Further to our earlier email we now write with our thoughts regarding how best to commence lifting restrictions to recreational powered craft boating on the Thames.

Five organisations representing recreational powered craft users on the non-tidal Thames have agreed to join forces to encourage greater engagement and co-operation with the Environment Agency who are responsible for managing the waterway.
The Association of Thames Yacht Clubs (ATYC), DBA -The Barge Association (DBA), the National Association of Boat Owners (NABO), the Residential Boat Owners’ Association (RBOA) and the Thames MotorBoaters Association (TMBA), are all members of the Thames Navigation User Forum and specifically represent recreational powered craft owners.

There are over 8,000 recreational powered craft registered with EA Thames and, by way of registration and other charges, they collectively contribute almost £4 million of revenue income to the annual budget for the maintenance and upkeep of the river. This is by far the largest contribution from all sources other than public funding. Joint action is already in hand to address the current issues regarding continued restrictions to navigation, particularly as they affect powered craft. Further details will be circulated by the individual organisations directly to their members.

Mike Rodd
16th May 2020

On 3rd March, I represented NABO at the above Forum which brings together relevant EA personnel and representatives of a wide cross-section of users of the Thames, including the eight River User Groups (the RUGs) and many other representative groups. Chaired by the Thames Director, Julia Simpson, the very long meeting was valuable and, above all, illustrated that the new-look EA is making every effort to listen to its key river users in moving its navigational responsibilities forward over the next five years.

These are fast changing times and following our last communication we wanted to expand on some of the measures we are taking on Environment Agency navigations. We are continuing to follow Government advice during this Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic and our main priority remains protecting the health of our staff, customers and the general public. Since our last communication a week ago, we have seen the movement of boats on our waterways reduce and would like to thank those adhering to Government guidance. However, we are still seeing some non-essential travel. We therefore reiterate our advice to stop non-essential travel on our waterways and to make journeys only to access essential services and facilities.
Boat registration and Boat Safety Scheme

On Tuesday 3rd March 2020 I represented NABO at the above Forum which brings together representatives of a wide cross section of users of the Thames, including the 8 River User Groups (the RUGs) and many other representative groups, with relevant EA personnel.  Chaired by the Thames Director, Julia Simpson, the very long meeting was valuable and above all illustrated that the new-look EA is making every effort to listen to its key river users in moving its navigational responsibilities forward over the next 5 years.