Soundings

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From the Tiller

by Charles Foster

Another new year is before us, which I trust will bring us a little better weather than we had in 2019. This New Year is a very exciting and busy one for the RBOA in our quest to improve our visibility and usefulness to both existing and new members who wish to enjoy a lifestyle afloat, whether on the inland waterways or on the coast.

The main areas that we hope to develop over the next year are:

  • Online membership and a new improved website with a greater information base for members to tap into.
  • Greater use of the reinvented Facebook page. It’s use is growing by the day, and offers a useful communication method to update members on waterways-related activity, or lack of it, in your respective areas.
  • Personally, I am working on the transition of the RBOA into a registered charity, which will:
    • position us to be more effective in dealing with the problems that face those who
      live afloat;
    • provide potential access to increased funding, meaning that we can argue our causes
      in a more forceful way (maybe even through the courts if necessary), so becoming
      a more powerful pressure group within our environs.

Another area of progress is in the production of case studies and thoughts on our cradle to grave philosophy. Help from members sharing their personal experiences is much appreciated.

2020 will see us again at Crick, where we will be having two stands, one inside the Boating Marquee, as previously, plus an outside venue. Watch this space to see how and why it will work for us in the promotion of our association.

We will continue to forge new / improved links with other boating and social organisations to get a better feel of how we can assist those who wish to enjoy a lifestyle afloat, be it full time or on a leisure footing.

Now is a great time to get more involved with your association. Any little bit of help from members is much appreciated. I would like to take this opportunity to thank all those who have shared their experiences so far, and look forward to hearing from more of you.

One last point – I have put myself forward for possible election to become a member of CRT Council. Were I to be elected, this I feel would greatly help in positioning the RBOA in policy decisions. Your support in the elections would be much appreciated. This is one more way in which we could have input into the running of the waterways, and if I were to be successful, should mean our greater say in the future of our waterways.

Best wishes as we look forward to an exciting and happy New Year.


The RBOA Newsletter, Soundings, is sent free to members six times a year.

It is also available to non-members for £2 (+ £1.20 P&P).