Hundred-year-old boats sail on Monmouthshire canal

Free Press Series: Members of the Thames Traditional Boat Society have planned a canal rowing boat trip leaving from Pontymoile Marina in Pontypool.  Pictured  ready to go in their Skiff called Russell, are Sheila and David Chalk from Reading. (6511835) Members of the Thames Traditional Boat Society have planned a canal rowing boat trip leaving from Pontymoile Marina in Pontypool. Pictured ready to go in their Skiff called Russell, are Sheila and David Chalk from Reading. (6511835)

NON-ENGINE-POWERED boats from the Thames Traditional Boat Society were brought by road from London to the Monmouthshire and Brecon Canal at Pontymoile this weekend.

Every year the Society, which has around 400 members, organises a three-day cruise on waterways around the UK. Some of the boats were built as long ago as 1895. Ten boats were sailing the whole length of the Monmouthshire to Brecon and Canal this weekend with a stop at Goytre Wharf.

Around 25 people came along for the cruise, some camping overnight on board the boats which run from people power alone, either by rowing or, occasionally, by someone dragging them along the waterway.

Graham Hubbard, who organised the cruise and is editor of the society magazine, said: “I’m really enjoying Sunday with Saturday having been a complete washout although we carried on in the rain. We’re thoroughly enjoying the countryside and a really beautiful canal.”

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