Community News From Around Our Area

The Hargreaves Narrowboat Trust

The Hargreaves Narrowboat Trust is an all-volunteer registered charity (No 1037467), founded over 25 years ago which aims “to improve the quality of life for people, who by virtue of age, infirmity, physical disability, mental disorder or social factors, are disadvantaged or deprived”, and to provide them with an experience outside of their normal environment. The trustees and crew are all unpaid and give their time to support this important community service.

Based in Nuneaton, we achieve this by providing full day trips for up to 12 passengers, 7 days a week from April to October each year, on a wheelchair friendly 70-foot narrowboat. The boat has excellent access via external ramps either side, as well as a further ramp to the interior, making it most suitable for wheelchair and limited mobility people.

We have, until present, been entirely funded by voluntary donations, without any grants or funding. Demand for our service has always outstripped availability and in 2019 we completed over 200 trips, carrying 2000+ passengers. To date, the boat is 99% booked, 7 days a week. The Trust has 30 volunteers with all captains trained to RYA standards.

We wish to commission a new custom built, reliable and maintainable, all electric narrowboat, having zero emissions of CO2 and pollutants to the local atmosphere and meeting the latest standards of disability access and facilities. Given the existing narrowboat’s history, usage and build quality, a new-build narrowboat rather than total refurbishment, is the only practical and economical option.

This is a single capital expenditure project with an estimated spend of £150k to £160k. The Trust has accumulated funds from trip donations over the past 25 years, with the objective of commissioning a replacement custom-built narrowboat in the near future. Whilst the Trust has managed to accumulate almost half of the cost, we are struggling to find the balance of the anticipated project spend.

If you can assist, we would be very happy to discuss or provide any further details.

You may contact The Hargreaves Narrowboat Trust on 024 7637 4674 or email mike@hargreavesnarrowboat.co.uk.