‘Barging celebs’ boost boat hiring
BOAT HIRE FIRMS are reporting healthy bookings for holidays this year – and some in the business are crediting the latest waterways TV series for boosting the numbers.
Channel 5’s Celebrity Carry On Barging, featuring (pictured left to right) Simon Callow, Lorraine Chase, Debbie McGee and Nigel Havers boating on waterways including the Llangollen and Kennet & Avon, is being held responsible by Ed Helps, the head of ABC Boat Hire, for the spike in bookings. “Since the first episode on 17 February, we’ve seen an uplift in web traffic of nearly 40 percent and our bookings for the past two weeks are up 50 percent on this time last year,” he said.
Other members of the Drifters group are also seeing bookings soar: by 41 percent in the case of Black Prince holidays and 13 percent at Napton Narrowboats. Mr Helps added that other programmes such as Channel 4’s Great Canal Journeys are also doing their bit to bring canal holidays to new audiences.