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New T&Cs for CRT boat licences

25 May 2021

The Canal & River Trust has updated its terms and conditions for private boat licences, to address nine points that it felt were causing difficulties. In the process, the trust says it has tried to make the document simpler to understand. 

The nine changes set out:

1. Requirements for boaters to travel on a journey while away from a home mooring (to better manage ‘ghost moorings’/moorings of convenience where a boat spends extended periods on a small part of the network away from its home mooring)

2. Increased obligations of larger boats to avoid causing navigation difficulties on smaller waterways

3. Consequences for making false declarations when licensing

4. Obligations of the public for better behaviour towards CRT staff

5. Additional requirements to ensure boaters have adequate insurance

6. Responsibilities of boat-owners for Boat Safety Scheme certification

7. Clarification about the conditions in which CRT can enforce the terms of boat licences and terminate them

8. Extra information about the trust's legal position regarding refunds

9. The need for boaters to supply better information about change of ownership.

The amendments follow a 12-week consultation that garnered considerable opposition in some quarters. 

A significant change is that the new terms separate the Standard Canal and River Licence into two new categories: Pleasure Boat Licence (those which have a home mooring), and Continuous Cruiser Licence.

At least one boating organisation argued that this separation would now make it easier for CRT to charge a higher fee for continuous cruisers, something which was proposed in 2008 by the old British Waterways but dropped following opposition.

The trust says it received widespread support, with 78% of respondents agreeing across all nine proposals, ranging from 63% to 88% across individual proposals. Around 10% of CRT licence holders responded to the consultation. 

The full consultation report is available here, while the new terms & conditions can be found here.

Boat licensing officer.jpg
The new licence terms aim, among other things, to clarify the mutual respect required between the public and CRT towpath staff and volunteers.


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