This page.  
A detailoed description of our boats, Oak and Ash.   
Where we will be going in 2004. 

Hotel Narrow Boats

on the Canals and Rivers of the UK

Your questions answered.

 
How to book a cruise, prices, discounts, booking form.   

 

  What should I bring with me?
  Are there any restrictions I need to know about?
  How, where and when do I join the boats?
  I am not very mobile is this holiday suitable for me?
  What will a typical day be like?
  There are foods I do not eat, can you cope with this?
  What sort of food do you serve for dinner?
  Can I come on my own or do I have to book the whole boat?
  How can I really be sure what it's like?

 

What should I bring ….

  • You come to relax, spending some time outdoors - we do not expect you to 'dress for dinner'. (We just change to clean ordinary clothes after a days work.) You will want comfortable clothes which do not matter if you pick up mud etc. from being outside, remember it can get chilly in the evenings, even in the height of the summer, it also may rain so remember a waterproof coat.
  • Bring shoes which you do not mind walking on muddy towpaths with, and which will not slip on metal decks. A pair of slippers is an idea to relax in for the evening and to change into when you take off your muddy shoes.
  • Your case or bag will go under a bed but it will need to be soft sided to ensure it fits the restricted space.
  • All bedding and towels are provided.
  • We also have a varied library of books, DVDs and CDs for you to use.
  • To add to your enjoyment bring binoculars, a camera or a camcorder. We have 240 volt sockets for recharging batteries on the motor and there is a 12 volt socket in your cabin.

Are there any restrictions?

Unfortunately for the benefit of all our guests we have to point out that ….

  • Although we love pets, we generally are are not able to accommodate any pets at all on the boats for the safety of everyone. If however it is part of a booking by one individual for the whole butty certain well behaved pets are possible. In that case please talk through your needs with us.
  • We can not accept bookings which include children under 14 years of age, unless it is part of a booking by one individual for the whole butty. In that case please talk through your needs with us.
  • No smoking is permitted inside the boats, although, with the agreement of your fellow guests you are welcome to smoke in the well decks of either boat.

How, where and when do I join the boats?

  • Detailed joining instructions and a map will be sent with your final invoice.
  • Our mobile telephone can be used to tell us of any last minute travel problems or for urgent calls. Please give us a number to contact you in the week prior to your arrival just in case we have any last minute problems.
  • On arrival you can claim your cabin any time after 4.30 p.m. If you wish to explore, then it is often possible to drop off your bags earlier by prior arrangement. Dinner will be served at 7.30 p.m., however we will not normally move off until the next morning, and your dinner can be kept warm if you are delayed!
  • You will normally depart by 9.30 a.m. Often bags can be held in our store room to be collected later in the day if you wish to take more time at our final destination, again by prior arrangement.

I am not very mobile, is this holiday for me?

We welcome guests with some physical disabilities, and in fact these holidays are ideal for those who can not walk far since all facilities are within a few yards and you can join in by just sitting and watching life pass by.. But remember that ...

  • There is not enough room to use a wheelchair or a walking frame on the boats although there is always a wall close enough for support at all times.
  • You will need to be able to climb, very slowly if need be and with ample willingly offered help, up two steps and down five steps to get onto the boats at the start of your holiday. If required you can reserve one of the cabins on the same boat as the lounge and dinning room so you do not have to cross between boats during your holiday.
  • We can fit a small folding wheelchair or mobility scooter into storage in the engine room to be used ashore. (Those made to fit into car boots are suitable.) But many towpaths are not suitable for pushing a wheelchair along, it would only really be usable in a town or village away from the canal.
  • When you join and leave us we can position the boat so you only have a few yards to walk from your car/taxi to the boats. (If this isessential pleaselet us know before-hand.)
  • We cannot offer assistance with dressing or toilets/showering, and in fact the cabins, except for the twin cabin, do not have the room for a helper. However no one will rush you, you can do things slowly at your own pace.

If you are uncertain please phone us to discuss what you require. It should be possible to arrange for you to come and look over the boats before you book to settle any questions.

N.B. We have had guests arrive on cruthches, in wheelchairs, on a mobility scooter and lead by their guide dog! They have all enjoyed an adventure holiday not normally available to somone restricted in mobility.

 

What will a typical day be like?

  • 8.00 We will wake you up with a cup of tea or coffee.

    8.30 Cereals, toast, fruit juice and a wide choice of cooked breakfasts available, daily papers too, when possible. At Breakfast we talk about our route for the day and what to look out for.

    9.30 We move off. You can ride and watch the scenery slowly pass by, perhaps with some music or with the help of a book. If you are more energetic you can help work locks or walk along the towpath. The choice is yours, you are on holiday! We will do the work.

    11.00 A cup of coffee, (or tea or chocolate …) and biscuits will be brought to you wherever you are.

    12.30 We stop for at least an hour for lunch and to allow you to explore. We may serve Soup with bread rolls, or our own Pizza, all home made. Followed with freshly baked cake and fruit.

    2.00 We continue leisurely on our way. The whole essence of the holiday is in the travelling rather than rushing to arrive.

    4.00 Afternoon tea, (or coffee … ) and cake.

    5.30 We moor up for the night to give you the chance to explore the area, carry on with your book, have a quick sleep or a refreshing shower!

    7.30 Dinner. Many guest are pleasantly surprised by the variety and quality of the food we serve freshly cooked each day.

    9.00 You could have a drink from our bar, or go to the local pub, sit and read, listen to music or watch a DVD. With two separate lounges, and your cabin which is always available, the choice is yours.

 

 

 

 

 

There are foods I do not eat, is this a problem?

Because of restricted space unfortunately we can not offer you a choice of menu, so we ask you on the booking form to list any dietary requirements and any foods you strongly dislike. We will not accept the booking unless we are sure we can cope. If we are uncertain we will ring you to clarify points, and of course you are welcome to ring us to resolve any such uncertainties.

What sort of food do you serve for dinner?

We serve no package meals and we do not have a microwave on the boats!

  • The starter might be Brittany Mushrooms, home made Pate or Stuffed Peppers.
  • Main courses include Chicken in Red Wine, home made Steak and Kidney pudding, Stuffed Trout, Drunken Pork Chops….. all served with vegetables cooked in imaginative ways such as Broccoli Au Gratin, Welsh Mashed Parsnip, Glazed Carrots, Duchess Potatoes etc.
    Included is a glass of wine or beer.
  • We then serve two sweets, one hot such as Baked Jam Sponge, Spotted Dick or Brown Betty, the other cold such as Marinated Pears, Sherry Trifle, etc.
  • We finish with fresh coffee and a choice of teas, some Cheeses and, of course, after eight mints.

Visit Britain says in their independent assessment "The meals have a wide choice of quality items, freshly cooked from good quality ingredients."

 

 

Can I come on my own or do I have to book the whole boat?

  • Most people come on there own or with one or two friends. We then continue to take bookings from other people to fill the boat for that cruise. However we will still cruise even if the boat is not full. Your holiday is safe.
  • It is also possible to charter the boats for your family or friends. There are several benefits when you do this, see the Routes and Prices Booklet.

How can I really be sure what it's like?

It is only human to want to know what the boats are like and to be sure that you will enjoy your cruise. There are four ways you can ascertain this;-

  • You are very welcome to come and have a look over the boats at any time. Just give us a phone call to find out where we will be. Obviously on a change over day or in the winter we have more time to talk to you, but during the summer you can meet other guests.
  • However if you can not come along, then you can be assured that an inspector from 'Visit Britain' has given the boats a very strict examination and she says we met their standards and has awarded us four stars. You can read all about this on our Quality Standard page.
  • You can also read the comments previous guests have made. If you visit us ask to look at the Visitor's Book. Or read a selection here.
  • In 2008 we had a correspondent for the Sunday Times on the boats. Read what he wroteabout us here.

 

Go and look at a sample menu from one week.

Read, "Dream to Reality", the story of the setting up of Reed Boats.

 

If you have any questions then do ring us on 07977 229103
or email us at martinreed@reedboats.co.uk

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