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in port in Oxford

Narrowboat Cruise

By Robin Andersen.

Guy uses the long wooden pole to push the narrowboat away from the grassy bank where we moored overnight. I am at the tiller and I push the throttle forward into gear, pointing the boat toward the center of the canal, as our big diesel engine kicks in. We head south on the glassy water toward the next stop we see on the map.

narrowboat cruise in england

Photo: Robin Andersen

We boarded our 47-foot boat “Windsor” in Heyford, where we signed up for a 4-day excursion down to Oxford. There we will turn the boat around, and head back up. How we are to accomplish this feat remains a mystery to me.

narrowboat cruising

Photo: Robin Andersen

We are on the Oxfordshire canal, said to be the most scenic of them all. Though this is our first narrowboat adventure, I’m inclined to agree.

narrowboat cruise on the Oxfordshire canal

Photo: Robin Andersen

Maps of the canal system form an intricate, interlacing set of threads that seem to tie the country together.

route mapNevertheless, the canal system is a well-kept secret even to Britons, and few travelers have ever navigated these waterways.

narrowboat cruise route to Oxford

Photo: Robin Andersen

The most import points on the map, of course, are the pub icons with names like The Rock of Gibraltar, The Plough, and The Boat Inn. They are the constellations we use to find the best places to tie up and spend the night.

After leaving Heyford, our first stop is The Rock, and an evening filled with fish ‘n chips and beer, listening to canal buffs spinning the lore, and explaining the complex rules of etiquette for boating down the canal.

Narrowboating in England

Photo: Robin Andersen

Slow & Steady

We are gliding effortlessly at four knots—about the same speed that it takes to walk the towpaths that run alongside of the canal.

narrowboating

Photo: Robin Andersen

Built in the 18th and 19th centuries, the canals were used as the most efficient way to transport just about everything from coal to beer, as Britain moved into the industrial age. In those days horses on the towpaths pulled the heavily laden boats up and down the canals.

narrowboating canal

Photo: Robin Andersen

Passing under the old stone bridges transports you to the bygone days of a slower time.

Narrowboat Canal cruise

Photo: Guy Robinson

Four knots creates no wake, and the still, calm water, together with the sound of bird chatter and the near total absence of industrial noise creates an ambiance known only to the canal.

narrowboating canal cruise

Photo: Robin Andersen

It puts a smile on Guy’s face.

slow narrowboating cruise

Photo: Robin Andersen

Lots of Locks

But you inevitably must come to a lock. Did I mention this is an 18th-century mode of transport—with 18th-century technology—a time when we were all probably a little more hardy. But going through a lock is the only way to get down the canal.

narrowboat gears

Photo: Robin Andersen

First you pull your boat over to the mooring post, but only after you’ve jumped off a moving vessel, not quite close enough yet to the bank. And here’s a tip; don’t forget to take the line with you before you jump!

Narrowboat canal cruise

Photo: Robin Andersen

You need to approach the lock with determination, windlass in hand. Don’t drop it into the lock!

working a narrowboat

Photo: Robin Andersen

Use your windlass to crank up the “paddle-gear.”

As you crank up the “paddles,” the heavy steel plates on the gate, watch the water rush into the lock. Only after the lock reaches the same level as the canal do you open the gate and pull your boat into the slender passageway. Release the paddles back down slowly, don’t let them drop. Then close the gate.

narrowboat crank

Photo: Robin Andersen

It helps to use gloves.

working a narrowboat canal cruise

Photo: Guy Robinson

Here, you propel your body with all your might, sometimes backwards, to open the lock gate.

hands on narrowboat canal cruise

Photo: Robin Andersen

After closing the gate behind, raise the paddles on the front gate and watch your boat drop hastily to the lower level of the water. Then open the front gate, and you are ready to motor out to the lower level of the canal as it descends in elevation with the land. Here’s a different technique to open the front gate.

narrowboat canal cruise

Photo: Guy Robinson

I love the moss-lined stone walls and the view from inside the lowered lock just as we are about to make our escape through the slim stone arch and get back onto the calm waters of the canal.

narrowboat canal cruising

Photo: Robin Andersen

Close the gate behind you and marvel at the stone steps and grassy slopes of Pigeon Lock, which are exceptionally beautiful.

narrowboat cruising in England

Photo: Robin Andersen

It’s a real sense of accomplishment to succeed, and get on the other side of the lock. But don’t worry, you will repeat this process many times on your journey up and down the canal.

narrowboating in England

Photo: Robin Andersen

Lifting Bridges

Old wooden lifting bridges are easier to tilt up and go under.

narrowboating in Oxford

Photo: Guy Robinson

But they can offer other challenges. Getting through this tight stone passage is tricky.

narrowboating through lifting bridges

Photo: Robin Andersen

They offer another satisfying feeling of success!

narrowboat cruise navigation

Photo: Robin Andersen

Sleeping on a narrowboat in the Oxfordshire countryside is about as restful as it gets. Here we are moored for the night. It’s quiet and comfortable, and you wake up to birdsongs, though they do like to start the day at an early hour. Our boat comes fully equipped with bathroom, shower and running water, but the tank holds only so many gallons.

docked at Thrupp

Photo: Robin Andersen

We fill the water tank using the boat maintenance stations along the way. This one is in the classic little English village of Thrupp.

pubbing in Thrupp

Photo: Guy Robinson

Detective Inspector Morse

We moor at Thrupp to visit the Boat Inn, a favorite hangout of Colin Dexter, the novelist who created the fictional character, Detective Inspector Morse. Dexter roamed up and down the towpaths and frequented the pubs along the canal route. They say, write about what you know, and Dexter seems to have done just that.

Morse likes his pint of beer at any time of day, and in the BBC TV series Morse based on the novels, the detective is frequently seen sitting at one of the pubs along the canal enjoying a pint.

Oxford narrowboating

Photo: Robin Andersen

Narrowboats can be seen floating by on the water in episodes of Morse, and the spin-off series Lewis. An entire episode of Morse was devoted to a cold case from the 1800s when a woman was killed traveling on a narrowboat for hire. One Lewis episode had a suspect living on a moored narrowboat. And more than once, a body has been pulled out of the Oxfordshire canal.

As one of my fan-friends joked after we got back from our cruise, canals seem to be “dangerous places where people often end up murdered. You were lucky to have survived your jaunt.”

narrowboating and pub crawls

Photo: Robin Andersen

We left Thrupp in an early morning mist, just after the boat pictured here.

other boats on the canal

Photo: Robin Andersen

Traffic Jams

The canals are not wide, and at times they can narrow even further. If moored boats crowd both sides of the canal, it can test your nerves, and navigational skills. Just keep the tiller on a steady course and never go over four knots while passing moored boats.

slow and steady goes it while narrowboating

Photo: Robin Andersen

Signs remind those at the helm, or in canal lingo, “elum,” or the “steerer,” to slow down when passing moored boats.

navigating a narrowboat

Photo: Guy Robinson

On our way down the canal we admire boats much longer than ours. This one is at least 72 feet, and is the permanent residence of an entire family. It is well looked after, and its glossy new coat of paint shows it’s also well-loved.

narrowboating in england

Photo: Robin Andersen

Sights Along the Way

Permanent mooring often results in canal-side gardens, this one complete with a chiminea for enjoying a cool spring evening beside your boat, on dry land.

flowers along the canal

Photo: Robin Anderson

This Tea Room is open for business and features a fancifully decorated narrowboat. It can be reached by boat, or on the other side, by car.

colorful narrowboats

Photo: Robin Andersen

Muddy Waters is a children’s book series that tells the stories of fearless narrowboats as they embark on big adventures down the canals and waterways of Britain. You might call them the equivalent of Thomas the Tank Engine for narrowboats. This boat was once owned by the author herself, Sarah Clatcher.

fanciful narrowboat paint jobs

Photo: Robin Andersen

Visitors

Guy’s sister Kate jumped on board when we tied up just before Oxford. She lives in England, and has always wanted to ride down the canal on a narrowboat but never got around to it.

narrowboating is fun!

Photo: Robin Andersen

Kate and her husband Pete parked in the lot at The Plough and walked across the wide expanse of grass, and then a field to get to our mooring site.

narrowboating near Oxford

Photo: Robin Andersen

In this shot we are actually moored, just having a little fun horsing around on the boat at the tiller.

horsing around on deck

Photo: Guy Robinson

As we cruise further south, getting closer to Oxford, the canal begins to pass behind houses, where some owners keep boats alongside the banks for easy escapes on to the waterway.

narrowboat canal cruise

Photo: Robin Andersen

With the rural landscapes of Oxfordshire behind us, the setting gives way to the manicured gardens of the Oxford suburbs that back onto the canal. Fun statuary with an English twist are placed to hail boaters as they glide past.

views along the way

Photo: Robin Andersen

Oxford!

And here we have finally arrived in Oxford, where we must turn the boat around. Guy and Kate try to back the boat in, making a complete hash of it to the amusement of many onlookers. Shouting from the bank of the canal, I yell repeatedly they are doing it wrong, but they are well into sibling shenanigans.

They head in bow-first only after two failed attempts backwards. They tell me later their only regret was being caught without earplugs, so they might better have ignored my shouting.

in port in Oxford

Photo: Robin Andersen

On our way back up the canal after finally, successfully reversing course in Oxford, we pass by once again, the beautiful countryside of the upper portion of the Oxforshire canal.

lovely narrowboating scenery

Photo: Robin Andersen

Where just over the next boat.. is a peaceful herd of cows!

cows along the way

Photo: Robin Andersen

Toward the end of our trip, just as we are feeling terribly accomplished about negotiating all the locks, navigating, and crewing the boat with just the two of us, this hardy fellow passes by all on his own. He single-crews his beloved narrowboat up and down the canal systems of Britain.

other narrowboats

Photo: Robin Andersen

When we get back on the train at Heyford, we are in Oxford in 20 minutes. The same journey there and back just took us four days to complete. But here’s to our narrowboat canal cruise that seemed to us like a dance.

toasting narrowboating

Photo: Guy Robinson

We dance to keep dancing, for the pleasure of it, not necessarily to get to the other side of the dance floor.

Guy's reflection

Photo: Robin Andersen

In the end we are most grateful to the Canal and River Trust for doing such a wonderful job keeping the British canals open and in great working order for recreational boating.

the end of the trip

Photo: Robin Andersen

The words on this boat reflect the best sentiments of those who travel, not necessarily to arrive at a final destination.

narrowboat design

Photo: Robin Andersen

Quick Facts

Deck plan

Finding & booking a narrowboat:

We booked through Oxfordshire Narrowboats online. I also called them to ask questions and they were very helpful.

Price range:

We paid 490 pound sterling for a 47-foot boat for four days and four nights on the narrowboat. Prices vary by excursion, length of the boat and season.

the narrowboat interior

The interior. * Photo: Oxford Narrowboats

Boat capacity:

Our boat had one double-bed berth, and two big fold-out chairs, so it could sleep four.

The longest narrow boat can sleep up to 12 people comfortably.

Operating the boat, tiller, the locks etc:

Oxford Narrowboats provide a handy little well-organized booklet with terms and instructions. In addition, a staff member rides with you for about 15 minutes to the first lock, and shows you how to go through it. After you make your booking, they send you an information booklet and ask that you to read it before you arrive to take your boat out.

Narrowboating season:

We loved our March booking because it was not that cold, and we seemed to have the canal “all to ourselves.” The most popular time are the summer months, but you may have to wait behind several boats to get through the locks at the height of summer on a weekend.

There are permanently moored boats over the winter, and many people boat all year round.

Mealtime:

There is a little fridge and a well-functioning stove on board. We ate at the pubs at night, but the first night we heated up some Indian take-out we brought with us. Al dishes and flatware are provided.

The sleeping arrangements

The sleeping arrangements. * Photo: Oxford Narrowboats

Sleeping compartments:

It was perfectly comfortable. We are both tall, and the berth was long enough.

 

 

 

 

 

Robin Andersen & Guy Robinson are an adventurous couple, who, when they’re not professing at Fordham University, are walking through woods, riding trains or seeking out farmer’s markets for edibles and artisanal treats of all descriptions. They live just a little north of New York City, where Robin writes her books and Guy is close to his field biology research sites.

quirkycruise bird

 

 

 

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QuirkyCruise reader review

English Canals (WYVERN SHIPPING)

REVIEWER

Sue Sargeant from England.

CRUISE LINE

Wyvern Shipping.

SHIP

Daisy.

DESTINATION

Stoke Bruerne, England.

# OF NIGHTS

3.

DEPARTURE DATE & PORTS

July 2018, from Linsdale, England.

OVERALL RATING

5 out of 5 stars (5=excellent, 4=very good, 3=good, 2=poor, 1=terrible)

-Food Rating: 5

-Cabin Rating: 5

-Service/Crew Rating: 5

-Itinerary Rating: 5

HAVE YOU BEEN ON A SMALL SHIP CRUISE BEFORE?

I’ve been on 4 small ship cruises.

REVIEW

This self-drive, self-catered trip took my husband and I along the scenic Grand Union Canal from Linslade to Stoke Bruerne and back again. The shore crew were very knowledgeable and patiently explained the workings of the boat and helped us to practice steering and locks before setting off on our adventure in the spotless and well equipped ‘Daisy.’  There were lots of places to stop along the tow path for walks and pubs. This trip provided the perfect opportunity to step out of everyday life by enjoying the slower pace of canal life and getting closer to nature.  We will definitely be back!

 

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quirky-cruise-trinity-sailing-brixham-heritage-trawler-in-the-river

N.B. Part of Brixham’s heritage fleet is to be sold after The Trinity Sailing Foundation, a charity which has taken thousands of disadvantaged people to sea for 20 years, announced it has to cease current operations and redefine its mission. The Brixham-based charity’s three historic vessels — Leader (1892), Provident (1924), and Golden Vanity (1908) — will be sold after the charity said that changing conditions in recent years mean its previous operating model is no longer viable. If any further details about the future of the three historic ships become available, the news will appear here. Sad news indeed.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Trinity Sailing operates a fleet of three historic gaff-rigged sailing ships based primarily in Brixham, still an important South Devon fishing port, and also a tourist attraction thanks to the lovely setting. The fleet also cruises from other ports along the south coast of England, and up in Scotland for exploring the Western Isles.

Trinity Sailing

Brixham sailing trawlers with Leader (left) and Provident (right). * Photo: Trinity Sailing

In addition, the firm operates a foundation, a registered charity founded in 1999, taking 600 children annually from all backgrounds, including the disadvantaged, on sail training cruises where they learn teamwork, develop skills that they did not know they had, gain confidence in themselves and make new friends. The website provides more information and videos illustrating this important program.

Sail the scenic coastal waters around Britain aboard wooden sail-powered former Brixham fishing trawlers that take 7 to 12 passengers. Built on the River Dart in South Devon between 1892 and 1924, the cruises begin at one or two nights and then on up to a week or more. In the late 19th century, these fast sailing vessels once formed the backbone of Britain’s most important fishing fleet.

 

Trinity Sailing

Three crew aboard the Leader. * Photo: Trinity Sailing

Ships, Year Delivered & Passengers

LEADER built 1892, two masts, 12 passengers; PROVIDENT built 1924, two masts, 12 passengers; GOLDEN VANITY built 1908, one mast, 7 passengers.

Passenger Decks

Just two and no elevators (after all, these are historic sailing ships).

Passenger Profile

British, other Europeans, Australians, Americans, and Canadian of all ages.

Price

$ or approximately $130 per day

Itineraries

Operating season is end of March to late September.

  • Brittany (France) & Channel Islands (6-12 nights from Brixham).
  • Devon & Cornwall (1-9 nights from Brixham & Falmouth).
  • Dorset & Isle of Wight (6 nights from Poole); Isles of Scilly (6 nights from Falmouth).
  • West Coast of Scotland (6, 9 & 10 nights from Oban) with the first departure of the year from Falmouth and last ending at Falmouth.

Vessels are available for charter.

Trinity Sailing

Brixham heritage trawler in the River Dart, Dartmouth in Devon. * Photo: Trinity Sailing

Included Features

Excursions, sail training, meals, snacks between meals, and soft drinks.

Why Go?

Cruise in an historic wooden sailing vessel (a Brixham trawler) that once numbered in the thousands, and now just a few remain as heritage vessels. Share the experience with up to 12 like-minded adventurers who come for the sailing experience, coastal and island scenery, specific destinations to explore, and camaraderie. Anchor at night in a sheltered location, sail for part of the day and then go ashore. The skipper will lay out the day every morning at breakfast.

Trinity Sailing

Skipper Toni Knights may host art sessions during the cruise.

When to Go?

The season begins at the end of March and continues into late September.

Cabins

PROVIDENT has three double cabins with upper and lower berths, and a cabin for four in the fore peak. LEADER offers open dormitory-style accommodation for 12 passengers (with privacy curtains), and same for GOLD VANITY, which sleeps seven. All three offer shared toilets and hot showers.

Public Rooms

A saloon serves as the lounge and dining room, with additional space to hang out on the open decks.

Dining

Food is sourced locally at the embarkation ports and en route the emphasis is on fresh seafood and Britain’s bounty. A typical lunch would be a cold meat platter, with cheeses, salad and freshly baked bread, while for dinner, expect something the likes of freshly-caught Brixham fish, such as Hake or Lemon Sole, served with potatoes and vegetables followed by a crème brulle. (Reports indicate glowing satisfaction!) A bar on board stocks wine, beer and cider for purchase; soft drinks are included in the fares.

Trinity Sailing

Fresh oysters while enjoying a cruise on a former Brixham fishing trawler. * Photo: Trinity Sailing

Activities & Entertainment

Participate in sailing during the passage to the next destination; go ashore on walks and hikes and general explorations along the shoreline, to beaches and into villages. Perhaps enjoy an evening BBQ ashore and a few hours of sailing after dark. Scheduled theme cruises: art, music, birdwatching, wildlife, family.

Consider a charter of a vessel and establish your own special interests.

Special Notes

The British Isles and coastal France have fickle weather and often cool temperatures when at sea so come prepared for all types of conditions that may also involve changes in the itinerary when the weather dictates. The website also introduces the foundations work and the once huge importance of the Brixham fishing trawler to the country’s economy.

Trinity Sailing

Dolphins leaping for joy alongside Trinity Sailing’s historic Brixham trawler. * Photo: Trinity Sailing

Along the Same Lines

This is a unique sailing experience in Britain’s coastal waters from the Channel Islands in the south to Scotland up north.

Contact

Trinity Sailing, The Sail Loft, Pump Street, Brixham TQ5 8ED UK; +44 (0) 1803 88 33 55; www.trinitysailing.org.

 

🚃 🚃 AND be sure to read Ted’s related article, “A Chance Meeting on a Scottish Train” HERE, about how Ted first discovered Trinity Sailing!   🚃 🚃

 

 

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Scottish Train

By Ted Scull.

In early June at the end of a 10-day visit to Scotland, my wife and I boarded the morning train from Oban to Glasgow, the first of two train journeys down to London. We occupied a pair of assigned seats facing each other while next to me was an Englishman who said he was bound for Brixham on Devon’s South Coast.

I knew Brixham, an important fishing port, as one of my oldest friends grew up there and recently his wife had her ashes cast into the sea nearby.

The man seated to me introduced himself as Toni Knights, a skipper aboard an historic Brixham sail-powered fishing trawler outfitted to take a handful of cruise passengers for a firm called Trinity Sailing. In winter, to make ends meet, he is a commercial fisherman working on a modern diesel-powered fishing boat based in Brixham.

Scottish Train

Ted meets Toni. * Photo: Suellyn Scull

Toni’s just completed trip was skippering the Leader, a two-masted, wooden-hulled Brixham trawler, built way back in 1892, from Falmouth in Cornwall around Lands End and up through the Irish Sea to Oban on the West Coast of Scotland where she would be based for two months for cruises to the Western Isles.

He then opened his computer and showed me a video of his handsome ship under way using all eight sails and taking up to 12 passengers and a crew of six. The firm’s fleet of three sailing trawlers is based in ports largely on England’s South Coast and available for overnight cruises from short getaways on up to a week or more.

Toni then opened an envelope and shared with me a lovely set of watercolors he had painted showing the fleet and the waters through which they sailed. He sells his work to the passengers as a memento of their cruise. On the sailing schedule are cruises offering art classes under his supervision for those interested in painting landscapes, seascapes, bird and animal life.

 

Scottish Train

A Brixham trawler by Toni Kinghts

Most intrigued, I shared my connection to QuirkyCruise, and we started talking business while the two-car Scotrail train wound its way through the beautiful Scottish Highlands.

Thanks to Ted’s chance meeting of Toni, QuirkyCruise has added a review of Trinity Sailing to our roster of small ship cruises. Have a gander as it looks to be great fun if seeking a genuine sailing experience on an historic vessel and happily, not at all expensive.

 

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Patricia Cruises

The Trinity House Vessel PATRICIA serves as a working ship for Trinity House, the British agency that looks after lighthouses and buoys in the waters around England, Wales and the Channel Islands, but not Scotland. In recent years, 12 passengers have been accepted and occupy very comfortable cabins on working voyages that have you following the course of the ship’s duties. While the length of the voyage (a week) is known upon booking, the exact sailing details are usually sent out about 10 days in advance and that includes the dates, times, and ports of embarkation and (usually different) disembarkation. Last-minute alterations can and do happen. Perhaps not until the sailing commences will you know the exact itinerary, and because of the weather or other circumstances, a complete change of course may be required. Accepting these uncertainties, the passenger response has been very positive. It’s living on a floating English country house at sea where most of the crew is engaged in maritime safety tasks.

Note: The bookings go fast for the most popular dates.

Patricia Cruises

Patricia in Harwich. * Photo: Karl Zimmerman

Ship, Year Delivered & Passenger

THV PATRICIA (built 1982 & 12 passengers)

Passenger Profile

The dozen passengers are usually older and well-heeled British nationals. While there is no upper age limit, passengers must be able to climb and descend narrow, steep steps into and out of the work boat.

Passenger Decks

The accommodations are arranged on two decks.

Price: $$. Rates quoted are for the cabin (not per person) and for one week or two weeks. Passengers traveling alone will pay a single rate for the double cabin.

Included Features

Wine with dinner.

Itineraries

The PATRICIA operates passenger-carrying voyages between late April and into October. Port calls will usually occur only at embarkation and disembarkation, and the regions accessed may be the East Coast and the North Sea; the South Coast and the English Channel, including the Channel Islands off the coast of France; the Southwest off Cornwall and in the Bristol Channel, and the West Coast of England and Wales in the Irish Sea. The coastline is often in view as are islands. N.B. The website shows the Draft Itinerary for an entire year and the longest block in any one region is the East Coast June to August. However, this is a guide only and circumstances may require the ship to respond to an urgent need elsewhere.

Why Go?

Sailing aboard the PATRICIA is a unique experience that is not available anywhere else in the world, and if you can accept the uncertainties, the voyage could not be more comfortable nor provide a more relaxed social setting shared with fellow passengers and crew.

When to Go?

Anytime during the six-month season that passengers are carried. Early and late season voyages are cooler and cold out on the water. Even summer months can be chilly on deck at all hours.

Stateroom # 1, Prince Philip's cabin when aboard.

Stateroom # 1, Prince Philip’s cabin when aboard. * Photo: Karl Zimmermann

Cabins

The six cabins are all good-sized twin-bedded, windowed outsides with individual décor, lounge area, private facilities, including bath tub and shower, satellite TV, coffee/tea making facilities, Internet connections, and the very British amenity called a trouser press. Stateroom One is officially reserved for the Duke of Edinburgh and Stateroom Two for Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.

Public Rooms

The main lounge opens to an outside forward viewing deck for watching the ship approach the working locations and then the activities as they unfold. A helicopter landing deck at is the bow.

Elder Brethern Dining Room seats 12. * Photo: Karl Zimmermann

Elder Brethern Dining Room seats 12. * Photo: Karl Zimmermann

Dining

The passengers eat at one long table at set times and with a set menu. However, the food is very good British cooking by a chef dedicated to the passengers. Seating changes are encouraged so that everyone gets to meet one another. Service is formal and very attentive. Special dietary requirements are accepted with advance notice. Passengers tend to dress up a bit for dinner.

Activities & Entertainment

They are generally focused on watching the crew lifting and cleaning buoys and attending to and refueling lighthouses, all are now automated and unmanned. Lighthouses mark shoals, dangerous rocks or land masses such as islands and coastlines. Buoys mark safe shipping channels and navigational hazards including shipwrecks. The ship may also respond to emergencies. The bridge has an open policy allowing passengers to learn more about the ship’s activities and navigation in general.

Acting Captain (three stripes) Dave Cooper. * Photo: Karl Zimmermann

Acting Captain (three stripes) Dave Cooper with a chart of the approaches to Southampton. * Photo: Karl Zimmermann

Special Notes

If a change of crew (every three weeks) is scheduled at the end of the voyage booked, the ship may arrive at the disembarkation port a day in advance, though you stay aboard until the following day. Be sure you can handle last-minute changes such as the embarking and disembarking ports and even an itinerary that involves working in a completely different region or regions. Inquire well ahead of when you may want to go as bookings go fast for the most popular months.

If you might be interested in staying at a lighthouse cottage (separate from the lighthouse itself), the Trinity House website lists a dozen locations along the English coast and provides a link to the booking agent.

Along the Same Lines

One of a kind, nothing else like it.

Contact

Trinity House, The Quay, Essex, Harwich CO 12 3JW England; www.trinityhouse.co.uk then click on Holidays +11 44 1255 245156 if phoning from outside the United Kingdom

Passenger bookings are made through: Wildwings (incorporating Strand Travel), Davis House, Lodge Causeway, Bristol BS16 3JB England; www.wildwings.co.uk 011 44 117 96 58333 (from outside the UK) www.wildwings.co.uk/app-holidays/patricia-voyages

— TWS

 

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