There are a number of charitable trusts and organisations that specialise in the provision of self-drive canal boats with special adaptation to facilitate wheelchair access or to allow crew with mobility difficulties the possibility to enjoy a shared holiday with friend and families.
UK Canals & Rivers
The list below provides the websites for groups and organisations that offer narrowboats and widebeam boats for hire which have been specifically adapted to accomodate those with limited access or mobility:
Accessible Boating Association – two boats on Basingstoke Canal
Bruce Charitable Trust has a fleet of four specially constructed broad-beamed boats on the Kennet and Avon Canal, available for hire by groups including the disabled. Two bases.
CanalAbility – (on R. Stort in Harlow)
Ethel Trust Community Barge (Thorne, n. of Doncaster, on Stainforth and Keadby Canal)
Lyneal Trust – nr. Ellesmere on Llangollen Canal; cottages also
National Community Boats Association – “… encourage and support community boating organisations within the UK …”
Peter Le Marchant Trust – (Loughborough, Leics.)
River Thames Boat Project – (River Thames, Kingston/Richmond/St Katharine Docks)
Rivertime Boat Trust – (River Thames between Windsor and Oxford)
Seagull Trust – free canal cruising (Scotland)
South Staffordshire Narrowboat Company – (Wolverhampton, West Mids.)
Stockport Canalboat Trust offers day trips and short holidays for people with disabilities around the canals of North West England.
Waterways Experiences – charter for crewed or self steer one of 3 widebeam boats on the Grand Union Canal at Hemel Hempstead. Day or residential trips.
Willow Trust – (Saul Junction, on G&S)
The list below provides the details for groups and organisations that offer cruisers for hire on the Norfolk Broads which have been specifically adapted to accomodate those with limited access or mobility:
Neatishead – River Ant – Nancy Oldfield Trust:
Motor cruising with wheelchair access, sailing, canoeing, and kayaking for all, whatever disabilities you may have. Day activities, holidays and courses.
Tel: 01692 630572
Norwich – River Wensum – City Boats:
Two electric day boats, each takes eight people and has a hydraulic lift for wheelchairs.
Tel: 01603 701701
Ormesby Little Broad – Broads Authority:
Wheelyboat, with ramp for access, based at Eel’s Foot Inn at Ormesby St Michael. Takes 4 people including one wheelchair user.
Tel: 01493 730342
Oulton Broad – River Waveney – Waveney Sailability:
Sailing club offering members with disabilities the opportunity to sail in specially adapted dinghies.
Tel: 01502 475228
If we have missed anyone out, please dont hesiate to add a comment and we will update all of our lists as soon as possible.