New Website & 2016 Schedule

New website up and running, please look at the new format 2016 schedule, hope you like it. For 2016 we are doing a string of cruises that go the length of the Leeds Liverpool and coast to coast. This is to celebrate the 200 anniversary of the opening of the Leeds Liverpool along its full length, the longest most amazingly  scenic canal on the system.

Season Over

Apologies to those of you who read this news page, we have been doing more on Facebook and Twitter but will try next season to do a bit more with this as well.

Boat will be blacked this winter and a few other odds and ends for you to spot next year!

Cygnets and ducklings

Lots of babies around all of a sudden! We have seen some gorgeous sights including a flock of over 70 geese and goslings. Cygnets taking a ride on mums back and little orphan ducklings desperately trying to find mum.  Nick has to stop me adopting them.  It has been suggested we have a creche on top for any orphans we gather up!

Four in a Bed

We are sure that some of you will have been following us on Four in a Bed. An interesting experience, great fun. Can’t give anything away though you need to watch to see who wins. But it was a great thing to do that we thoroughly enjoyed.

Late Cancellations

We have had two late cancellations and are offering the cruises at a 10% discount, 2-6 June Skipton to Reedley, a lovely cruise through the dales and Reedley to Leeds 17-24 August, this cruise passes through the Dales, the iconic Bingley 5 Rise and the Unesco world heritage site of Saltaire finishing in the great city of Leeds.

Boat Painting

Earlier than we expected we are having to have the boat painted. We anticipated the paintwork to have survived longer than it has but it is all dependent on prep and finish.

She is in now being stripped back for a load of undercoats, top coats and new signwriting. We are keeping the colour scheme and sign work the same so no big change just a lot shinier!

Will post some photos once she is done.

End of the Season

Well I have been as bad as ever at updating the blog, I really promise to do better next year!

The season has finished now and we had a great time, we think the guests did as well, they said they had.

The weather was superb from the bright crisp days early on to the amazing summer days.

We would like to thank all our guests for their custom and company, many of whom we will see again next year and the year after.

The Calder & Hebble

Great run down the river to Selby. The Ouse really is quite a river! I do like the Selby canal with its strange large drains. A lovely quiet scenic canal experience.

Then it was a run across to Wakefield with the run along the meandering Aire before the big river locks and off up the Calder and Hebble, it is so fabulous up here and we have had great weather with everyone out on the roof.

Leeds and Aire and Calder

Another great run into Leeds, it really is a green corridor entry to the City, then a trundle through Leeds centre and night in Clarence dock.

We are now out on the river, Thwaites mills moors doing really well, well done Howard and Leeds council for getting these moorings up and running.
Moored up at Lemonroyd  Lock opposite an interesting barge that generates electricity from the river flow, what a superb idea, Oblin Ark

At last babies!

As well as me becoming a Grandad for the first time, making me feel really old, we are starting to see the ducklings and cygnets at last, all a bit late like everything this year. Had stunning weather and the ever present fabulous scenery. What a life!

The Season is going well

We have our first few cruises under our belt and the glorious Leeds and Liverpool continues to deliver. Our first run down the Bingley 5 Rise and the other amazing staircase locks and of course the tunnel. It is such a pleasure working a canal that is both stunning and not too busy, no queues for locks and water points! The views across the dales continue to amaze me and it is so great to be back amongst them, there really is nowhere like it. We have been sitting on top, hard to believe I know but we have had some cracking days.

We are starting to see ducklings and goslings and the swans are sitting on huge clutches of eggs, spring does seem to be on its way.

And we are off!

Well started our season yesterday, lovely and bright not too windy, but we did have to break through some ice! Lock gates covered in icicles and some amazing ones hanging down in the Foulridge tunnel.

Another fab bright day today but once again ice on the water, all cosy aboard though!

Season about to Start

Having redecorated  revarnished,remodeled ………. we are getting ready to greet guests next week.

Gina is doing really well, many thanks for all your good wishes. Lady has been groomed, as have I.

The crane has been removed from the canal near Apperley Bridge and work in Burnley appears to be progressing well. We are looking forward to all the new gates and longer operating hours of the manned flights, well done CRT.

All we need now is the weather!


We seem to have been lucky with the weather, sure we have had a few days of rain but we seem to have missed out on the worst of it. But this morning the sun is starting to break through and it promises to be a stunning day. We will be going down the lovely flight of locks at Bank Newton and then through the pretty dales village of Gargrave before passing along the stunning Aire Valley, another amazing day on the glorious Leeds Liverpool. We are moored next to a couple who have spent 37 years on the waterways and have spent the last 16 solely on the Leeds Liverpool as they think it so lovely.

Back on the Canals

We are now back cruising the canals and have just left lovely Skipton via the great Aire valley and the super flight at Bank Newton. Huge downpours in the night and we look across to the river coming up again. Though the news says that the jet stream is moving so we should get more settled summery weather now.

River cruising is great with water under the boat and lots to see, but the canal feels our more natural environment, albeit a lot slower than the river.

We are now served by the charity workers of the Canal and River Trust, as one of our guests pointed out I wonder which Canal and which River as it is in the singular. I suspect the impact of this change will take a few years to be felt and in general we are  supportive of it. The thing that needs to change is the management culture of the CRT. It is too closed and does not communicate why some things are being done. There appears to be a big drop in keeper numbers and an increase in the number of locks they need to cover, why is this, it appears a bad thing but what is the rationale, it may be a very good thing we just don’t know?


River cruising is great fun and a different but equally enjoyable experience as canal cruising.  The only thing is that with this weather they are up and down like yoyos so you have to make sure you get to the right place when you can.

Though it is interesting that we wont go onto a river when the board is red but the conditions are a lot more straight forward than the tidal run up to York.

On a different note one of our guests spotted a kingfisher today, we seem to have seen a lot of them this year.


Before I cover the subject of rain I would like to apologise to those of you who follow our news. I am constantly surprised, and cheered, that my ramblings can be of interest and a few people have pointed out how bad I am at updating the news. I promise to update it more regularly in future.

There has been a lot of rain around up here, but till today we have largely missed it. It has swirled around us, where we are going or where we have been but not upon us.

We have had numerous days with people out on the top deck with drinks looking at the wonderful scenery, but today it caught up with us! It is a changeover day today so we planned to be holed up and as the heavens have opened we are all sitting warm and cosy listening to and looking out at the rain. The flood locks on the river have been closed, we made sure we are up on a long stretch of navigation so will be able to cruise tomorrow. I know we needed water but it is getting a bit crazy now, certainly the reservoirs should be full.


Before I cover the subject of rain I would like to apologise to those of you who follow our news. I am constantly surprised, and cheered, that my ramblings can be of interest and a few people have pointed out how bad I am at updating the news. I promise to update it more regularly in future.

There has been a lot of rain around up here, but till today we have largely missed it. It has swirled around us, where we are going or where we have been but not upon us.

We have had numerous days with people out on the top deck with drinks looking at the wonderful scenery, but today it caught up with us! It is a changeover day today so we planned to be holed up and as the heavens have opened we are all sitting warm and cosy listening to and looking out at the rain. The flood locks on the river have been closed, we made sure we are up on a long stretch of navigation so will be able to cruise tomorrow. I know we needed water but it is getting a bit crazy now, certainly the reservoirs should be full.

5 Star – Visit England says so!

We are really pleased that following our recent accreditation visit we have again been confirmed as offering an independently rated 5 Star experience. It is very important to us that not only do we, and our guests, believe we are providing a 5 Star experience but that an independent, knowledgeable assessor confirms it to be the case.

Wigan Flight

It was over thirty years ago that I last made my way through the Wigan flight, but we have done it again today. Wow, what a difference 30 years makes. It is now well turned out, rubbish free and nearly all the gear works. I know there are issues with vandals and boaters emptying bits or all of the flight down but today there was plenty of water and we completed our run down to the Leigh Branch in 3 hours 50 minutes, even with some hold ups, so not bad. As you can gather I am quite impressed with it and it is a welcome addition to our routes.

Down toward the Manchester ship canal now and a passage over the top of it.

More new ground

Continuing our foray into pastures new we have come down Johnsons Hillock locks and are now heading through Chorley toward the gruelling Wigan flight. Johnssons Hillock are interesting because they were built by the Douglas Canal company and do have a different feel to the flights up the Yorkshire end. Also there is the now disused link to the Lancaster summit at the bottom of the flight. All in all and interesting and very pretty run through from Burnley. I think everyone thinks of this as an ugly industrial area and they are so wrong. The views are stunning and the trip is a really good one.

Horse Drawn Boat

We have recently passed the horse drawn boat Elland as it makes it’s way along the Leeds and Liverpool, probably the first horse drawn boat along the length for over 60 years. More about Elland. It is lovely to see the guys in traditional garb and most amazingly they legged it through the Foulridge tunnel. Unladen L&L short boats used to take about and hour to go through, so they did really well to leg a narrow through in 38 minutes, well done guys!

Do have a look at the Horse Boating Society web site , and maybe even give them a helping hand!

Exciting Rescue

Today Gina executed a quick thinking rescue of 10 ducklings. Whilst the guests looked on the tension mounted, 10 one day old ducklings got separated from their mother in the lock, well she abandoned them and spent her time quacking outside the lock as they squeaked inside it. Gina got a net and scooped up all 10 of them and returned them to their mother to cheers of relief from the guests. Never a dull moment on Lady Teal!

New Territory

We are part way through the return half of a cruise into new territory for us, down toward Chorley and it is lovely. The scenery is fab and Johnsons Hillock locks are a superb flight. We wonder why we have not come this way before as it is so good. Even, very unexpectedly, the locks through Blackburn are fun with their different gear. Some are so near bridges they cannot have balance beams so have chains and winding mechanisms instead.

So a very pleasant addition to our routes and one to be retraced when we head down toward the Bridgewater in a couple of weeks.

Just Cruising

I never cease to wonder at the change in our lives that occurred when we set up Lady Teal. Cruising along through amazing countryside with great guests sure beats what we used to do. Yesterday we moved off from a lovely spot looking out over the Aire valley and after a stop in the great village of Gargrave went up one of my favourite flight of locks at Bank Newton. They curve up through the trees and are just spectacular. A few more hire boats around now and it is great to see the people enjoying themselves.

Then a stop for the night on “the curly wurlies” a piece of the canal that meanders above the most incredible views of the dales, with Curlew, Oyster catchers, nesting swans and, of course, plenty of sheep, pure magic.

Another wildlife day!

What a day for wildlife, deer, a Tern, cygnets, goslings and then mink catching a huge fish! Never a dull moment on this canal.

People never cease to amaze, in a good way

We have just had Andy Reid and his wife stay with us for a few days. Andy Reid has served for 13 years with 3rd Battalion The Yorkshire Regiment. He is in rehabilitation after the severe injuries he received by an IED while serving in Afghanistan In October 2009. As a result of the explosion he lost both legs and his right arm.

Andy has the most positive outlook on life of anyone we have ever met. The way he lives his life to the full is inspirational, and his lovely wife Claire shares the same “lets do it” attitude. When you meet people with this kind of outlook it makes you realise just how negative we can be over such minor things.

Andy does inspirational talks to companies and  if I was still in the corporate world I would have him talk tomorrow. Please see his site and support ABF The Soldiers Charity

River and Water

Well plenty of water around up here. Our reservoirs are at 87.8% which is good for the time of year and in the last few days the river has been up in flood but is drifting back down. Lets hope the water situation improves for the southern network.

We saw a Kingfisher the other day, quite remarkable as it just sat in a tree within 10 feet of us, really lovely.

Another Day

Another day cruising and saw a Stork! Not what you expect in Yorkshire but today was a day for firsts with a tufted Duck and then incredibly a Stork, looked really big and we were all impressed with it.

Wow! What a week

We thought The Dales show was fabulous. Clearly so did a lot of other people as it brought our website to it’s knees. Apologise to all who had trouble getting to the information. We had around 5000 hits within a couple of hours. It has been a great week with many bookings for this year and next and a lot of enquiries.

We hope that there has been some knock on effect to hire fleets on the glorious Leeds Liverpool and for other hotel boats.

ITV-1 The Dales with Adrian Edmodnson

The Dales – Series Starts 27 Feb Lady Teal Features March 26 8pm
Lady Teal, Lady, Gina and I will be featured on The Dales on 26 March at 8pm! Scary thing is we have not yet seen it so it will be interesting how it is put together. Though we had the Premier of the series in Skipton this week, red carpet and champagne, really was a premier, and saw the first two episodes, it looked great so please do watch, only Eastenders on the other side anyway!

Let us know what you think of it when you see it.

Bingley 5 Rise

Had a wonderful day down at the Bingley 5 Rise today. They are replacing a number of gates so have it all drained down, an amazing sight. They have open days on the 28th and 29th of January, well worth going along. this link will take you to a Yorkshire Post video on itBingley 5. There is also a good piece on the ITV site Bingley 5.

A few photos

Here are a couple of photos of our wedding, thank you so much to everyone who thought of us.

Signing the RegisterMinstrel Court

We are married

This is our first day as a married couple! The weather was really kind us and we were married outside in the gazebo, which was so great. Minstrel Court treated us listening to what we wanted and making sure it happened. We also had a great live singer from Liverpool sing swing and motown stuff. It was a lovely lovely day and seeing the rain today we were so luck with the weather.

Thanks to everyone who thought of us.

Wedding Day

Well the day has dawned and it looks like the weather will be kind to us so we will be getting married outdoors, which will be great.

We have had a lovely breakfast, courtesy of Ginas son and girlfriend. Dogs have been groomed, bows in hair and diamanté collars are on. Clothes are laid out ready so best get off and get ready.

Thanks to all who have sent their best wishes to us, we will post pictures!

Wedding plans

Less than a week to go now till our wedding. Gina has been and had her hair cut and Lady has too. Lady had a great cut at K9Cuts in Bingley. Lady loves going there and  they do such a lovely cut, she even had pink bows added into her hair.

British Waterways Change

Well BW’s new guise, the Canal and River Trust, is starting to surface. I have to say the new logo is an inspired piece of work, well done John Rushworth,  we love it.


Season Over

Well a big thank you to the weather gods and all the wonderful guests we have had this year. At times we were enjoying ourselves so much we almost thought we were on holiday as well. A big thank you to all our guests who have made this year a great one for us and we look forward to next season which is rapidly moving toward being two thirds booked.

As we move into preparing the boat for next season, with maintenance items and decorating to do, Lady Teal seems strangely quiet. We live aboard full time so it seems odd to have Lady Teal to ourselves, I find myself wanting to ask Gina if she would like another drink, or home made cookie.

But of course our big preparations now are for our special day in November, when we are getting married, so much to do and so little time. But as I am sure you can believe Gina’s organisational skills will make sure it will all go brilliantly.

Thank you to everyone who have sent their best wishes and cards to our Suffolk address. As promised we will post pictures of us in our finery.

U Boat spotted

Must be one of the most weird sights on the canal but today we saw U-8041, a replica u-boat. We will post some pictures soon but look at their  web site . It is all kitted out as a u-boat inside and we had a look around. Fabulous thing and really interesting insight to what it must have been like to be in a u-boat. It is based at Thwaites Mill near leeds right now so if you get a chance go take a look.

Lady Teal to be a TV star

A new series of the Dales with Adrian Edmonson has been commissioned and Lady Teal, Gina, Lady and Nick are to be in it. The crew have been aboard filming and there are some great views and what promises to be a fun story line. We will post when we know it is to be broadcast so you can all watch it.

Thanks to the guests that were on board at the time.

The Tidal Ouse

Well it has been an interesting few days with our first foray up to York. This involves a transit of the tidal Ouse. Joining at Selby from the Selby Canal we entered at right angles into the incoming tide. You exit the lock and go straight out and are grabbed by the incoming tide, maybe 5 or 6 mph and your off! Never moved so fast against the ground, no need to turn the current does that for you. The technique for getting around the bends is quite entertaining because as soon as you start to turn the current takes control. A little bit of technique goes a long way and avoids brushes with trees!

Talking of trees the tidal piece has huge amounts of what is known as natural rubbish floating up and down in the tide and not leaving till a winter flood carries it out to sea. Whole trees and some huge branches make  up islands of debris, not so bad in a large steel hull but must be a bit scary in a composite boat.

As you near Naburn the tide slackens off and it is a gentle entry into the lock and then a nice run up the river to the centre of York. Nice friendly moorings, we shared with the Stickleback cafe.

Then it’s thinking  of the return journey which does sound a bit scary, having to enter a lock at right angles to the outgoing tide!  I have to say one of the key things is to listen to the lock keepers. Both Naburn and Selby are keeper only and they let you out when the tide is right for both exit and entry.

You leave Naburn with the tide against you so that you will arrive with the tide going out, but hopefully not too strong. Well we slogged against the tide barely making one and a half miles an hour for the first hour. Then the tide started to turn and we are off again. The swing bridges, huge operated ones not like the canals, are high enough so we don’t need to have them swung for us but we do have to make our way through the arches.

Then it is the final approach to Selby lock. Through the last bridge and then turn so that you are facing into the current then drift back with it past the lock and gently turn into the dead water at the face of the lock and gently into the lock. An exciting manoeuvre and I am pleased to say we entered cleanly into the lock without even a graze along the wall, the keeper was impressed, so was I!

A great trip, something really different to do, a trip down a little travelled  Selby canal with it’s interesting features, a fabulous transit of tidal waters and lovely York. This really is a great addition to our schedule and truly something different to do on a canal boat.

One thing I almost forgot was that coming around one bend in the river I was greeted by a high speed motor boat and a water skiier! No that is something I am definitely not used to having to avoid on the canals.

All the Cygnets are appearing

We have just left Skipton behind, wow it was busy last week with the festival. We are now on our way to Barnoldswick before turning to head back down toward Bingley Saltaire and Apperley Bridge.

As we passed through Skipton we saw the swan we have been watching has now had six cygnets, yes Gina they are cute fluffy things. Also huge numbers of ducklings, and of course lots of lambs in the fields, spring is here.

We had an impromptu stop at Snaygill Boats new wide beam dry dock to fit a new prop, still not figured out what we hit to do so much damage to the old one, but we have a nice new shiny Axiom one now.

Kennet and the LLCS

Whilst at Skipton we had a chance to look over the fabulous Kennet, a 1947 Leeds Liverpool shortboat. Check out the LLCS site and Kennet and help support this great project. LLCS and Kennet web site

Leeds Kitchen Opens

We were very lucky to get to the opening night of James Martins Leeds Kitchen in Clarence Dock Leeds.  A great addition to Clarence dock and a good night. Certainly will point our guests in his direction.

New Storage Box

We have new storage box for the roof courtesy of Heritage Sheds in Nelson. We will post a photo shortly but we are really pleased with it. They listened to what we wanted and did it at a good price, and on top of that they are such lovely people, a pleasure to buy something from. Be so good to store some more stuff away from inside the boat.

More Press!

A centre page spread in the Craven Herald. Some great pictures. We hope to be able to get some of them to put them on the web site.


Hot on the heals of all the other coverage we have appeared twice on television recently, BBC Look North

Radio Leeds

onboard today and hopefully got the TV coming aboard tomorrow, all go!

Outdoor Show

Much activity at the Outdoor show. Lots of great people and the boat show is there too and that is amazing. Ben Fogle selling a great range of socks and walking shoes opposite us.

Daily Mail aboard

We had an interesting evening meal cruise with the Daily Mail on board, looking forward to the article coming out.


“It’s about time”, lots of people keep saying when I tell them. Gina and I are engaged and are planning to get married at the end of next years season, trying to keep Gina concentrated on planning for next season, not just the wedding!

2011 Routes Published

We are pleased to announce our 2011 routes. We have some interesting additions this year with river trips up to York as well as this years favourites through the dales and the amazing Bingley 5 rise of locks and Foulridge tunnel.

Yorkshire Post

We had a brilliant visit from the Yorkshire post and are very pleased with the lovely article they did on us, 4 page spread that was a surprise.

Coming soon 2011 routes!

We will soon be posting our 2011 schedule, book early to get the route you would like and to get an earlybird incentive!!

Leeds & Liverpool Canal Closure – Western Section

Due to severe water shortages the western section of the canal, from Wigan to Gargrave is to be closed from the 2nd of August.

This is a huge dissapointment to us but we still have the wonderful eastern end of the canal to operate on. That is Skipton, Saltaire, The Bingley 5 and 3 and Leeds itself. A quick re-jig of our routes and we will press on. An interesting first season.

What would life be without a few challenges thrown in.

No change to the great boat and Gina’s superb food, and the drink will not dry up!

Nick & Gina

Lady Teal now in Operation

Lady Teal has now run a number of cruises and we are pleased to say that all our guests have been very positive about the experience. It is always a worry starting something new so to have such positive feedback has been great for us.

We are really looking forward to our summer on the L&L it is such a great canal

Nick & Gina

Lady Teal successfully launched and is now in the water

June 5th at around 8 in the morning Lady Teal took to the water for the first time at Reedley Marina Pendle.

It was lovely to see her settle down into her natural environment.

To see the launch on YouTube go to

July 2– We have now undertaken some trial cruises and she goes through all the bridges and the Foulridge tunnel, never doubted she would!

All the trial guests seem to think she is great and that Gina’s cooking is outstanding!