The shape of things to come?

Canal Boat - - Letters - PAUL SELL­ING,

LY­ING ABED ONE Sun­day morn­ing, my part­ner and I were dis­cussing this year’s cruis­ing plans. We let our minds wan­der around the gen­eral sub­ject of boat­ing and re­alised that our plans were greatly in­flu­enced by the likely num­ber of boats on some ar­eas of canals. There are some­times quite a lot.

You re­cently in­cluded a Boat-builders An­nual which listed 20 com­pa­nies – which rep­re­sents, I sup­pose, around half of the avail­able builders. If they av­er­aged over a year three 50-foot­ers each then that adds up to over a mile of boats – each year. Are canals be­ing re-opened or cre­ated at that rate?

From there our minds wan­dered to­wards the fu­ture, and how locks could pos­si­bly be op­er­ated by your li­cence smart card which would be valid for x many miles of cruis­ing, de­ter­mined by when you took out the li­cence. ( That sort of tech­nol­ogy al­ready ex­ists in Ire­land, at­tested to by Ti­mothy West & Prunella Scales in GreatCanalJour­neys). With a sys­tem like that the Canal & River Trust would be able to tell who had left the pad­dles open and other de­tails. CRT could also op­er­ate an af­fil­i­ated credit card which could of­fer ‘canal miles’ in­stead of cash­back or bonus points as re­wards (or, of course, any or all of them). The power to op­er­ate the locks could come from tur­bines lo­cated in the by­wash, per­haps, as well as the na­tional grid.

All of this, if im­ple­mented, would en­tail huge in­vest­ment so will prob­a­bly never hap­pen. But... just a few ideas to set some hares run­ning.

nb Pea­Pod No.1

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.