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  1. #61
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Posts
    211

    Default Re: Crinan Canal, more hassle

    Webbie I think you are absolutely correct in your assumption here, on Facebook the topic has been closed for further comments after someone asked the OP if she had any sailing experience, I think that says it all ��
    Last edited by Railbob; 21-04-19 at 07:30.

  2. #62
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Argyll
    Posts
    6,143

    Default Re: Crinan Canal, more hassle

    Quote Originally Posted by MM5AHO View Post
    I cannot find any mention of this booking system or the early convoy system on the SC website. Nor on their Facebook page (where I asked, but got no reply).
    I suspect this is fake news.
    I do not think it is fake news even if it should be, the author is one of the managers on the Crinan and the outdoor staff have all been briefed on it. The MOA is among organizations that it has been sent out to. Story is it was dreamed up after a trip out to see Neptunes staircase. The objective seems to be to operate with a reduced workforce. The reason why it may not be on the website might be that not everyone thinks it might be a good idea?

  3. #63
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Central Scotland
    Posts
    2,301

    Default Re: Crinan Canal, more hassle

    The canal isn't a novelty or a scenic diversion any more for me, more a shortcut.
    I've lost count of how many trips through there, but certainly between 70 and 100. As a business model its a bit doomed. An ancient asset with a high maintenance cost, a market that doesn't allow much more than their current charges, and a staffing requirement that adds to these costs. I've been though in recent years where only a handful of boats transitted that day, so perhaps an income of a few 100s. Of course there are busy days when they might have some 10s of boats. But I can't see economic sense in it overall, and can't see a way to make it work. I guess it will stumble along as now, with the Government stepping in now and again with a grant. (way of getting general tax payers to contribute to the cost of something for a the few).
    Geoff. C.: Galvanizer and anchor manufacturer.

  4. #64
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Location
    Rockall
    Posts
    29,852

    Default Re: Crinan Canal, more hassle

    Quote Originally Posted by Quandary View Post
    I do not think it is fake news even if it should be, the author is one of the managers on the Crinan and the outdoor staff have all been briefed on it. The MOA is among organizations that it has been sent out to. Story is it was dreamed up after a trip out to see Neptunes staircase. The objective seems to be to operate with a reduced workforce. The reason why it may not be on the website might be that not everyone thinks it might be a good idea?
    How many managers are there? In 1978-79 there was one, plus an accountant who ran the office.

  5. #65
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Argyll
    Posts
    6,143

    Default Re: Crinan Canal, more hassle

    Well, Helen, who does reception, looks after berthing contracts, clerical and communications and has been known to come out and operate locks or bridges when needed could probably do it all too.
    There is a rather grand house above the basin, latterly an hotel, but now boarded up, vacant and quite derelict which used to be Canal House where the manager used to live, I am told he was usually a retired Naval officer and wore a uniform, he had stables, haylofts, a water turbine generator and a grand garden with staff to work it. Of course that was when the canal was part of the steamer route from Glasgow to Oban and on out to the Islands.
    Last edited by Quandary; 21-04-19 at 19:31.

  6. #66
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Location
    SW Scotland
    Posts
    18,880

    Default Re: Crinan Canal, more hassle

    Having thought about it, I'm warming to the idea of being able to prebook a convoy place up to 24 hours in advance. One of the recent hassles has been turning up without knowing when you'll be able to set off, so knowing that a group will be leaving at such-and-such a time and that you have a place in it could be a significant improvement. "Hello, Ardrishaig. I'm thinking of coming overnight from Port Bannatyne. Have you a convoy place tomorrow?" "Sure. The 9am group is full, but we'll put you down as number three for the 10am one. No need to rush, just be at the sea lock for 9.30, please"
    "Seamen are always wanting to do things the proper way; and I like to do them my way."

  7. #67
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Argyll
    Posts
    6,143

    Default Re: Crinan Canal, more hassle

    Good luck with that, if the current performance is an indicator you could be waiting a couple of hours trying to find someone to come back to operate each bridge.

  8. #68
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Location
    SW Scotland
    Posts
    18,880

    Default Re: Crinan Canal, more hassle

    Quote Originally Posted by Quandary View Post
    Good luck with that, if the current performance is an indicator you could be waiting a couple of hours trying to find someone to come back to operate each bridge.
    Well, that's the thing. Scheduled convoys could well work better at time of staff shortages than go-when-you-can. We'll see.
    "Seamen are always wanting to do things the proper way; and I like to do them my way."

  9. #69
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Location
    North-east Scotland
    Posts
    329

    Default Re: Crinan Canal, more hassle

    Just came through the Canal yesterday - in Crinan Basin as I write. We arrived at Ardrishaig around 2030, and at the advice of the female staff member whom we had talked to by phone earlier, we stayed overnight in the sealock and were let through at 0830 in the morning when the staff arrived. We (two of us) teamed up with another boat of three, previously unknown to us, and went together all the way through. We could have done it easily in a day, but stopped overnight at Cairnbarn. The staff opened up the bridges along the way, the rest of the locks we did ourselves. Neither of us had a pilot - it would have made things slightly easier, I suppose, in preparing the next lock each time, but quite doable without. I have to say that all the staff members we met along the way, male and female, were very friendly and helpful.

    Weather and views were stunning, it must be one of the most beautiful canals in the world, and it would be a real shame if it had to be decommissioned.

  10. #70
    Join Date
    Nov 2002
    Location
    Boat - Clyde, Home - Overlooking the Tamar
    Posts
    4,010

    Default Re: Crinan Canal, more hassle

    We similarly had a good passage through last week. A little muttering at Ardrishaig about boats locking in at low tide consuming too much water, if that is a problem then Scottish Canals should make users aware that they only lock HW +- 3 hrs or suchlike. However locking in and out at Crinan end without any such comments or concerns. Staff all helpful with a smile, pleasant trip. Likewise we were two up and managed it no trouble, our second time through. Key thing is the crew member on board to have control of the bowline whilst in the cockpit (whilst steering and doing the stern line) by using a long line via a series of blocks from the bow. Showers at Crinan need more oomph.

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