How narrow boaters are affected by COVID-19

Here at Collidge & Partners we wanted to provide our clients with an interpretation on how to implement the government’s guidance on COVID-19 and as a boater. As of the 23rd March 2020, the government advised that all members of the public must stay at home with only certain reasons to travel.

You may be thinking how does this affect me?

Well, it should remain clear that the only people permitted on the waterways during these unprecedented times are those who permanently live aboard their boats and emergency services. People who have a canal boat purely for leisure, should not attempt to visit their moorings as you should now be self-isolating at home.

The Canal River Trust have put together a useful page of frequently asked questions if you are unsure what this means for you. They have decided to keep their towpaths open, however you should only use these for walking as a form of exercise once a day. Remember social distancing is key, so please keep two metres distance from other members of the public. They have also now instructed the following:

  • Non-essential travellers should stop using their boats and remain in their main home.
  • Continuous cruisers who had to abide by the 14 day rule, this has been lifted until Saturday 23rd May 2020.
  • No fishing on the waterways until notified otherwise.

Financial risks

If COVID-19 is affecting your employment or ability to work, the government has outlined where they are able to help. To see the support available please visit the following website

Boat Safety Scheme Licence Renewal

For those who need to renew their licences, the Boat Safety Scheme (BSS) have allowed a temporary extension to safety certificates that were due an examination before 30th April. It is important to check that your boat is still compliant with the examination requirements. For more information on this please visit the Boat Safety Scheme website here

Your Insurance

The temporary waiver of BSS Certification means that your cover is not affected if you have been unable to renew your insurance during the extension period.

You should also contact us if your boat is due a survey and you cannot have this carried out at this time.

If you are living aboard, do ensure that you minimise risks to yourself, your vessel and other people, remembering the rules on social distancing.  

We are happy to help with any questions you may have about your boat insurance, so please do give us a call on 01303 297940.

Be responsible and stay safe!

Update your knowledge on the most recent Coronavirus update on the government website here

Get in touch

For any other enquiries please either give us a call on 01303 297940, email us on or complete our enquiry form.