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Canal Boats

Canals were designed and built for cargo carrying boats. Some of these working boats can still be seen today. As the trade on the canals declined there was a rise in leisure boats.

Working Boats
The canals were built for these boats. They carried the cargoes around the canal network and helped bring about the Industrial Revolution. They carried cargoes from all across the globe.
A Mersey Flat Boat Mossdale Bacup
Pluto in the 1980s Scorpio in the 1980s Scorpio in the 2010s
Ribble: Ribble is a River Class Leeds & Liverpool Canal Short boat.
Kennet is a River Class L&L Canal working boat now looked after by the L&L Canal Society and used to promote the canal as a floating classroom and gallery.
Kennet in dry dock Kennet Kennet in dry dock
A41   Steam Boat on the River Aire
Liverpool Working Boat Video Coal Boat
Makili Video of a Working Boat A Wigan Coal Boat
Maintenance Boats
Todays canals are maintained by a fleet of boats that dredge, carry, push and pull.
  a Bantum Burscough
Leisure Boats
As the industrial and commercial use of the canals declined there was a rise in the number of leisure boats. The first leisure boats were converted from other uses. Many were lifeboats, from large ships, which had cabins added on to them. Others were converted working boats. Later leisure boats were purpose metal narrowboats have become the dominant fashion on the canals. A new narrowboat can cost as much as a house and will have all the facilities of one too.
Converted lifeboat Converted lifeboat Converted tug, Raven
Converted lifeboat Amaryllis 1960's Callum Craft 17
a wooden cruiser 32ft cabin cruiser with central cockpit and rear sundeck. a long cruiser
Fiberglass narrowboat Eller a reproduction of a River Class working barge.  
The Family Fleet
These are some of the boats that my family have owned and holidayed in on the canals over the years. We still have Albatross (2).
The May Queen Mistral Albatross
Albatross Albatross II Albatross II
Sadly there are quite a few wrecks on the canal. Sometimes people just cant afford to run their boats and abandon them. Other times they sink in bad weather or are damaged and fall into ruin. They are usually collected up, fibreglass boats are scrapped and narrowboats are auctioned off.
A sunken ex-lifeboat. A wreck.  



This page was last updated on 10-Oct-2015
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