Carbon Monoxide – the silent killer.

Carbon Monoxide – the silent killer.

The boat safety Scheme has reported that over the last 20 years over 24 boaters have died from Carbon Monoxide poisoning. Over a third of these deaths were linked to solid fuel burners.

With Winter well on its way we thought this was a good time to give some tips on keeping you safe from these fumes.

Firstly look for danger signs on your boat:

Routine checking that your boat’s fuel-burning appliances and engines are free from signs of problems and in good condition will help keep you safe.
Any of the following could be signs that CO is filling your boat:
• Staining, sooty smears, or discolouration on surfaces around an appliance or its flue
• Appliances that are difficult to light, keep lit or burn weakly
• Burners with yellow or orange or ‘floppy’ flames that threaten to go out
If there’s a CO problem on your boat – get a properly qualified person to find and fix the appliance or engine
before it is used again.
• An unfamiliar or burning smell when an LPG or oil appliance is on
• Smelling or seeing smoke escaping regularly into the cabin when running your wood-burner or coal stove Flue gases from solid fuel stoves can have up to 100 times the concentrations of CO found in gas hob-burners with problems.
• Smelling engine exhaust fumes regularly inside the cockpit or cabin. If those are petrol engine fumes anyone in the cabin could be in immediate danger.

Secondly you should know the symptoms of Carbon Monoxide poisoning
Common symptoms include:

• Headache and bad temper
• Feeling sick and dizzy
• Feeling tired and confused
• Stomach pains and being sick

For more information visit the NHS website http://www.nhs.uk/conditions/carbon-monoxidepoisoning
The greater the amount of CO there is in air, or the longer you are breathing in CO, the worse your symptoms may get.

Call in to the Trinity Marinas shop and get your Carbon Monoxide detector today. 

You can download the full information leaflet here:

https://www.boatsafetyscheme.org/media/293205/carbon-monoxide-safety-on-boats-final-dec2016.pdf

Information from https://www.boatsafetyscheme.org, http://cogdem.org.uk/newsite/?page=cohome

 

Buyers Tips #4

Buyers Tips #4

  1. Engine:
    An obvious consideration is the choice of engine, whereby there are three categories, such as –
    a) Air cooled (eg. Lister ST2)
    b) Water cooled (eg. BMC 1.5)
    c) Vintage engine (eg Russell Newbury)
    The type of engine to choose depends on a number of factors, including mechanical knowledge, spare time and size of boat. If you are looking for simplicity, then consider one of the modern water-cooled diesel engines or the older and slightly louder air cooled diesel engine. Both of these offer ease of use and reliability. The Vintage engine will suit the enthusiast, who likes to tinker with the engine; it is also only suitable for larger boats (40ft +) due to the size of the engine.

 

Buyers Tip #3

Buyers Tip #3

#3 Steel plate:

Steel plate figures you will see will be for example 10/6/4 and relate to 10mm bottom plate, 6mm hull sides and 4mm cabin.
Nowadays standard specification is 10/6/4 but steel thickness of 8/6/4mm and 6/5/3mm – if well looked after – will provide you with many years of service, so they should not be ruled out.
Wood and GRP (glass reinforce plastic) are also used on boats, mainly for the cabin. These are more commonly seen on older boats and are not as desirable as all steel, but provide a cheaper option.

Buyers tips #2

Buyers tips #2

#2 Length of the boat:

The length of boat you require obviously depends on the number of people who will be using the boat and the period of time that you will spend on it. Basically 30 – 40 feet is ample for a holiday boat, while 50 feet plus is ideal for extended cruising or live aboard.

A further point with regard to length is lock dimensions. There are a number of locks around the country, that restrict access to certain waterways, the lengths are as follows:

Leeds & Liverpool    60 feet (62 feet can just fit through)
Calder & Hebble      57 feet 6 inch

 

Winter Closures

Winter Closures

If you’re thinking of heading out for a cruise this winter then be aware that this is the time of year when the canals are maintained. You may find closures on some routes.

I’ve listed two local closures here on the Coventry Canal but for more information you can click here

The Canal and River Trust list all closures both canal and towpath so you’ll need to check your route before you cruise. Don’t forget that here at Trinity Marinas we have over 40 miles of lock free cruising so uninterrupted cruising during the winter months!

Waterway: Coventry Canal
From Date: 6th November 2017 at 08:00
To Date: 15th December 2017 at 16:00 inclusive

 

Waterway: Coventry Canal
From Date: 6th November 2017 at 08:00
To Date: 17th November 2017 at 16:00 inclusive
Buyers tips #1

Buyers tips #1

#1 Choose your preferred style of boat or “Stern”

There are three different styles of narrow boats, such as –

 

TRAD     –       Ideal for live aboard, typical by a short back deck of 2-3 feet in length,
giving more room inside for living.

CRUISER   –   An ideal holiday boat, a back deck of between 4-8 feel in length,
providing ample space on the back for several people to stand and socialise.

SEMI-TRAD  –   A good compromise between the above two. The looks of a Trad with
the space of a cruiser.

Trad
Cruiser
Semi Trad
Birminghams German Christmas market

Birminghams German Christmas market

It’s that time of year when the leaves start to fall off the trees and the weather starts to turn frosty and yes, we start to think of Christmas.

There is a lot going on in the lead ups to Christmas but one of the most famous in the Midlands is the German Christmas Market in BIrmingham. Why not visit? We can offer casual moorings here at Trinity Marinas for only £10 per night! Once booked in you are within easy reach of the market either by train or coach!

There’s live music to enjoy on Victoria Square or pick up some gifts such as handcrafted wooden decorations, leatherwork, toys, jewellery and much more!

The market is open from 10am – 9pm from 16th November  to 24th December. You have plenty of time to see the 180 stalls.

 

Getting there…

By Train…

You can easily get to the market via train. Hinckley train station is only a 5 minute bus ride away from the Marina. The trains run at 37 minutes past the hour, every hour. It takes approximately 35 minutes to get into Birmingham.  Off peak return tickets are £12.70.

You an also get a bus (the number 48) to Nuneaton Station and the trains run 43 minutes past the hour and 9 minutes past the hour.  Anytime daytime return ticket would cost £10.80.

 

For more information visit  https://www.germanchristmasmarketbirmingham.com/

 

 

 

 

Popular Short Break Routes

Popular Short Break Routes

A lovely weekend trip is to cruise the Ashby Canal. With over 40 miles of lock free canal you’ll cruise through some beautiful villages. Through Stoke Golding you’ll come to the lovely village of Dadlington. Stop for a break or a meal at the ever popular Dog & Hedgehog pub or carry on cruising for a further hour until you get to Sutton Cheney. Here you’ll find a canal side cafe and a walk up to the Bosworth Battlefield Centre. There’s also a turning point at Sutton Cheney.

At Shenton you will find the steam train and its authentic station along with a glass blowing museum.

2.5 hours later you will find the market town of Market Bosworth. In the Market Square you’ll find a pub, tea shops and there’s even a chocolate shop along with various restaurants including Bosworth Hall. 

Congerstone is 3 hours from Stoke Golding where you’ll find the Horse & Jockey Pub only 800 yards from the canal. Shackerstone village is another turning point and is a further half an hour from Congerstone.  The canals terminus is a further 2 hours cruise up to Snarestone and through the 800 yard tunnel to the final turning point.

If you’re cruising south we have a turning point here at Trinity, Lime kilns pub or the Corner House pub.

If you have time first travel south to Marston Junction. You may wish to cruise south onto the Coventry and North Oxford canals to reach one lock at Hawkesbury Junction. Historic Coventry is only half an hour away. You can visit Coventry Cathedral or the Transport Museum, if you continue south you’ll reach 3 more locks at Hillmorton.

Trinity Marina’s brokerage service

Trinity Marina’s brokerage service

Ahead of our open day event, which is being held this Saturday 11th March, you may wish to know a little bit more about our narrowboat brokerage here at Trinity Marinas.

First and foremost, we help people buy and sell canal boats. You can sell your boat through Trinity Marinas with the confidence that it will be thoughtfully represented by our team, and that it will benefit from prominent display in our marina, which is frequented by a steady stream of potential buyers. Narrowboats for sale in our marina are seen by a varied clientele, including those eating and drinking in neighbouring establishments as well as customers of the marina’s car dealerships. We will also prepare a promotional brochure containing photos of your narrowboat, as well as its features and specifications, which we send out and give to potential buyers.

On top of this we routinely generate sales through a number of means; marketing drives, advertisement on our own and other relevant websites, advertisements in the local paper and trade magazines, as well as through contacting our existing database of buyers. We are able to isolate buyers in our database who may be interested in your boat by using a search function which hones in on their required criteria. Once interest is generated, via any of the above means, we book each potential buyer in for a viewing conducted by one of our team members. Rest assured, people are never allowed to wander around your boat unattended!

We also specialise in advising buyers on the most suitable narrowboat for their needs, whether they want to use the boat as a permanent residence, for the occasional staycation or anything in between. First time buyers especially benefit from this service, as we are able to field questions on everything from moorings, boat insurance, finance options, to licensing and other costs associated with a life on the water.

Whether you are looking to buy or sell a boat, or just want to experience one first-hand, stop by our open day this Saturday 11th March. We’ll be here from 10:30am to 3:30pm, and will be more than happy to advise you on anything narrowboat-related.

Narrowboats an alternative lifestyle, affordable housing or endless weekend and holiday relaxation and adventures?

Narrowboats an alternative lifestyle, affordable housing or endless weekend and holiday relaxation and adventures?

Have you ever dreamed of owning your own narrowboat, meandering at three miles an hour down the beautiful English and Welsh canal system? Basking in the glorious feeling of adventure whilst relaxing in a way that was lost over fifty years ago? Traversing through countryside that cannot be reached by car or train.

Do you imagine an alternative lifestyle living on a narrowboat, amongst a community of other boaters where people help and support each other and a true community spirit thrives?

Perhaps you have considered owning your own narrowboat for use at weekends and for holidays.  Narrowboats and cruising the canal systems certainly provide an escape from the day to day stress of life and help you to unwind away from the entire world as you know it.

People think about narrowboat ownership for a myriad of different reasons.  The only constant is that for whatever reason you decide to buy the reality is, it’s even better than you could ever imagine.

Trinity Marina on Coventry Road Hinckley is holding a Narrowboat Brokerage open day Saturday the 11th of March from 10.30 to 3.30pm where you can drop by the marina and ask our team any question about narrowboat ownership. You will also be able to look around an assortment of boats for sale at the marina and tell us of your boating dreams – who knows you might even walk away having commissioned a new build!

So, join us for a glass of wine and boaty chat, if we can’t answer your questionon the day, we will know someone who can.  We look forward to seeing you to meet the experts and chat with current owners.

Live the dream, your dream, your way.

A Boaters Tale – Part 3

A Boaters Tale – Part 3

Their boat awaits them across the other side of Europe, but now they have to get themselves and their dog Buddy home.

Misty Blue was safely purchased and moored up at Trinity Marinas, awaiting the arrival of her new owners Dave and Liz. Keeping them up to date through every part of the sale, Christine was eagerly awaiting them to take delivery of their keys.

Whilst in Cyprus Dave and Liz had taken in some lodgers. Their cats, and a dog called Buddy. On deciding to leave Cyprus they realised that they would have to leave the cats behind. Liz was heartbroken but she found a lovely home for them with her friend. Buddy the Lab was coming home with them. He was just 6 weeks old when Liz took him in, and she couldn’t bear to part with him. It’s a complicated malarkey bringing a dog back to the UK from, what is classed as a third world country. The paperwork was extensive and vet checks had to be completed before Buddy could leave Cyprus. It was decided that they would drive Buddy back to the UK as flying would probably be too traumatic for him. 

Once the vet checks and the visa has been granted, you have 5 days to reach the UK!

Hitching a ride with 2 young men who were travelling back also, Dave and Liz set off on New Years Eve. The weather was horrendous. They drove through Bulgaria in snow. They stopped frequently in below zero temperatures to stretch their legs and allow Buddy to have a walk. This is a dog that has never seen snow before! You can imagine what his little paws thought of that! He was quite excited.

Dave and Liz drove through nine countries in the space of 4 days. Until you actually drive through these countries I don’t think any of us can fully understand what a mammouth trip that was! Turkey, Bulgaria, Hungary, Serbia, Austria, Germany, Holland, Belgium and France. And they HAD to do it before the deadline was up, otherwise they would have been turned back to Cyprus. All in freezing weather. Liz told me that they covered Buddy up with a blanket to keep him warm in the car as he was shivering.

They made it the french port of Calais just in time. If they had been 5 minutes over they would not have been allowed across the channel.

Buddy and his mum and dad are now safely in England, Buddy here sat on his sofa on his lovely new floating home, Misty Blue.

Little does he know his adventure is just beginning!

Now Liz, Dave and Buddy are safely back in the UK and ready to take on the canals of the UK. Dave feels so happy that he can be part of the community of boaters at Trinity Marinas, everyone keen to help and lend a hand. The staff at Trinity and the boaters all make boating a wonderful experience for novices and experienced boaters combined. 

 

 

 

 

 

The Canal Staycation

The Canal Staycation

As we move into February and Christmas seems such a long time ago, most of us are now turning our attention to this years summer holiday. With the news full of Brexit uncertainty, falling exchange rates and terror attacks hitting beach resorts and cities in Europe, the Staycation is very much now an option for a lot of us. In fact, according to ABTA, in 2016, 71% of British holidaymakers stayed in the UK which was up from 64% the previous year.

With this in mind the purchase of a holiday home is now looked upon as better investment than leaving the money in the bank as interest rates are so low. This is great news for the towns and villages along our coastline as people search for the perfect spot to holiday year in and year out, giving them great views, gourmet pub dining, fantastic walks and all amenities on hand.

However, with coastal  property prices stretching budgets that little bit too far, more and more of us are looking towards Britains Inland Waterways. With over 2,000 miles to explore, that include, across England and Wales  1,569 locks, 53 tunnels and 3112 bridges navigate and admire.

Life on the UK’s waterways is slow paced, tranquil and allows you to explore the UK and see it from a whole new perspective. What better way to unwind than a slow cruise through the canals of middle England on a hazy summers day, morning up at a canal side pub for a pie and pint (or two), then a snooze on deck as the rolling fields pass by into the evening.

You will be surprised how easily accessible the canal boaters life is, with Trinity Marinas right on our doorstep. The Marina staff will be happy to advise on all aspects of boating life, from buying a Narrowboat, moorings and cruising to living aboard and maintenance.

Sources: Canal and riverboat trust

Towpath

What’s in the Name of a Boat?

What’s in the Name of a Boat?

There is often confusion around the names given to the types of boats we see on the waterways around Trinity Marinas. Is it canal boat? Narrowboat? Barge? Well, none are wrong; it is simply personal choice which term you use.

Technically, a barge is slightly different to a canal boat and narrowboat, as it is wider, but we hear them all! We also like to hear all the wonderful personal names that are given to boats.

If you have chosen to live your life on the water, you want your boat to have a name that is personal to you and that can make it your home. If you have a new boat built for you, then you can choose a name at the time of building so it can be added on by a signwriter.

But what if you buy a pre-loved boat that already has a name?

You may like the name it is, and choose to keep it. Or you may want to make it personal to you. Some say it is unlucky to change the name of a boat whilst it is in the water, so if you are superstitious, you could change the name whilst the boat is having any repairs done, as this will likely mean it will be out of the water.

It is believed that this superstition came from a time when it was required to rename wooden ships. This involved the old name being removed by planing the timber and the new one burnt in. Over time, this weakened the timbers and the boat was susceptible to sinking in a storm.

If you are not superstitious, it is fairly easy to change the name of your boat and some people even have a renaming ceremony. We’d love to hear your stories if this is something you have done!

To change the name of your boat, you need to inform British Waterways and give them the boat’s current name, registration number and the new name you want for your boat.

You also need to inform your insurance company quoting your policy number.

The name you choose for your boat may not be unique. As British Waterways knows boats by their number rather than their name, there is no requirement to choose one that doesn’t exist already. The five most common names for canal boats are:

  1. Kingfisher
  2. Dragonfly
  3. Merlin
  4. Willow
  5. Phoenix

Some more unusual ones that we have heard of are:

  • May Contain Nuts
  • My Newt
  • Sally Slap Cabbage
  • Wider Wake
  • She got the house

We’d love to hear if you have an unusual name for your boat!

If you need any extras for your boat, you can find all our canal boat accessories on our Chandlery Marine shop.

 

A Boaters Tale – Part 2

A Boaters Tale – Part 2

The Hunt for a Narrowboat

The decision made, Dave and Liz needed to find themselves a boat! But they’re living in Cyprus. How do you find the right Narrowboat in the UK, when there are so many Marinas to look at?

Liz and Dave headed for the UK to start their search for a Narrowboat. Their family lived nearby and coming from Leicester originally they began their search. They had viewed a few Marinas on their travels but none captured their hearts like Trinity.

They were passing by and saw the signpost for the Marina. They had seen it advertised during their search but had never actually been in.

As they drove down the driveway and looked over the marina for the first time Liz just said

“This is it. This is where we are going to moor our boat.”

After meeting with Christine they were even more eager to moor here. Christine made them feel “so welcome” and “so at home”. Her knowledge gave them confidence that they had absolutely made the right decision. She spoke to them at length about their plans and listened carefully, understanding what they wanted from their Narrowboat.

Moorings booked, they had still to find their Narrowboat.

They went back to Cyprus more determined than ever to find their boat. They had a lot of packing and planning to do as it was their intention to come back to the UK for the start of 2017.

Christine kept in touch, letting them know of any boats that might be suitable for them. Then in December, Dave had come back to view 6 boats. They were up and down the country so he had a lot of driving to do! On his way to Whilton Marina he called in to Trinity.

Ever welcoming Christine had just the boat to show him. Misty Blue. Dave was completely captivated by her. He stepped on board and instantly knew she was the boat for them! No haggling. No quibbling. He paid the deposit for her there and then!

He called Liz, who simply said “as long as she’s at Trinity”.

The Moorings are booked, the Narrowboat is purchased, now all the couple had to do was transport themselves and their Labrador – Buddy, across 9 countries……the story continues..

A Boaters Tale – Part 1

A Boaters Tale – Part 1

An epic journey to Misty Blue

17 years ago Dave and Liz bought themselves a holiday home in Cyprus. For the last 7 years they have lived there full time, lapping up the sun! The view from their home was a 360 degree vision of sheer beauty. Situated in the mountains their view showed the ocean in one direction, and mountains in the other. Why oh why did they choose to leave all of that behind? Why a Narrowboat? Why Trinity Marinas?

When they bought their house in the mountains of Turkish Cyprus, Dave and Liz were in their element. A ruined property they spent years renovating and decorating until they had created a fantastic home for themselves, and a holiday home for their family back home in England. Dave was perfectly happy tending to his garden and Liz enjoyed walks with her dog and with their neighbours. Not being able to speak the language was a bit of an obstacle since there weren’t many English speaking people in that part of the island. Dave went for lessons! He learnt how to speak Turkish so that he could easily converse with the villagers!

Life was great for a while but they were starting to get itchy feet and a yearning for home…..

Decision Made

In June 2016, Dave and Liz came to the massive decision to leave Cyprus and come back to the UK. There were many factors that induced that decision, one of them being the unrest in Syria.

“You have all this beauty surrounding you, but you are very well aware that Syria is only 40 miles away” – Dave

Dave and Liz had lived in some lovely places all over the world but it was also very apparent to them that they hadn’t seen much of the United Kingdom. Life in the services had taken them to many places, but the UK beckoned.

It had always been a dream of Dave’s to live aboard a Narrowboat and see the UK’s many wonderful views from the canals.

“My dream was to go somewhere warm for my retirement, now its time to live Dave’s dream” – Liz

And so the decision is made in June 2016. Now the hunt for a Narrowboat was on…….

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