Planning Meeting Minutes – Feb 2016

Minutes of a meeting held at Longwood Boat Club

Saturday 27th February 2016


Present: Hilary Whitby (Treasurer)           Marilyn Layfield (Membership Sec)

Martin Turner (Commodore)                      Ged Layfield (Secretary)

Andrew & Wendy Dyke                Jayne & Mike Provost                    Richard & Sallie Gleed

Ged & Jan Bird                                  Polly & Neil Fothergill

Apologies were received from:

Sue Turner          Lesley & Peter Taylor    Mo & Mike Wood            Ric Whitby          Ann Heron

Roger & Yvonne Olver   Roger & Lynn Mellors     Shiela & John Brown       Bob & Lynn Hallam

Bruce & Margaret Paul                  Jim & Joyce Hanks           Geoff & Beryl Smith

Jan Thomas          Robin & Jackie Stammers         Bob & Nicola Atkins


1:            The meeting was opened by the Commodore at 1pm. Martin welcomed everyone and thanked them for attending.

2:            Bob Hallam (Cruise Manager) was due to give a proposed outline for cruising in 2016 however, Bob suffered a severe trapped nerve which left him only able to get pain relief by kneeling. It was out of the question that he should attend in such a state (more later).
Martin stepped into the breach and gave Bob’s outline proposals – a hard copy of which was provided for those attending. The proposal document has also been posted on the website: /2016/01/planning-meeting-february-2016/

Several Cruises were considered:

Oxford to Lechlade:
Polly and Neil informed us that they will be on the Thames this summer with their new Dutch Barge; there was a possible issue of clearing Osney Bridge with their wheelhouse but they would like to link up with 4C’s boats whenever possible. There were no other takers at the meeting for this particular cruise.

Tewkesbury to Stratford:
There was a good deal of interest in visiting the River Avon Festival (from either direction) but the dates (first week in July) did not correspond with Bob’s itinerary. Five boats declared an interest in cruising together to the festival and Martin is enquiring about reserving moorings for those attending. Anyone else who might like to attend should liaise with Martin regarding moorings.

Andrew Dyke gave a good description of the event explaining how it works with narrowboats rafted up on the River virtually outside the theatre. There are lots of musical events, the market, a kids arena, food fair, fireworks and around 150 boats.

Stratford – Pershore:
A trip measured in hours rather than days and a festival that takes place a week after Stratford’s festival might appeal to some but there would be a good deal of waiting around.  Andrew pointed out that there are some lovely safe moorings in rural locations where one can pass the time or polish the brasses! One of the highlights (pardon the pun) is an illuminated procession of GRP boats which apparently put on a very good show. The event is traditionally a themed affair. Last year it was on a Viking theme and was very well done. There are mock battles and all kinds of events going on

Andrew and Martin volunteered to jointly manage those cruises. It was proposed that boats partaking of this cruise meet at Twinning.

Wey & Godalming:
Navigation Authority: National Trust
Date of first use: 1653
Locks 16
Start point: River Thames.
Access to this navigation is from the Thames. Andrew advised the meeting that the Port of London Authority has tightened up on a number of regulations for boats using the Thames, particularly regarding use of VHF radios:

For more information about all safety rules on the tidal Thames visit

River Lee & Stort:
There was some interest shown in cruising this navigation. Martin advised the meeting that the run down to Bishop Stortford was particularly scenic but the run to Hertford was somewhat less so but worth doing.

Mersey Estuary: (Fully Booked)
Hilary gave an outline of their already planned cruises which include the Mersey Estuary crossing to Liverpool. This organised convoy takes place on two dates (1st and 2nd June) but both convoys are now fully booked. These dates coincide with the Riverside Festival which is very popular, moorings will be difficult to get at this stage.

Leeds & Liverpool:
Later in June Hilary & Ric plan to cruise the Leeds & Liverpool to Leeds. En-route they plan to visit the IWA Campaign Rally at the Eldonian Village (10-12th June) any club member wishing to join them will be most welcome.

4C’s Rally:
Martin suggested that the 4c’s might consider a rally in Gloucester Dock or on the G&S at Sharpness.

Overall there was no general agreement on club cruises for 2016 with the exception of the River Avon Festival. Bob has produced an interesting mix but the proposed dates are unsuitable for most who have made alternative plans. There may, of course be more interest from the wider membership who were unable to attend at Longwood. Anyone interested in any of the proposals should contact Bob Hallam (Cruise Manager) for further detailed discussion.

3:         To receive proposals for 2017 Cruise Planning.

This subject was discussed around the room with the following proposed cruises:

York – Newark which was expanded to take in Chesterfield and possibly a ring route round the Fens. Most of the members attending showed considerable interest in this proposal. There might also be the opportunity to cross the Wash for those who missed out last time.

Hiring as a club or individual to reach some distant navigations:
Also considered was the possibility of 4C’s hiring a boat or boats for a trip on the Falkirk Wheel, a cruise on the Mon & Brec and a cruise in France where Polly and Neil expect to be next year.

4:         To receive nominations for members to manage all or part of any proposed                       cruise.
As previously mentioned, MartinTurner (Commodore) and Andrew Dyke agreed without any hesitation to jointly manage a River Avon Cruise to coincide with the Festival. If anyone else has a proposed club cruise that they would be happy to manage, please liaise with Bob.

5:         Update on the CCT:

Martin gave a brief update of progress and bids to the Heritage Lottery Fund.
Unfortunately due to Bob’s incapacity the visual presentation could not go ahead.

Martin then telephoned Bob, put him on speaker and the group sent their very noisy best wishes for Bob’s rapid recovery! For those hungry for information, I will ask Bob (When he is recovered) to put together some pictures and an appreciation of recent progress which I will then post on the website.

6:         AWCC:
New membership cards for 2016 were issued to those at the meeting. Any other member requiring a new card can obtain one by contacting Marilyn Layfield  (Membership Secretary). Do bear in mind that those issued last year are valid only for 12 months so if you plan to use the AWCC facilities this season, you will need a new card.

7:         A.O.B.
Polly has a rather fetching light grey fleece bearing the 4 C’s logo which is unworn/unused and is surplus to requirements. It is a size 18. Please contact Polly if you are interested in buying this item.

8:         Closing:

The meeting was closed at 1420 by the Commodore.


A Raffle was held which raised £21:00. This was rounded up by the Secretary to £25 and donated to Longwood Boat Club for the kind use of their clubhouse.

The Fish and chips etc. pre-ordered arrived in timely fashion just prior to the meeting although there was a surplus due to unforeseen cancellations taking place the day before. The surplus was shared amongst the moorers around the clubhouse. It will be necessary to accept payment from those who ordered but were unable to attend.


Ged Layfield,