Cause for com­plaint?

Canal Boat - - News -

UN­MARKED SHAL­LOWS IN a river, dis­counts to boats on dis­con­nected wa­ter­ways, and a wind­ing hole be­ing taken out of use were among the var­ied com­plaints about the Canal & River Trust which were dealt with by the Wa­ter­ways Om­buds­man dur­ing the past year.

Over­all there was a mod­est re­duc­tion in en­quiries re­ceived by Om­buds­man An­drew Walker from 66 to 58. Ex­clud­ing those that didn’t re­late to CRT, hadn’t al­ready ex­hausted the in­ter­nal com­plaints pro­ce­dures, or were out­side his ju­ris­dic­tion left 20 for in­ves­ti­ga­tion.

Dur­ing the year, 18 in­ves­ti­ga­tions were com­pleted. Three com­plaints were up­held: A boat owner whose craft had been seized un­der a Sec­tion 8 no­tice (these are is­sued for re­moval of un­li­censed craft) and sub­se­quently dam­aged by frost (even though the owner had asked for it to be win­terised) re­ceived £11,500 for re­pairs. An un­der­wa­ter ob­struc­tion in the Sev­ern at Worces­ter had caused dam­age to craft but went un­marked for over a year. CRT re­fused to is­sue a house­boat cer­tifi­cate that was as­sign­a­ble to a new owner on sale

of the boat, with­out jus­ti­fi­ca­tion.

Six cases par­tially up­held in­cluded com­plaints in­volv­ing a boater whose craft had re­quired re­cov­ery by River Canal Res­cue af­ter be­com­ing stuck on an ob­struc­tion on tidal wa­ter on the Rib­ble Link; con­sul­ta­tion with boaters about a trial mooring plan for the Ken­net & Avon, and book­ings for the Liver­pool Link.

There were nine com­plaints not up­held, in­clud­ing claims that CRT should re­gard the Lan­caster Canal and the sec­tion of the Mont­gomery be­low Frank­ton Locks as ‘dis­con­nected wa­ter­ways’ el­i­gi­ble for a li­cence dis­count; and dam­age to a car from bar­ri­ers at a swing­bridge over the Ken­net & Avon.

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