CRT: ‘No Middle Level plans’
MIDDLE LEVEL NAVIGATIONS
A PETITION OPPOSING the Middle Level Commissioners’ (MLC) plans to introduce boat licensing requirements (see CB Aug 16) also suggests that the Canal & River Trust may wish to take over the Middle Level system – but CRT has told CanalBoat that it has no such plans.
Up to now the system which provides a link between the rivers Great Ouse and Nene has been free to navigate with no requirement for licensing, Boat Safety Scheme certificates or insurance. But all of these are proposed for introduction under bylaw changes which have been subject to a recent MLC consultation.
The National Association of Boat Owners and Inland Waterways Association have supported the moves, subject to provisos that the money raised goes to improve the currently very sparse boater facilities. However, other boaters, opposed to charges for “the last British navigation that is freely open to the general public” have launched a petition on thepetitionsite.com.
They also draw attention to proposals under discussion for transfer of Environment Agency rivers to CRT, and suggest that a CRT takeover of the Middle Level might follow on from the MLC bylaw changes. However, a spokesman for CRT said: “There are no plans at all for the Trust to take on the Middle Level Navigations.”