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A list of organisations offering overnight holiday hire for the disabled

Accessible Canal Boat Holidays

Accessible Canal Boat Holidays

A canal boat holiday is such a fantastic way to spend a holiday and explore the UK taking you to places that you may not otherwise have the opportunity to explore. However, steep steps, narrow doorways and other features common on narrowboats and canal boats means canal boats are generally not well suited to wheelchair users or people with mobility difficulties without being specifically designed for that purpose.

We do not currently have any partners who have specifically adapted boats. However, there are a handful of companies in the UK canal network who do offer overnight accessible canal boat holidays:

  1. Willow Wren Canal Boat Holidays
    Departure Point: Rugby, North Oxford Canal
    Willow Wren have been providing narrowboat holidays for nearly 60 years, and their narrowboat "Beatris" is specifically designed for disabled & wheelchair use.
    Website: https://www.willowwren.co.uk/beatrice

  2. Accessible Boating Association
    Departure Point:Basingstoke Canal
    The Accessible Boating Association has 2 boats, 1 of which "Madam Butterfly" is available for Holiday Hire.
    Website: https://www.accessibleboating.org.uk/book_a_holiday

  3. Lyneal Trust
    Departure Point: Llangollen Canal
    Lyneal Trust offers canal boat and cottage holidays and canal day trips in beautiful Shropshire for people with disabilities, illness or injury, or any other vulnerability and their family, friends and carers who may accompany them.
    Website: https://www.lyneal-trust.org.uk/

  4. Nottingham Narrowboat Project
    Departure Point: Nottingham and Beeston Canal
    A volunteer led charity running with two 70ft boats; Megan and Tinkers Leen. Both available for overnight holiday hire.
    Website: https://nottinghamnarrowboatproject.org.uk/

  5. Pirate Castle
    Departure Point: Regent's Canal London
    Fully-accessible, wide beam canal boat - Pirate Prince is available for day trips on the canal or longer residential excursions.
    Website: https://www.thepiratecastle.org/camdens-fully-accessible-canal-boat

  6. South West Herts Narrowboat Trust
    Departure Point:River Gade
    One of South West Herts Narrowboat Trust 2 narrowboats is large enough to accommodate a wheelchair and the hydraulic lift will carry anyone with mobility difficulties into the cabin.
    Website: https://www.swhertsnarrowboat.org.uk/pickles-folly

  7. Bruce Boats
    Departure Point: Kennet & Avon Canal
    Bruce boats run a fleet of purpose built fully accessible widebeams.
    Website: https://bruceboats.katrust.org.uk/

  8. Peter Le Merchant Trust
    Departure Point:Grand union canal leicester arm
    Peter Le Merchant Trust's boats are designed with many accessible features making them an inclusive and comfortable environment for many; allowing passengers with a wide variety of mobility difficulties and health conditions to enjoy a holiday on the waterways. Self drive holiday hire is available on Jubilee.
    Website: https://www.peterlemarchanttrust.co.uk/boat-holidays

There are many more options for day boat hire, many of which you can find over at https://www.awa-uk.org.uk/, we however have focused on overnight canal boat hire as that is what we specialise in.

I would also recommend taking a look at the website of Accessible Waterways Association, an organisation working hard to make the waterways more accessible for all. The Canal And River Trust also has a fairly extensive list of Accessible Boat Hire options here.

If you run a holiday hire boat which is large enough to accommodate a wheelchair, please let us know and we will be happy to list it here.