryboat 24 10 Hermita g e ton p 10 Bram Wissey 1 2 Burwell Lode 12 Houg hton 31 32 14 Brownshill 12 One Pound 30 31 9 Hemingford 11 Stretham (Old West 11 gGodmanchester The Dolphin, St) Ives 8 15 St Neots Acre 3 Hundred 18 ford 1 3 Hemin Stoke Ferry Aldreth Drain Pike & Eel 13 Wissey 21 31 1 2 Reach Lode (Upware )14 St 12 10 Noble’s Field 1 4 Goldsmere Ives Houg hton Brownshill 14 Otter 16 Lazy 9 Earith 9 17 Offord 3 Burwell Lode 1 3 Hemin gford Stoke24Ferry 15 Aldreth Drain Stretham 1 5 Little1Thetford 1 5 Brownshill 20 21 32 33 11 Ferryboat 14 Hundred Acre 14 St Ives 16 Lazy Wicken Fen Otter 110 Adelaide 6 Queen Hermitage 1 6 Hermita ge 10 18 Brampton Hundred 1 5 Goldsmere 1 5 Brownshill 17 Lode Wicken Fen 23 24 Spinney Abbey 12 One Pound 19 Reach 28 23 1 7 Diamond 44 1 7 Up1ware 30 Foot 1 6 Little Thetford e 6 Hermita g11 18 Reach Hundred WickenLode Fen Reach Lode (Upware) 20 Godmanchester Waterbeach 111 Hole Farm 8 Toms 1 8 Bottisham 13 Pike & Eel 19 Waterbeach 29 22 23 Reach Lode 1 7 Queen Adelaide 1 7 Up ware 21 Railway Bridge Foot 25/26 22 willow 9 PrickBurwell 112 1 9 Baits 12 22 Houghton 20Lock Railway Bridge Waterbeach 1 8 DiamondLode 44 1 8 Bite Bottisham Stop 14 Brownshill 2 0 Mile19 End Toms Farm 20 Jesus Green 21 Stop Lock 22 26/27 27 Railway Bridge 22 PadnalHole FenFarm 1 9 Baits Bite13 23 Hemingford Gentle’s Hole 24 Hundred 13Sandhills, Hole 22 Gentle’s Stop Lock 15 Aldreth Drain p ortAcre 21 Little 21 Isleham Littleport 20 Prick Toms willow Hole Farm 20 Jesus Green 24 Santon Downham 21 22 27 23 Santon Gentle’sDownham Hole 26 25 214 2 Black port 22 Brandon Whittington Goldsmere Ives 21Horse, PrickLittle Mile End willow Farm 21 Isleham 14 25 St Littleport 22 16 Lazy Otter 23 Little Ouse 28 24 King’s Santon Lynn Downham 9 Creek 2 3 Brandon 2 2 Sandhills, Mile End Farm Littleport 2 3 Denver 22 Brandon 16 25 Buoys King’s Lynn 25 24 Little Ouse 2421 23 Little Thetford 15 17 Stretham Brownshill 215 Littleport 4 Station 9 2 3 Road, Sandhills, Black Horse, Littleport Littleport24 Relief Denver 15 2 3 Channel 16 Buoys 17 23 22 10 Fen 15 St Shi pBrandon 5 The Queen 216 24 Black Horse, Creek Little port2 5 Salters 24 Relief Lode Channel 18 Wicken Adelaide 16 Hermitage 18 Ive 18 10 2 6 Little2Ouse, Brandon 5 Station Brandon Road, CreekLittleport 2 5 Salters Lode 16 13 s 14 14 19 Reach Lode Ely 20 Prickwillow 19 2 6 The p 44Little port Station ShiRoad, Diamond 17 Upware 14 Town 7 Brandon 217 17 13 14 Ely 12 10 12 Prickwillow 15 2 7 Little p Brandon The Shi Ouse, 2 8 Windmill 20 Waterbeach 7 19 18 Toms Hole Farm 18 Bottisham Huntingdon 12 12 10 15 7 Little Brandon Ouse, Town Brandon 2 8 com p lex 2 9 Denver 19 20 Huntingdon 21 Railway Bridge 21 20 2 9 Brandon Windmill Town 22 21 8 15 6 319 Farm 0 Silt Fen Prick willow Bite 19 9 Baits Old22 WestStop Lock 13 8 11 6 16 30 Windmill Denver com p lex 31 Hilga y Old West 13 9 8 Lark 11 21 Mile End Farm 20 Jesus Green 108 Denver 31 Silt Fen com Farm p lex 14 16 Lark 320 Market 2 Downham 21 23 Gentle’s Hole 10 11 Great Ouse 15 13 3 2 gHil gFen Silt a y Farm 11 Great Ouse e 3 Stowbrid 321 7 14 16 Sandhills, Littleport 21 Isleham 24 Santon Downham 3 Downham Hilg a yMar yMarket 7 3 4 Wigg3enhall St 5 6 9 Stowbrid g eMarket 34 Downham 5 5 6 Black 22 9 Brandon Jude's 17 17 25 Whittington 322 Fen Horse, Littleport 5 Fidwell 5 Jude's Ferry Ferry 3 5 Wi ggenhall g e St Mar y 8 Stowbrid 11 8 9 Creek 23 Brandon Denver 23 1817 3 6 Fidwell Wiggenhall Fen St Mar y 16 St Neots 18 11 St Neots 12 7 3 Fidwell Fen 18 15 24 Station Road, Littleport 18 37 37 24 Relief Channel 6 6 7 1213 7 20 19 10 17 17 20 4 Ship 251 The 25 Salters Lode 4 1 3 33 3 Burwell Burwell 19 19 Ouse, Brandon 1 26 2** 14 1Little2** 13 3 5 3 5 14 River Cam River Cam 4 Reach 1 27 1Brandon Town4 Reach 19 18 19 2 2 12 7 10 12 15 28 Windmill 4 4 20 20 Cambridge Cambridge Bedford Bedford 29 Denver 2 complex 2




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8 St St 1 30 Silt Fen Farm 2** One free mooring non-EA non-EA Moorings are available at Bedford, Huntingdon, Ives, Ely, Clayhitheand andCambridge Cambridge 2** One night's freenight's mooring PublicPublic Moorings are6available at Bedford, Ives, Ely, Clayhithe Old West 13 9 Huntingdon, 11 31 Hilgay 8 10 14 16 32 Downham Market 11 Great Ouse 13 Stowbridge 33of GOBA 7 • Use moorings is free to members and hirers of craft owned by members of GOBA. 34 Wiggenhall St Mary 6 for 5 • There is a use maximum stay ofmoorings 48 hours. Boats priority over fishing youowned willby need of GOBA is free to members hirers of craft bya licence. members of GOBA The• the use of GOBA moorings is free totake members and9and hirers of which craft owned members of GOBA. 5 17 boat 35 Fidwell Fen 8and •• Moor asisclose as possible stay to other close up gaps if priority necessary. Help fellow members to find oraraft ontoayour • there a maximum stay of hours. 48 hours. Boats priority over fishing which you will need licence There a ismaximum of boats 48 Boats taketake over fishing forfor which youspace need licence. at busy times. • moor as close as possible to other boats and close up gaps if necessary. Help fellow members to space St Neots • Moor as close as possible to other boats and close up gaps if necessary. Help fellow members to findfind space or 11 • eep or children and animals underatproper control. There are often farm animals where moorings are on fields. 18 raft onto your boat busy times 37 raft onto your boat at busy times. 6 and dog mess. • Do •not lightchildren ground fires. Pick up litter keep animals under proper control. There are often farm animals where moorings are on fields. 7 Keep andtoand animals under proper 20 are on fields.17 •• Do not children tie your ropes GOBA mooring signs.4 control. There are often farm animals where moorings Do not light ground fires. Pick up litter and dog mess • do not light ground fires. Pick up litter and dog mess 1 Do not light groundthat fires. •• Members are reminded the use of GOBA mooring is at “own risk” and you are advised to have third party liability insurance. • do not tie your 3ropes to 3GOBA mooring signs 19 1 2** • Pick up litter and mess. that the use 3 dog 5 of GOBA mooring is at “own risk” and you are advised to have third • members are reminded River Cam • Do not tie your ropes to GOBA4mooring signs. 1 party 19 liability insurance • Members are reminded2 that the use of GOBA moorings is at “own risk” and you are advised to have third 4 20 party liability insurance. Cambridge Bedford Please remember that all GOBA committee members are unpaid volunteers. Sometimes they will be boating and may be unable to 2 respond immediately. 2** One night's free mooring non-EA Public Moorings are available at Bedford, Huntingdon, St Ives, General Secretary & for general enquiries: Alistair Reid 01480 493582 General Secretary & for general enquiries: Alistair Reid493582; 01480 493582 General & general enquiries: Alistair Reid 01480 15Secretary Willow Green, Needingworth, Huntingdon, Cambs PE27 4SW 15 Willow Green, Needingworth, Huntingdon Cambs PE27 4SW 1501366 Willow Green, Needingworth, Huntingdon, Cambs PE27 4SW Membership Secretary and Treasurer: Mike Mackay 501365 Membership: Mike Mackay 01353 664229 Membership: Mike Mackay 01366 501365 ; Moorings Officer -upstream upstream offrom St Ives: 303589 Moorings St Stuart Ives: Turvey Stuart 01234 Turvey 303589 Moorings upstream from StStIves: Stuart Turvey 01234 303589; Moorings Officer - downstream of Ives: Roy Editor: Wood 01353 663585 Publicity, Bulletins &GOBA GOBA News Editor: John Pridmore 07917 898168 Publicity, Bulletins & News John Pridmore 07917 Moorings downstream from St Ives: Roy Wood 07774 803293 Navigation problems and liaison with EA: Alistair Reid alistair.reid @ GOBA News Editor: David Mercer 01480 469046 Publicity, bulletins & EA GOBA News Editor: Pridmore 079170845 898168; River at Brampton 08708John 506506 Floodline 9881188 Publicity andSituation: PR: Nigel Handscombe Navigation problemsBoatWatch: and liaison with EA: Alistair Reid 01480 493582; alistair Cambridgeshire 0345 456 456 4 GOBA Bulletin: John Hodgson River Situation: EA at Brampton 08708 506506 Floodline: 0845 9881188 Navigation problems and liaison with EA: Alistair Reid alistair.reid @ Cambridgeshire Boat Watch: 0345 456 4564 River Situation: EA at Brampton 08708 506506 Floodline 0845 9881188 Cambridgeshire BoatWatch: 0345 456 456 4

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Useful Contacts

��������������� Useful Contacts

GOBAGOBA News is published by the by Great Boating Association which is registered underisthe Industrial and Provident Societies Act in theSocieties United Kingdom. News is published the Ouse GREAT OUSE BOATINGLtd. ASSOCIATION Ltd. which registered under the Industrial and Provident Act in the United Number 22120R Number 22120R Kingdom.

GOBAGOBA News is published by the GREAT BOATING Ltd. which registered under thefree Industrial Societies the United Kingdom. Number 22120R is run entirely by a OUSE committee of ASSOCIATION seasoned boaters whois volunteer their timeandforProvident the benefit ofAct theinGreat Ouse boating community. GOBAOpinions is run entirely by statements a committee ofof seasoned boaters who volunteer their free time for the benefit of the Great Ouse boating community. and contributors and endorsement of advertisers published in GOBA News are not necessarily supported by GOBA. Reproduction in whole Opinions and statements of contributors and endorsement of advertisers published in GOBA News are not necessarily supported by GOBA. Reproduction in whole or part is strictly prohibited. GOBA is a registered data user. or part is for strictly prohibited. GOBA is amarinas registered user.from our website or: GOBA PO Box 244 Huntingdon Cambridgeshire PE29 6FE or email: Application forms membership can be obtained at most on the data Great Ouse,

Application forms for membership can be obtained at most marinas on the Great Ouse, from our website or: GOBA PO Box 244 Huntingdon Cambridgeshire PE29 6FE or email:

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Members magazine published three times a year by the Great Ouse Boating Association


Members magazine published three times a year by the Great Ouse Boating Association