By Kevin Yarwood, manager of our Great Haywood canal boat rental base
We know – through the many comments we get about greener boating and the sales of aquatic-friendly ‘Poddy’ cleaning products in our boat yard shops – that many of our customers are keen to be as environmentally friendly as possible on their canal boat holiday.
Here at Anglo Welsh, we are gradually taking steps to help reduce our footprint, particularly when it comes to designing our new boats. For example all our new Bond, Heritage and Constellation class boats have energy efficient LED lighting and the latest engines with lower emissions.
To help spread the word, here are 10 reasons why narrowboat holidays are a greener holiday option, and the best ways to reduce your impact on the environment while afloat:
Reduce your carbon footprint – an Anglo Welsh holiday has at a 20 times smaller carbon footprint than a two-hour flight, and as soon as you swap your car for one of our well-maintained boats, you’ll be using a third of the fuel and emitting a sixth of the pollution. Plus, by heating your water from the engine and charging your batteries while cruising, you can further reduce your carbon footprint while away.
Enjoy the fresh air – there are over 2,000 miles of navigable canals and rivers in England and Wales, many running through long stretches of countryside where the air is cleaner, fresher and more invigorating.
Get in touch with nature – look out for the many species of wildlife that live on our waterways, including the more frequently sited ducks, swans, damselflies, dragonflies, hedgerow birds and fish, as well as protected species like water voles, otters and kingfishers, and you’ll feel closer to nature.
Recycle more – we offer good recycling facilities at all our yards, so separate your recyclables whilst on the boat and if you miss recycling opportunities on your journey, you can dispose of them responsibly on your return.
Use green cleaning products – be kinder to the environment and aquatic life by using the Poddy cleaning products provided onboard and bring microbead free toiletries with you for your holiday afloat.
Burn greener fuels – if you book one of our boats with a multi fuel stove, burn the environmentally friendly fire logs provided (and also available in our shop at Great Haywood) as these are made from recycled sawdust and wax instead of coal.
Bring your own hot drinks cups – so if you stop off to buy a coffee somewhere on your narrowboat holiday you won’t need a ‘difficult to recycle’ disposable cup.
Reduce your use of plastic bottles – you can use water from the boat’s tank to make a cup of tea but you will need to stock up on drinking water, so we suggest bringing one large bottle or canteen, decanting it into reusable cups and topping up at water points.
Bring your own shopping bags – ready for shop-stops en route and avoid products with excess packaging.
Bag all rubbish – help keep rubbish and plastic out of our waterways by making sure all your bin bags are tied securely so they can’t spill open, and only dispose of your bagged domestic rubbish inside bins marked domestic waste.
This week Anglo Welsh’s narrowboat ‘Butterfly’ appeared on BBC One’s popular ‘Antiques Road Trip’, taking presenter Catherine Southon across the awesome Pontcysyllte Aqueduct on the Llangollen Canal in North Wales.
To celebrate, we’ve put together a list of our Top 6 moments in the spotlight over the last 12 months:
The Antiques Road Trip visited Trevor. Back in April, presenter Catherine Southon boarded our 62ft-long narrowboat ‘Butterfly’ at Trevor to film an episode of this BBC One favourite. Based at our canal boat hire base at Trevor on the Llangollen Canal in North Wales, ‘Butterfly’ is one of our popular Trent II Class narrowboats, offering flexible accommodation for up to eight people. If you missed it, the episode (screened on Wednesday 19 September at 4.30pm) can be found on the BBC iPlayer until 18 October. Image c/o Antiques Road Trip – STV Productions/BBC.
Globalmouse Travels visited the Kennet & Avon Canal. Last summer, Nichola West (AKA Globalmouse), currently ranked number two in Vuelio’s ‘Top 10 UK Family Travel Blogs’, enjoyed an Anglo Welsh family narrowboat holiday aboard ‘Selwood’. Setting off from our canal boat rental base at Bath, she travelled with her three children to Bradford on Avon and back over the August bank holiday. Describing their first night afloat in her review (published Sep 2017) she says: “It felt lovely mooring up on the side of the bank, hammering in pegs to tie-up our boat…on this quiet bit of the Kennet and Avon Canal. We cooked up pasta in our lovely little kitchen and listened to the gentle sounds of the river as we played card games afterwards and headed off to bed.”
Jasper Winn wrote the last chapter of ‘Water Ways’ aboard Summer. At the end of last year, the writer and slow adventurer Jasper Winn took to the water aboard Anglo Welsh’s 67ft Bond Class narrowboat ‘Summer’ to write the final chapter of ‘Water Ways’. Published in July by Profile Books, ‘Water Ways’ is a mix of travel, history and nature writing, in which Winn describes his year-long adventure exploring Britain’s waterways on foot and by bike, in a kayak and on narrowboats. ‘Summer’, based at our canal boat hire centre at Wootton Wawen on the Stratford Canal in Warwickshire, features in the final chapter.
John Craven cruised along the Llangollen Canal. Last October, the BBC’s Countryfile Magazine featured an article by veteran presenter John Craven recounting his holiday aboard our beautiful 67ft Bond Class boat for up to six people ‘Askrigg’. John set off from our canal boat rental base at Trevor for a short break with his two eldest grandsons, Charlie and Oliver, and said: “It had been an exhilarating, slow-motion few days. We had glided though breath-taking countryside while being overtaken by walkers and their dogs, joggers, cyclists and kayakers. Many peaceful hours of travelling had been dotted with moments of tension…as I tried to master the skills needed for a method of transportation that hasn’t changed in centuries. We agreed it had been far more than just a short holiday. The Llangollen Canal had given us an experience we’d never forget.”
The Daily Telegraph recommended Tardebigge. Earlier this month, Daily Telegraph travel writer Sarah Baxter listed ‘Cruise the canals like you are in Venice’ as one of her ’30 amazing weekend breaks to extend the British Summer’. The article explains that our canal boat hire base at Tardebigge on the Worcester & Birmingham Canal near Bromsgrove if a five hour, lock free cruise from Birmingham’s centre where you can “use your boat as a hotel…or pootle along some of the 100 navigable miles of urban waterways”.
The Times recommended Wootton Wawen. In July, the Sunday Times Weekend magazine travel section suggested taking a canal trip through Shakespeare country as part of its ’30 great British mini-breaks’ feature. The article highlights the opportunity to cruise along the Stratford Canal from our canal boat hire base at Wootton Wawen, reaching moorings by the Shakespeare Memorial Theatre in Stratford upon Avon in just six hours, perfect for exploring “Bard-related sites such as Anne Hathaway’s Cottage and Shakespeare’s Birthplace”.
Visiting local markets and independent shops to find fresh ingredients for cooking on board can be a fun and inspiring element of a holiday afloat. The 2,000 miles of navigable waterways that criss-cross England and Wales pass through dozens of market towns and cities, offering exciting local produce and a welcome break from the usual weekly supermarket shop.
Here are our top 10 destinations for foodies looking for special treats and ingredients:
Snugburys ice cream shop at Hurleston. This famous ice cream shop making award winning ice cream is close to the Shropshire Union Canal at Hurleston near Nantwich. Located on the Snugbury family farm, this wonderful shop offers 55 mouth-watering flavours, all made from fresh British cream, including chocolate brownie, raspberry pavlova, crème brulee, clotted cream vanilla, amaretto and Turkish delight. From our canal boat hire base at Bunbury, it takes just one hour to reach Hurleston Junction, and from there it’s a short walk to Snugburys.
Stone Farmers Market. Renowned as the ‘foodie capital’ of North Staffordshire, on the first Saturday of every month (except January), Stone’s popular Farmers Market lines the town’s pretty Georgian High Street. With over 50 stalls offering locally-reared meats, breads, preserves, cakes, honey, cheese, fruit, vegetables and smoked fish, it’s a mecca for foodies. From our narrowboat hire base at Great Haywood on the Trent & Mersey Canal it takes five hours to reach Stone.
The Cheese Shop at Bradford on Avon. Located in the heart of historic Bradford on Avon, this little shop is bursting with flavours and aromas, pure heaven for cheese lovers. As well as an impressive range of fine cheeses, there Cheese Shop offers exciting lunch options from its well-stocked deli, including delicious home-made quiches, prepared and baked daily, as well as a large selection of local chutneys to go perfectly with the cheese. From our narrowboat rental base at Bath, it takes just four hours to reach Bradford on Avon.
Stratford’s Farmers Market. On the first and third Saturday of each month, Stratford upon Avon’s Farmers Market meets in Rother Street, selling a wide range of local produce. From rare breed and game meats, organic vegetables, eggs, cheese, freshly baked bread and cakes to wine, confectionery, jams and pickles. There’s also a fantastic hot food stand offering outdoor bred roasted pork, bacon and sausage. From our canal barge hire base at Wootton Wawen on the Stratford Canal near Henley-in-Arden it six hours to reach Stratford upon Avon.
Bailey’s Deli in Llangollen. The pretty town of Llangollen on the edge of the Berwyn Mountains, offers a range of independent shops, including Bailey’s Deli. Located in the Town Hall, Bailey’s offers a great range of pies, sausage rolls, Welsh Oggies, Scotch eggs, cooked butcher’s meat, cakes, farm ice cream, chocolates, fudge, sandwiches, cheeses, mustards, jams and marmalade, as well as ales, whiskies, spirits and mead. From our boat yard at Trevor on the Llangollen Canal in North Wales, it takes just two hours to reach Llangollen.
The Covered Market in Oxford. This fabulous historic market space in the centre of Oxford offers products from a large number of specialist independent traders, offering crafts, food and drink. Edible fare includes fresh fruit, vegetables, breads, cakes, meats and cheeses. Moorings at Hythe Bridge, just a short walk from the Covered Market can be reached from our Thames boating holiday base at Eynsham, near Witney.
Keelham Farm Shop in Skipton. Showcasing the region’s best locally grown and reared produce, Keelham Farm Shop on Gargrave Road in Skipton stocks produce from over 400 local suppliers in dedicated butchers, greengrocer, bakery and delicatessen sections. It also has an ale house offering beers from more than 20 local breweries. Skipton can be reached in just three hours from our narrowboat hire base on the Leeds & Liverpool Canal at Silsden.
Fresh fish at the Bull Ring Indoor Market. The indoor market at Birmingham’s magnificent Bull Ring is home to one of the UK’s largest fish markets. Open from Monday to Saturday, 9am to 5.30pm, as well as an impressive choice of quality fish and seafood, visitors to the indoor market and also buy meat, exotic fruits and vegetables. From our canal boat hire base at Tardebigge on the Worcester & Birmingham Canal near Bromsgrove, it takes five hours to reach city centre moorings in Gas Street Basin.
Aubrey Allen’s butchers in Leamington Spa. Offering outstanding quality cooked and uncooked meat, as well as deli products and artisan cheeses, this multi-award winning family business on Warwick Street is one of the best known butchers in the Midlands. Leamington Spa can be reached in six hours from our Stockton boat yard on the Grand Union Canal in Warwickshire.
Treacle Market in Macclesfield. Named after a centuries old incident when a treacle wagon overturned in Macclesfield’s cobbled town centre, Treacle Market offers exceptional food and drink, including local farm cheese, great north pies, sourdough, apple juice and fresh farm eggs. The market takes place the last Sunday of the month, from 10am to 3.30pm. The journey to Macclesfield takes 21 hours from our canal boat hire base on the Trent & Mersey Canal at Great Haywood.
Hooray! Spring is in the air and nature is flourishing around Anglo Welsh canal routes
Spring is always welcome when it finally breaks cover, but following an especially harsh British winter of rain, snow and low temperatures, it’s fair to say most people will greet this year’s first change of season with even more enthusiasm than usual. The nature lovers at Anglo Welsh’s ten narrowboat bases across England and Wales are no different!
Spring is a time when the UK’s waterways and the surrounding countryside are teeming with activity and wildlife. It is a time to step off your narrowboat for a leisurely stroll in a bluebell wood, to relish the cobalt blue mist and the sweet smells, or to enjoy the spectacle of a sea of fresh wild daffodils.
Experiencing a dawn chorus on a picturesque canal is one of life’s great pleasures. Get up at first light to catch the first tentative calls, then, as the sky brightens, more and more birds will join in, building to a mighty crescendo. Later in the day, watch peacock butterflies circle one another in a delicate courtship, all against a background of white blossom and clear blue skies. And then there is the delightful, almost forgotten sensation of warm sun on bare skin.
Spring is certainly a great time to get back out and enjoy the UK’s canal side countryside, whether that means cruising on one of Anglo Welsh’s modern narrowboats, strolling along a towpath, or attending one of the season’s many canal side festivals and shows, among them the Easter Boat Gathering at the National Waterways Museum, Drifters Open Day, Skipton Waterways Festival and the Crick Show.
After a busy winter of maintenance and TLC at Anglo Welsh’s 10 bases, our fleet of 160 modern and spacious narrowboats are all shipshape and ready for another season on the waterways. And spring is a time of year that never fails to inspire Anglo Welsh’s canal-based staff.
As Kev, the Base Manager at Great Haywood in Staffordshire, puts it: “I love spring along the Staffordshire and Worcestershire Canal because it tells me winter is over and spring brings new beginnings, new growth, new colour and new life.”
Oliver, Fleet Manager at Trevor in North Wales, is equally smitten with the new season. “Spring on the Llangollen canal is magical as the days begin to get longer and warmer and all the wild flowers start to bloom, including our Welsh daffodil. People can also enjoy the view from our narrowboats as they pass fields full of baby animals.”
“One of the pretty spring sights along the Worcester and Birmingham canal are the bluebells on approach to Shortwood Tunnel,” says Sarah, Office Manager at Tardebigge in Worcestershire. “Hearing all the spring bird songs, seeing all the young lambs and all the blossom on the trees are some of my favourite things about being by the canal side in spring.”
So, no more winter coats, no more short days and no more Beasts from the East. Spring is finally here and Anglo Welsh welcomes it with open arms!
To book a holiday or spring break on any of Anglo Welsh’s fleet, call our friendly booking team on 0117 304 1122.
Set off together this summer for a micro-adventure afloat, exploring the countryside and visiting exciting waterside attractions in some of Britain’s best-loved towns and cities.
Here are our Top 10 family destinations this Summer to help you plan ahead:
Explore The Big Hoot in Birmingham. From our Tardebigge base on the Worcester & Birmingham Canal near Bromsgrove, it’s a five-hour, lock free journey to moorings at Gas Street Basin in Birmingham City Centre, where this summer (until 7 September) 89 colourful owl sculptures have taken position across the city to form a public trail. All the giant owls have been sponsored by companies and organisations and at the end of the event, they will be auctioned off to raise money for Birmingham Children’s Hospital.
Visit the Tolkien exhibition at the Bodleian Library in Oxford. From our Oxford base, it’s a tranquil three-hour cruise along the River Thames to moorings at Hythe Bridge, perfect for exploring Oxford’s city centre, including the awe-inspiring Bodleian Library, one of the oldest libraries in Europe and home to over 12 million printed items. The Library’s new exhibition, in the Weston Library, ‘Tolkien: Maker of Middle-earth’ (1 June to 28 October 2018) explores the creative genius of the ‘Lord of the Rings’ and ‘The Hobbit’ author, through manuscripts, artwork, maps, letters and artefacts.
Walk the walls of Chester. From our canal boat hire base on the Shropshire Union Canal at Bunbury, the Roman City of Chester is a delightful seven-hour, nine-lock cruise away, travelling through the rolling Cheshire landscape. Once there, take time to explore this great heritage city home to the most complete City Walls in Britain dating back to the Roman occupation 2,000 years ago. During this fascinating two-mile walk, you can follow in the footsteps of the Roman soldiers patrolling the walls and enjoy a unique perspective of Chester with panoramic views on both sides.
Glide across ‘The Stream in the Sky’ in North Wales. Just five minutes by boat from our base on the Llangollen Canal at Trevor, boaters encounter the incredible World Heritage Status Pontcysyllte Aqueduct, truly one of the ‘Seven Wonders of the Waterways’. Its cast iron trough, along which boats travel, is supported on iron arched ribs and carried 30 metres high above the Dee Valley on 19 hollow pillars. On 14 July, the annual ‘Under The Arches Music Festival’, one of Wales’ best-loved music, light, laser & firework shows, will take place beneath Thomas Telford’s stunning Pontcysyllte Aqueduct!
See the ‘Becoming Henry Moore’ exhibition in Leeds. From our base at Silsden on the Leeds & Liverpool Canal, on a week’s holiday, canal boat holiday-makers can travel to Leeds and back, cruising for a total of 34 hours and passing through 56 locks. Here, boaters can moor up and visit the Henry Moore Foundation where this summer, the Museum’s ‘Becoming Henry Moore’ exhibition charts Britain’s foremost modern sculptor’s creative trajectory from 1914 to 1930. Tickets to the exhibition include entrance to the sculpture gardens and Henry Moore’s studios (until 2 October).
Enjoy tea and cake at the Jane Austen Centre in Bath. From our base on the Kennet & Avon Canal at the historic town of Bradford on Avon in Wiltshire, boaters can reach Bath Top Lock, in just six hours, travelling through one lock and over two beautiful Bath stone aqueducts. From there, it’s a 15-minute walk into Bath City Centre where visitors can find the Jane Austen Centre, dedicated to celebrating Bath’s most famous resident. Set in a classically decorated Georgian town house, you can get into the Jane Austen spirit by dressing up in the exhibition’s Regency costumes and ordering a cup of real leaf tea and homemade cake at the Regency themed Tea Rooms.
Step back in time at Shakespeare’s Birthplace in Stratford upon Avon. From our base at Wootton Wawen on the Stratford Canal, it’s a delightful six-hour, 17-lock cruise journey through the Warwickshire countryside to moorings in the centre of Stratford-upon-Avon. From here, it’s a short walk to the town’s theatres, shops, restaurants and museums, including the Tudor house where Shakespeare was born and grew up. Here visitors can enjoy hearing tales of Shakespeare’s family life, live theatre performances on demand and seeing rare artefacts from the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust’s collections.
Visit the Food & Drink Capital of Staffordshire. From our base at Great Haywood, near Stafford, it’s a peaceful five-hour, four-lock journey along the Trent & Mersey Canal to the bustling market town of Stone. With an excellent choice of restaurants, pubs and wine bars, regular markets, its own micro ‘Lymestone Brewery’ and a series of exciting ‘foodie’ festivals, Stone is known as The Food and Drink Capital for good reason.
Journey round the Warwickshire Ring. From our Stockton base on the Grand Union Canal in Warwickshire, the 101-mile, 94-lock Warwickshire Ring takes narrowboat holiday-makers on a wonderful tour of the West Midlands, cruising for around 53 hours in total. Highlights include the beautiful country town of Warwick with its jaw-dropping medieval castle on the banks of the River Avon. From 22 July to 3 September, Warwick Castle is holding its ‘Wars of The Roses Live’ event, a new heart pumping, fist thumping, live action show!
Cruise to Devizes for some real ale and cheesecake. From our base on the Kennet & Avon Canal at Sydney Wharf in Bath, boaters can reach Fox Hanger Wharf at the base of the awesome flight of locks at Caen Hill, in 10 hours, travelling through eight locks. Once here, the historic market town of Devizes is a short walk away, where visitors can enjoy the Wadworth Brewery Visitor Centre with its famous shire horses making daily deliveries, and sample delicious food at some of the town’s independent shops and restaurants, including seasonal favourites at the AA 5* ‘Peppermill Restaurant’ and the Devizes Cheesecake at the ‘Dolcipani Bakery’.
To book a holiday or break on any of Anglo Welsh’s fleet, call our friendly booking team on 0117 304 1122.
Celebrate Shakespeare and the start of summer at Stratford’s 2017 River Festival
Few towns are more quintessentially English than Stratford-upon-Avon, and there is no better way to celebrate Shakespeare than the annual River Festival in the Bard of Avon’s home town.
Stratford’s 2017 River Festival takes place on Saturday July 1st and Sunday July 2nd, the eighth edition of an event that is close to everybody’s canal-loving heart at Anglo Welsh. For two whole days every summer the riverside comes alive and this year’s festival promises more free events and fun activities than ever.
Last year more than 60,000 people enjoyed world-class entertainment at this award-winning festival on Stratford’s riverside. In the best tradition of English festivities there really is something for everyone, including live music on the Bandstand and Acoustic Stage, fun activities in the Family Zone, artisan craft markets and a mouth-watering selection of food and drink on global food stands.
As befits one of Britain’s biggest canal festivals there will also be a spectacular display of narrowboats, not least Anglo Welsh’s 67ft, 6-berth ‘Summer’, a high spec Bond Class boat that by popular consensus is among the finest narrowboat hires available anywhere on the UK’s waterways.
‘Summer’ will arrive at Stratford-upon-Avon after a leisurely short cruise from Anglo Welsh’s nearby base at Wootton Wawen, Henley-In-Arden, a popular starting point for narrowboat holidays on the Avon Ring, the Warwickshire Ring, Stratford Canal and the Grand Union Canal, among others.
Aside from narrowboats and natural beauty, the highlight of a fabulous two-day River Festival will be a spectacular firework display on the Saturday night. We can’t wait!
And as an extra incentive we will be offering a 20% discount for Anglo Welsh customers who book their Anglo Welsh holiday at the festival!
To book a canal holiday from Wootton Wawen or any of Anglo Welsh’s 11 bases at prime waterway locations, please call our friendly booking team on 0117 304 1122.
Terms and conditions apply. Only available on Anglo Welsh boats, excluding Silsden boats.
Anglo Welsh men make a splash in 24 hour charity boat race
Steve Harrison, manager at Anglo Welsh’s Bunbury base on the Shropshire Union Canal, is one of those narrowboat enthusiasts who cheerily spends as much time on the water as on dry land.
On a rare day-off from his Bunbury ‘office’ in rural Cheshire, Steve swapped narrowboats for yachts and dinghies as an Anglo Welsh sponsored team took part in West Lancashire Yacht club’s 50th annual race for charity.
With their Enterprise dinghy decked out in Anglo Welsh colours, Steve and his teammates from Chester Sailing and Canoe club performed gallantly at the charity event staged at Southport Marine Lake.
“It’s a 24 hour race so everybody calls it Le Mans on water,” jokes Steve. “Our veterans won the Masters Trophy for the over-40s and our team finished seventh overall, which was pretty good going considering that our sensor gear snapped at the beginning of the race, which meant some time-consuming jury rigging.”
“A brilliant weekend was had by all,” continues Steve, who was joined on the Anglo Welsh sponsored team by his father, Bunbury colleague Dave, “and luckily, many of the skills used on a narrowboat – working in close quarters, judging distances, adapting to water conditions – are equally relevant on a yacht or canoe.”
“Best of all, Anglo Welsh’s generous sponsorship helped us raise money for the Andrew Simpson Foundation, a charity that is close to the hearts of all sailors.”
Inspired by the memory of Olympic Gold medallist Andrew ‘Bart’ Simpson, the foundation gives thousands of young people the chance to enjoy the life-changing challenges of sailing. “My family have always had boats and I’ve been navigating on canals for 15 years,” says Steve, who has been based at Bunbury since January 2015, “so I know from personal experience what a liberating and enjoyable experience being on the water is, whatever the vessel!”
Anglo Welsh has a large fleet of narrowboats at its Bunbury base, next to the famous Bunbury Staircase Locks. To book a canal holiday from Bunbury or any of Anglo Welsh’s 11 bases, please call our Booking Office on 0117 304 1122.
Anglo Welsh’s Top 7 canal boat holidays for beginners
Every year more and more people are discovering the delights of holidaying on Britain’s beautiful inland waterways network.
You don’t have to be an expert and you don’t need a licence to steer a canal boat. It’s easy for first-timers to learn to operate our boats and as part of our holiday package, we provide hirers with expert boat steering tuition.
With our nationally accredited handover, we’ll make sure you’re comfortable and in control before you set off. There is a manual on board every boat if you need to check on anything and our engineering teams are always on hand – 24 hours a day- to help over the phone or come out to you if you need them.
So if you’ve thought about taking a canal boat holiday, but you’re not sure where to begin, here’s our top seven short break narrowboat holidays for newcomers to get you started:
Head to Birmingham lock-free – with no locks between our base at Tardebigge and Birmingham City Centre, this five-hour cruise is perfect for first-time canal boat holiday-makers. The first half of the journey passes through fields, woodlands and sleepy villages before the route becomes more urbanised. Once in the centre of Birmingham, narrowboat holiday-makers can find over-night moorings at Gas Street Basin, with easy access to Brindley Place, the Mailbox and Bullring shopping centres, theatres, museums and restaurants.
Learn the ropes on the Llangollen – passing through stunning North Wales landscapes, the Llangollen Canal is one of the most popular on the network. With just two locks along the way, the seven-hour journey from our base at Trevor to Ellesmere and back offers a fantastic short break holiday for beginners. And the route includes the experience of travelling across the incredible World Heritage status Pontcysyllte Aqueduct, with jaw-dropping panoramic views of the Dee Valley below.
Dip your toe in the water at Bath – from our base at Bradford on Avon on the Kennet & Avon Canal in Wiltshire, Bath Top Lock is a lovely six-hour, one-lock cruise away. Skirting the southern foothills of the Cotswolds, the route passes over two stunning Bath stone aqueducts and past a series of popular canalside pubs, including the George at Bathampton. From Bath Top Lock, canal boat holiday makers can walk into the centre of Bath in just 15 minutes to enjoy all that the World Heritage Status City of Bath has to offer, such as the Roman Baths, Royal Crescent, Bath Abbey and an excellent range of independent shops and restaurants.
Take to the tiller along the Thames – from our base on the River Thames at Eynsham near Witney, it takes just 3½ hours, passing through four locks to reach City centre moorings in Oxford. All the locks are manned along the Thames so there’s help on hand for newcomers. Once in Oxford, boaters can use their vessel as a base to explore all that this fascinating city has to offer, including the University of Oxford’s Bodleian Library, the Carfax Tower and pubs like the Lamb & Flag, steeped in literary and film history.
Steer gently along to Stone – from our base at Great Haywood it takes just five hours of gentle cruising along the Trent & Mersey Canal to reach the historic Shropshire market town of Stone. There are just four locks to pass through and plenty of pubs to take refreshment at along the way, including the ‘Woolpack’ and ‘Saracen’s Head’ at Weston, the ‘Holly Bush Inn’ at Salt, the ‘Dog & Doublet’ at Sandon and the ‘Greyhound’ at Burston.
Chug up the Shroppie to historic Chester – it’s a seven-hour, nine-lock journey to Chester from our Bunbury base on the Shropshire Union Canal. The route passes through glorious English countryside and villages with historic local pubs, including the ‘Ring O’Bells’ at Christleton and the ‘Shady Oak’ at Bates Mill Bridge. Once in Chester, canal boat holiday-makers can explore this wonderfully cosmopolitan ancient City, including its Roman Amphitheatre, city walls, Chester’s Rows shops, 1,000-year old cathedral, racecourse and zoo.
Test the waters on the Leeds & Liverpool – from our Silsden base on the Leeds & Liverpool Canal in West Yorkshire, it’s a great short break route for beginners to travel west to Gargrave and back. Travelling 12 miles through just three locks, the journey takes around 6½ hours and passes through the historic town of Skipton, with its fascinating medieval castle, one of the most complete and best preserved in England.
To make a booking or to get friendly advice on canal holidays, please call our Booking Office on 0117 304 1122.
We offer a range of different types of holidays such as City Breaks, Relaxation Cruises and Popular Destinations
So why choose Anglo Welsh?
More than 55 years providing unique canal boat holidays.
Modern & spacious narrowboat holiday fleet – from 2 to 12 berths.
Wide choice of narrowboat hire locations and canal.
Canal boat holiday routes for novices & experienced boaters.
Flexible holiday booking, no hidden costs.
Family friendly holidays, pets also welcome.