Planning Meeting – February 2016

The 2016 Planning Meeting venue has now been arranged and confirmed. This has become an annual event enabling us to meet up with old friends, introduce ourselves to new members and generally catch up. All members are cordially invited.

The meeting will take place between:

12noon and about 2:30pm on Saturday 27th February 2016 at Longwood Boat Club, Rushall Top Lock, Aldridge Road, Walsall, WS24 2JS

We hope you can arrange to be there to meet up again, have a chat, discuss both early ideas for 2017 cruises (yes, I did say 2017), this year’s (2016) cruises and of course reminisce about previous ones. Bring along your photo’s, P.C., Ipad, Tablet etc. and show us all!

With much help from Brenda Ward (Treasurer), the Longwood Boat Club has again offered their clubhouse for us to use. The clubhouse is undergoing some light refurbishment at present and although the work will not affect our use of the premises, heating at present is provided by fan heaters and it may be wise to wrap up warm.

We propose to partake of suitable refreshments shortly after we arrive, followed by a raffle, and then conclude with the meeting and social.  An agenda is posted below.

There is a very good Fish and Chip shop close by who will deliver to the venue. When we are nearer the date, I’ll find out what can be delivered, let you know and then place the order with a couple of days to go! Last year the fish and chip lunch shortly after arrival worked very well and is recommended. Hot drinks will also be available. If you prefer to partake of a glass of beer or wine, you will need to be suitably equipped!

In order to defray the (very reasonable) cost of the venue, we would like to hold a raffle, the proceeds of which will be donated to Longwood Boating Club. If you have a small unwanted Christmas gift or a spare bottle of wine to donate, we would be very grateful. Last year some members donated home-made produce, which would again be welcome.

Please DO come along to the meeting, letting me know that you can as soon as possible so that we can finalise arrangements.

Ged Layfield, Secretary, Cotswolds Canal Cruising Club.  –  contact me here


To open the meeting and welcome those present         Martin Turner – Commodore

To welcome new members                                                Martin Turner – Commodore

Apologies for absence                                                        Martin Turner – Commodore

To discuss proposals for the 2016 season                      Bob Hallam – Cruise Manager

To receive suggestions for 2017                                       Bob Hallam – Cruise Manager

To close the meeting                                                           Martin Turner – Commodore

There will then be a brief presentation and video outlining progress of the Cotswolds canal Trust given by Bob and Martin after which, those who wish to will be able to show their own pictures etc.

Cruises to consider:

If anyone has any ideas about where they would like to cruise with a group of 4C’s boats, please let me know. (contact me  here ) and we’ll see if that cruise can be either accommodated or incorporated in another in the same general area.

In the broadest terms possible at this stage, I propose that after two years “oop t’North” we cruise in the South East this year. There are many canals and rivers down there that we have not yet experienced.

Since I consider that Cormorant II (that’s 2 not eleven!) does not have a generous freeboard – and because of the cost of employing a competent person, I will not take her down the estuary to Bristol. Statement of fact!

If you wish to traverse the Kennett and Avon West to East, a cruise leader will need to be nominated and the proper arrangements made. This can be discussed in more detail at the planning meeting if required.

My personal preferences for 2016 are as follows:

1)      Up or down the Severn to Tewkesbury,

2)      UP the River Avon (another one we’ve never been UP!), to Stratford Upon Avon.

3)      South Stratford to Kingswood Junction.

4)      Grand Union to Napton Junction

5)      South Oxford to Oxford

At this point, it would be possible – even desirable on account of our Club roots, to append a few days:

6)      going up the River Thames to Lechlade.

7)      Return to Reading.

Other options are:

8)      Traverse the Kennet and Avon Canal, either part-way or the whole way to Bristol.

9)      Continue Downriver to Weybridge

10)   Explore the Wey and Godalming Navigation

11)   Explore the Basingstoke Canal –if it is available again!

12)   Continue Downriver to Teddington Lock.


13)   Leave the River at Brentford, rejoin us at Limehouse or later;


14)   Travel down the Tidal River to Limehouse and exit the river into Limehouse Basin. (I will get in touch (again) with St. Pancras CC to assist on this passage)

15)   Explore the Lee and Stort Navigations.

16)   Return via Regents Canal to Paddington, Little Venice.

17)   Paddington Arm then North up Grand Union.

18)   Explore the Slough Arm (GU)

19)   Explore the Wendover Arm (GU)

20)   Explore the Aylesbury Arm (GU)

Basically, we would now return to our home moorings after another great summer of cruising with great friends and having more fun and enjoyment than is probably good for us all!

I would welcome any offers to organise and/or lead any part of these cruising sections, especially if you are familiar with these waters.

At the moment, times and dates have now been worked out and can be discussed in more detail at the planning meeting but due to the fairly linear nature of the proposal, it is possible to jump in or out at many different places – unless as some members have already declared – you happen to be on the Leeds and Liverpool Canal or similar!

Happy Cruising,

Bob Hallam
Cruise manager