May 23 2013 Latest news:
by Else Kvist , Reporter
Monday, July 23, 2012
Boaters holidaying along Regent’s Canal say they have been forced to live in unhygienic conditions without pumping out facilities for their toilets and showers.
They say the Canal & River Trust, formerly known as British Waterways, have failed to provide them with pumping out facilities to get rid of their sewage.
They also say no water tap has been installed near their barges and narrow boats moored opposite Queen Mary University.
Among the groups boaters is John Guest, from Hampshire who paid £1,200 to rent a narrow boat
for six weeks with his wife Anne.
He said: “It is so unhygienic it is unbelievable. Soon we won’t be able to use our toilet.
“There is only one tap for all the boaters up by Old Ford so we have to carry water down in small tanks every time we need to wash. I’ve not been able to have a shower yet.
“In our contracts we were promised a service for pumping out our sewage. We are expecting there to be about 20 boats soon, plus there is now the Floating Market with more boats further along, so the problem could get worse.
“Nobody are telling us what is going on and our enquiries don’t seem to reach the right people within the Canal & River Trust.”
Another boater, Sue McMurray, who has come from Wiltshire with her husband Rob, for the Olympics, said they could soon encounter bigger problems too.
She said: “At the moment we’re walking up to Mile End Park Leisure Centre to shower. It’s not too bad just a bit of a waste of time and a bit like camping. I try to wash up in as little water as possible.”
But she said they paid £680 for four weeks and had expected a better service.
Head of Olympic Programmes at the Canal & River Trust, Jason Leach, said:
“Our service boats have been out on the canal every day for the last five days, providing water and pump services to boaters, so there should be no reason for some people to have gone without - this may have been a simple missed passage.
“Now that we have received this complaint we will get in touch with the boaters to ensure they know how they can access these services.
“A new tap will be installed close to Queen Mary University shortly.”