Finding a Mooring

We had mixed feelings about where to moor our new boat. Where we were before at Bugbrooke was in the middle of a long enough pound that you could have a weekend away without operating any locks, although venturing further afield meant to had quite a bit of work to do, either going North or South. It was a an hour’s drive from home, which made a casual visit to do some work of just check up on the boat a two hour round trip.

There were moorings closer to home, but the price rose as you got further south. If we found somwhere very close to home in Berkhamsted, most journeys would require a lot of lock work.

Our initial decision was to moor at Gayton Marina. ABC Leisure, offered free short term moorings at their other marinas, and there was one at Grove Lock that was attractive. They also publically posted their fees, which helped. We wern’t sure about commiting to a full year, however, because of another reason.

When we shared locks on our L&L cruise, the couple who had given us some great advise told us about being a memeber of a boat club – not only were the moorings good value, but there were reciprical arrangements between member clubs of the AWCC for short term mooring while crusing. Even before we thought we would be buying a boat in 2021, we started to look at clubs near us. The only one that was really suitable was on the Aylesbury arm, which was 14 narrow locks from Marsworth on the main line. We decided to join as associated members anyway, as it was cheap and they looked like a friendly bunch.

Within a week of informing the ACS that we had bought a boat, and just after we had booked into Gayton for a month, they offered us a mooring. It was a 3 month commitment, and would save us about £1k a year in fees. What’s more they had a slipway, wet dock and workshops for the use of members. We aimed to have the boat there by mid-August, where it would be about 25 minutes drive from home.