RBOA Initiative to encourage mutual respect among waterway users.

The Residential Boat Owners’ Association (RBOA) has developed a voluntary Code of Good Practice document  (See attached).  The Association encourages all its members, along with other interested waterway users, whether on water or on land, to consider others, and take responsibility for their actions, so hopefully making our waterways a place for all to enjoy.

We often read or hear about a lack of mutual understanding, both between boaters themselves and between them and other users of our waterways, sometimes leading to one group blaming another for some of the unrest on the waterways.  There is also a perceived lack of respect for our environment, both the natural environment of our canals and rivers, and also the built environment, which encompasses a great deal of the heritage of our waterways.

As in many walks of life, it is often the voice of the minority which attracts most attention, rather than the vast number of waterway users who enjoy our waterways, and do so in a responsible manner, not causing a nuisance to others, and respecting their surroundings.

In an effort to encourage its members and other users to act responsibly by setting a good example to others, and show them due consideration, the Residential Boat Owners’ Association has drawn up this brief Code of Good Practice, which, as well as going some way to addressing the above points, encourages those with many years’ experience on the waterways to share their knowledge and skills with newcomers. It should not be forgotten that however many years we have spent around our waterways, there was a time when we knew nothing about them, and welcomed a bit of friendly advice to help make life on or around the water easier.

This initiative is supported by the Avon Navigation Trust, Canal & River Trust, Environment Agency, Association of Lea Cruising Clubs, Inland Waterways Association, Waterways Chaplaincy and Waterways World.

Readers can find a copy of the Code and register their support for it by going to www.rboa.org.uk  and clicking on the “CODE OF GOOD PRACTICE Register Your Support” button at the bottom right hand corner of the Home Page. Just complete the very brief form at the end of the page to register your support for the Code.