Good News for boat hire booking in 2020

Corona Virus and short break holiday bookings

Risk free booking for your 2020 holiday.

It’s a difficult time in the Boat Hire business for us and our customers, we have no idea what the future holds and let’s face it no one has a crystal ball, the experts don’t know when we are going to be back to normal following this pandemic!

So what can we do to give you a glimmer of hope for the rest of 2020, we have been racking our brains to see what we can do, we hope the following will help:

  • To give you confidence that you can book with us without any risk, we are offering deposit free bookings for all short break boat hire, just simply book online and the system will ask you for your credit/debit card details but WILL NOT take a deposit or any future payments automatically, or you can give us a call and we can book you in over the phone. The deposit is normally £100.
  • You can reschedule or cancel your trip any time without penalty, upto 14 days before hire, after 14 days, you can still reschedule if the Covid-19 situation requires it.
  • The cost of your holiday will not need to be paid for until 14 days before you go,  we will not ask for payment of the balance of the lockdown/ restrictions are still place, normally balances are due 28 days before hire.
  • We will also deduct £50 from the total price as a thank you for booking during these uncertain times. Please enter the code COVID19 at check out.  We would appreciate it if you would put this to wards a meal in one of the pubs/cafes/shops along the canal whilst on your holiday, I am sure they will be grateful.

Please see the terms and conditions below;

  • We reserve the right to alter or remove these offers without notice.
  • Valid until 31st May or when the lockdown ends, whichever is the soonest.
  • Valid only for booking during 2020.
  • If not canceled or rescheduled before 14 days prior to departure the full amount is payable, unless lockdown is still in places.

Remember Autumn is a stunning time of year to holiday on the canals, with the leaves on the trees changing colour and the abundance of wild fruits etc on the canal bank.

For more information on short break boat hire please select one of the boats below;

Cheshire Cat

Home James

Boat Hire Home James waiting for the time to enter Saltesford tunnel
Boat hire on the Bridgewater Canal, Home Jame cruising past Walton Gardens

BOOK NOW!

Covid-19 (corona virus) latest APRIL 2020 (updated)

Conronavirus is going to have a massive impact on all small businesses

We believe that the impact of COVID-19 is the biggest threat to our business in the 28 years we have been running Thorn Marine.  We also believe the sectors that are going to be hit the hardest are retail, leisure and travel.  These are our main areas of business!!!

Below we have detailed what we are currently doing with in each area of our business.

This page was updated 4th April 2020

Day boat Hire

With the current movement restrictions in place all non essential travel is banned this also applies to canals, whilst this order is in place we have no option but to cancel all Day Boat trips. We have contacted all the people who have bookings for April and have either moved them to a new date or refunded them.  We have taken the unusual step of opening up next years diary so we can move you bookings to 2021, this is only for existing booking.  If you have boat booked in May we will contact you when we know how long these restrictions are going to be in place for, again we will either reschedule you trip for later in the year or next year, or we can cancel and refund your deposit.  If you wish to contact us to reschedule the please call us on 01925 265129.

Short Break Hire

It is really the same situation with hire boats as it is with the day boat.

With the current movement restrictions in place all non essential travel is banned this also applies to canals, whilst this order is in place we have no option but to cancel all Day Boat trips. We have contacted all the people who have bookings for April and have either moved them to a new date or refunded them.  We have taken the unusual step of opening up next years diary so we can move you bookings to 2021, this is only for existing booking.  If you have boat booked in May we will contact you when we know how long these restrictions are going to be in place for, again we will either reschedule you trip for later in the year or next year, or we can cancel and refund your deposit.  If you wish to contact us to reschedule the please call us on 01925 265129.

We will be launching a no deposit booking scheme for later in the year soon, this will allow you to book with confidence and you will be able to cancel at any point upto 7 days before hire, more details will follow soon.

Shop, Boat Safety Certificates and Maintenance

Again let me assure you your welfare is our priority, we have updated our cleaning policies and are regularly sanitising all contact points, door handles, card machine, worktops, etc

The shop is currently only open 10am until 4pm Friday, Saturday, Sunday and Monday. We will monitor this and comply with any government advice.  We believe diesel, coal, water, gas, pump out, elsan, etc are all essential supplies and services.  We are still getting supplies from all our suppliers and can order any special items in for you.

Boat Safety Scheme Certificates are temporarily suspended until 14th April 2020 please see the website for more information. Please make sure you read it as there is some important information on there!  If your BSSC is due in the next 3 months, please get in touch with us NOW as we already have about ten on the waiting list, we will add you to the list and get to you as soon as we can.

https://www.boatsafetyscheme.org/about-us/news-and-press-releases/news-releases/nr20-001-covid-19-bss-temporary-suspension/

We are still booking in boats for maintenance and blacking so if you need work to be done please contact us.

Also if you are stuck or need supplies, etc then please get in touch and we will do what we can to help!

 

Just a final word from us

Thanks for your help and understanding with this rapidly changing situation, as and when we know more we will update the site and facebook, if you are unsure about anything, please give us a call and we will see what we can sort for you.  The phone is on divert to Nigel’s mobile 24/7.

Please remember going to or out on your boat may not be deemed as essential travel by officials see the statements below form Canal and river trust and The Bridgewater Canal Co.

https://canalrivertrust.org.uk/enjoy-the-waterways/safety-on-our-waterways/coronavirus

http://www.bridgewatercanal.co.uk/news/article.aspx?ID=281&fbclid=IwAR2suLiYc-zq2DH_pHmtKCM2d_l7TtX0fYJVf1BcVb-uaKCNB-HmYwVMhpw

Keep Safe and Well

Margaret, Brian, Nigel  and Dan

Covid-19 (corona virus) latest

Conronavirus is going to have a massive impact on all small businesses

We believe that the impact of COVID-19 is the biggest threat to our business in the 28 years we have been running Thorn Marine.  We also believe the sectors that are going to be hit the hardest are retail, leisure and travel.  These are our main areas of business!!!

Below we have detailed what we are currently doing with in each area of our business.

Day boat Hire

First let me assure you your welfare is our priority, we have updated our cleaning policies and the boat is now deep cleaned/disinfected inside and out after each trip.

The Government have advised to minimise social gatherings, a trip out on the dayboat is usually a social gathering. So we are leaving it up to you to decide what you want to do. If you are a family group who regularly socialise or live together then going out on the boat is no different to your every day environment. If you are a group of friends who meet infrequently or in one of the danger groups then rescheduling or cancelling might be the safest option. If you do wish to talk to us then please get in touch, we can then either reschedule your day or refund you.

Pubs and restaurants etc, we believe The barn Owl, Ye Old No3, etc are still open, this may change so it will be worth double checking with the venue if it is open, or bring a Picnic to enjoy on the boat.

Currently we are not sure how long the problem is going to last or if it is going to get worse. We will keep updating Facebook and the website as things develop!

Our normal cancellation policy is quite strict, however in this situation we are proposing that, any dayboat hire booked in for March or April you can reschedule your trip to later in the year and by the end of the week we will be offering to reschedule you to the same month next year, with out loosing your 2020 deposit or balance payments*.  We will, if there is no other option, cancel your booking and refund you, this is not the best option for us as it will dramatically effect our business this year.  We will be rolling this offer on month by month as long is the situation continues.

*(We are due a substantial license fee upgrade next year this will have to be paid as part of the balance, it is substantial to us but when we divide it up across all the hire it will probably be around a £10 per trip.)

Short Break Hire

Again let me assure you your welfare is our priority, we have updated our cleaning policies and the boats are now deep cleaned/disinfected inside and out after each trip.

As far as we are concerned it is business as usual, there is nothing stopping you taking a holiday on one of our boats, unless you have to self isolate.  We have spoken to all the customers who are booked in for March and April and they are all happy to continue to take there holiday.  Our canal is lock free for over 30 miles and another 13 miles with just one small lock, so isolation is easy!

Pubs and restaurants etc, we believe are still open, this may change so it will be worth double checking  if you are planning to stop off for a pub lunch, many places, we believe, will soon be offering a takeaway service.

Currently we are not sure how long the problem is going to last or if it is going to get worse. We will keep updating Facebook and the website as things develop!

We usually have strict cancellation conditions, however in this situation what we are proposing is a no quibble cancellation policy, if you need to cancel your trip in the next 2 months (rolling) due to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) situation, be that you need to isolate, you are ill, or you are just unsure we will refund you ALL of your money.  I would however prefer if you didn’t cancel as this is going to dramatically effect our business and I would prefer if you would reschedule you holiday for later in the year!*

As a Special offer I will be up dating the system tonight from April 17th until the end of May Cheshire Cat Will have an additional 20% discount on all booking, these are included in our no quibble cancellation! policy! The owner of Cheshire Cat is usually over for her 6 week holiday during this period, unfortunately she is unable to travel due to the current restrictions, she has rescheduled for later in the year

*(The price of a break varies throughout the year and any difference will need to be paid.)

Shop, Boat Safety Certificates and Maintenance

Again let me assure you your welfare is our priority, we have updated our cleaning policies and are regularly sanitising all contact points, door handles, card machine, worktops, etc

The shop remains open 8-5, 7 days a week. We will monitor this and comply with any government advice.  We believe diesel, coal, water, gas, pumpout, elsan, etc are all essential supplies and services.  We are still getting supplies from all our suppliers and can order any special items in for you.

Boat Safety Scheme Certificates are still going ahead, we are currently waiting for an update from the Management Committee, CRT and other licencing authorities as to what the future holds, when we know more we will let you know.  Our initial advice is if you need one soon and are in a high risk group/self isolating then contact the licencing authority and your insurance asap and discuss it with them.

We still have boats coming in for maintenance and blacking so if you need work to be done please contact us.

If you do need to cancel your BSSC or work for whatever reason please let us know asap we are here to help!

Also if you are stuck or need supplies, etc then please get in touch and we will do what we can to help!

 

Just a final word from us

Thanks for your help and understanding with this rapidly changing situation, as and when we know more we will update the site and facebook, if you are unsure about anything, please give us a call and we will see what we can sort for you.

Keep Safe and Well

Margaret, Brian, Nigel  and Dan

Carbon Monoxide Awareness Week

What, where, how?

Carbon monoxide (CO) is a colourless, odourless, tasteless, poisonous gas produced by incomplete burning of carbon-based fuels, including gas, oil, wood and coal.

Anything that burns with a yellow flame produces Carbon Monoxide; fires, faulty gas appliances, candles, etc. Boat engines and generators also produce Carbon Monoxide.

CO can also be produced from the ashes from your fire, please ensure ashes are stored outside away from vents in a suitable container with a lid. Please see this form the BBC; Carbon monoxide warning over ash from stoves

Prevension

Ensure all appliances are suitable and well maintained.

Sweep/clean flues regularly.

Ensure adequate ventilation.

Fit a suitable CO alarm, should conform to BS EN 50291-2 (BS EN 50291-1 alarms are not suitable for the marine environment).

 

Choosing the right Carbon Monoxide alarm? from Boat Safety Scheme on Vimeo.

 

Urban Myths

Carbon Monoxide is heavier than air.

NO, carbon monoxide is slightly lighter than air, Carbon monoxide is 28.01 g/mol and air varies from 29-32 g/mol, depending many factors including composition, temperature, elevation, humidity.  However two things to consider, firstly it is usually produce by fuel burning appliances, they produce hot gasses, hot air rises, second, it has been found that carbon monoxide mixes very well in air, with drafts etc. and will equalise throughout the boat.

It is CO (Carbon Monoxide) not CO2 (Carbon Dioxide).

Many people mix them up, CO2 can be dangerous at high quantities and is not good for the environment, but is generally harmless.

I don’t have any fuel burning appliances, i’m fine.

You can still get Carbon monoxide in you boat from you neighbours boat, engine, generator, etc.

All my appliances are Balanced flue (room sealed).

These type of appliances are safer than flue less or open flue, but only if maintained and checked regularly.

Symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning

The symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning are not always obvious, particularly during low-level exposure.

A tension-type headache is the most common symptom of mild carbon monoxide poisoning.

Other symptoms include:

  • dizziness
  • feeling and being sick
  • tiredness and confusion
  • stomach pain
  • shortness of breath and difficulty breathing

The symptoms of exposure to low levels of carbon monoxide can be similar to those of food poisoning and flu.

If you think you have been exposed to CO please seek medical advice from your GP or call 101, or you think you have been exposed to high levels go to your local A&E.

The Symptoms of Carbon Monoxide Poisoning from Boat Safety Scheme on Vimeo.

 

Positioning of a carbon monoxide alarm

For the best protection, follow the alarm manufacturer’s installation instructions as far as the space and nature of the boat allow.

But if the placement directions are difficult to meet on your boat, these are the ‘best practice’ points

Try to place the alarm:

  • in living quarters between 1m and 3m (on plan view) from the appliance
  • in living quarters fix alarms high up on a wall, but at least 150mm from the ceiling and where the indicator lights can be seen
  • in sleeping quarters have the alarm in the “breathing zone”, i.e. near the bed head
  • before fixing, test that you can hear an alarm from any position in the boat (or buy an additional alarm)

Don’t Forget to test them regularly, If it doesn’t work it can’t save your life!

This not meant to be a definitive guide to all things Carbon Monoxide, it is just to raise awareness.  This has been prompted by the numerous post I have recently seen on Facebook that could lead to a danger from Carbon Monoxide.

Please go to the Boat Safety Scheme website HERE. They have compiled wealth of information related to boats and CO from many expert organisations.

Bottled Gas

Bottle Gas – New prices

We have just re-negotiated our prices for some of our bottled gas and it is good news.

If you currently have a Extra or Harris gas bottle the the cost of a 12kg Butane bottle has dropped to £25 for a refill from £27.50!

If you require a new bottle our bottle charge has now Dropped to £20 from £30

New mobile fire will be available soon from £99

What does this actually mean if you need a new bottle it will typically cost you £81.75 or £41.75 for a refill from a well known brand!

Ours are £45 for a new bottle and £25 for a refill, out bottles are a little bit smaller 3kg(easier to carry), but with this factored in it is still a big saving!

 

 

5*’s on Airbnb

Home James is now available on AirBnb

We have hosted our first two guests from Airbnb, and we are feeling great as both have left us 5* review, proves we must be doing somethin right!

It is quite a unique experience staying on board Home James, we will be on hand to welcome you onboard and show you round, and are available during you stay.

If you are planning a trip to Cheshire or you have friends or family coming to Stockton Heath and are looking for somewhere different to stay?  You can now book to stay on Home James for as little as 2 nights, It is currently only available during our low season November to February but if it works we will offer this all through the year when we have space available!

AirBnb

This is for static hire only, if you wish we can arrange a short trip at an additional cost, or if you wish to take the boat out for a break please book this through out website HERE or you can call us on 01925 265129 or email us at bookings@thornmarine.co.uk.

 

First Airbnb guests

Home James is now available on AirBnb

If you are planning a trip to Cheshire or you have friends or family coming to Stockton Heath and are looking for some where different to stay?  You can now book to stay on Home James for as little as 2 nights, It is currently only available during our low season November to February but if it works we will offer this all through the year when we have space available!

AirBnb

This is for static hire only, if you wish we can arrange a short trip at an additional cost, or if you wish to take the boat out for a break please book this through out website HERE or you can call us on 01925 265129 or email us at bookings@thornmarine.co.uk.

 

Lots of news this week!

Online booking now available!

If you are looking to book a short break you can now do it through our website.  Simply click the “Book a short Break” Button top right or on any of the short break pages, this will take you through to a booking page have look at the instructions, the system is based around a hotel booking system, so is not a perfect fit for boat hire but does a good job and it is free so we don’t have increase our cost to cover it.

Have a look here – Booking Page

You can also pay you deposit and balance online, we have teamed up with a company called FabPay, fear not they utilise SagePay as there payment gateway, it has the highest level of card data security (PCI DSS Level 1) and is 100% secure.

Fear not, if you do not want to book online we can still get you sorted either over the phone or in store, give us a call on 01925 265129 or email us bookings@thornmarine.co.uk and we will get back to you.

We have also sorted out pricing for next year, we have had to raise the prices a little £20-£40 for a midweek break BUT we have decreased the weekend prices by as much as £170!  We have also added an automatic discount to the system, if you book a weeks break you get a 10% Discount and for 10 days or more 15%

Cheshire Cat

Home James

Home James is now available on AirBnb

If you are planning a trip to Cheshire or you have friends or family coming to Stockton Heath and are looking for some where different to stay?  You can now book to stay on Home James for as little as 2 nights, It is currently only available during our low season November to February but if it works we will offer this all through the year when we have space available!

AirBnb

This is for static hire only, if you wish we can arrange a short trip at an additional cost, or if you wish to take the boat out for a break please book this through out website HERE or you can call us on 01925 265129 or email us at bookings@thornmarine.co.uk.

 

End of an era at Claymoore Navigation.

For over 40 years Claymoore Navigation have been on the Bridgewater Canal offering great affordable Canal holidays.

Sadly last month they closed their doors for the last time, the boats and most of the equipment were auctioned off and the site is now empty.

We have always worked very closely with them as we were in the same line of business, including hiring out each others boats and helping their customers when on holiday. They will be missed on the Bridgewater.

We are still in regular contact with some of the staff and they have found new jobs or are taking a well deserved break.

In November of last year we were asked to take over the running of Cheshire Cat, please follow the link for more information, she is what is known as a sponsored boat as in the boat is owned by a private individual who uses the boat occasionally but the rest of the time is let out on hire, manged by us. We still have space available through the summer if you are looking to book your break.

We are aware of some of their customer who booked in advance will unfortunately not able to take their holidays, as mentioned above we do have availability on Cheshire Cat, but our Dayboat is booked up weekends until Mid October and we have very few weekdays available.

We will have a second short break hire boat operating in the near future (in time for the summer), watch this space!!!!!!!!