In late 2005 British Waterways – now Canal & River Trust – announced it was to completely upgrade it’s work boat fleet. Many of its boats would be disposed of and replaced by new, purpose-built vessels. Those to be disposed of would be divided into two categories, those with ‘heritage value’ and those without.
The vessels being without ‘heritage value’ would be sold off, while those with would be given to voluntary bodies that could prove that they had the wherewithal to restore these vessels and use them appropriately. As a canal trust with albeit only short stretches of canal H & G CT thought that ‘proper’ boats would be good for the canal and began to take an interest in the ‘heritage boats’ that BW were making available.
The first boat that The H&G CT acquired was Alder in May 2006. Since then further boats have joined the fleet and much work has been done by enthusiastic teams of volunteers both on the engines, the outer structures. Extensive cleaning and preparation was carried out by Trust volunteers before it painting could begin. The boats now look great painted in the H&G house colours!
H&G CT is immensely grateful to British Waterways for their generosity in donating our Heritage Boat fleet for use on the H&G Canal.