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Mr Kennison - Caldon
Alice | June 2014 | Caldon
Good afternoon Karen,
It’s difficult to believe that it is only a week since we handed Alice Elizabeth back to you after a wonderful trip on the Caldon.
We would like to thank you and your team for a really enjoyable and memorable holiday. Our final night spent in the yard was almost as interesting as our cruise, we felt as though we were members of a hidden village – you do seem to attract an interesting group of customers. Having the privilege of seeing you undock and dock the boats on Friday morning was a fabulous bonus.
We feel that you run a very special business and we wanted to tell you that we greatly appreciated it, and all the hard work that goes into making it so.
You mentioned that your husband was recovering from an operation. Please give him our best wishes for his recovery, we look forward to meeting him next time we hire a boat from you.
Coral Carter - Trent & Mersey
Martha | June 2014 | Trent & Mersey
Freedom of Choice
Once again we had a fantastic time on "Martha Ginger". The weather was good up to the Wednesday of half term,then we had two days which were overcast but that is part & parcel of a canal holiday. We have been keen boaters over the years (36 yrs), my children grew up with being cold & wet, now the next generation are learning the ropes (no pun intended). We have been coming to Stone in Staffordshire for the last ten yrs & we still get the same friendly reception from all the staff as we did when we first met. If you want to get away from the normal holiday ( TV,radio,newspapers & the fast pace of normal life), then this holiday is not for you,unless you want these things which are available on all of "The Family of Ginger Boats". Come with an open mind & try something new, you never know you might become hooked.
Malcolm Smith - Trent & Mersey Canal and The Caldon Canal - Lovely
Martha | May 2014 | Trent & Mersey and Caldon Canals
This is a long review aimed at saying thank you to Canal Cruising Ltd and also hoping to influence others that may want to experience the Caldon Canal from this ideal base in Stone.
Just had an amazing holiday on NB Martha and it has to be said “This was 70’ of perfection”
We visited the Caldon canal so your base at Stone was an ideal starting point. Approaching the conurbation known as Stoke on Trent as the canal changes from rural to urban is an interesting experience and one soon learned the area was built around the canal. There is a mixture of old and new. There are some derelict buildings alongside the canal that in their heyday would have used the canal as their preferred mode of transport. This all adds to the experience and helps you appreciate the past as you cruise along at a gentle three of four miles an hour
The Caldon Canal is fascinating with its engineering excellence and its rural scenery not forgetting the places along the way from pubs and shops to the remote Consall Forge with The Black Lion sitting there offering a warm welcome for all. You really experience the feeling that you are in the middle of nowhere. On to Froghall and the Uttoxeter Canal basin you cannot fail to be impressed with the way in which it has been landscaped and restored. The Leek arm is a gentle cruise that takes you to the edge of this quaint old town that has everything you could need, albeit a bit of a walk into the centre. Don’t miss the arm because the canal is quiet and well worth the detour from the main line as it meanders along to its feeder from the nearby Rudyard reservoir
Our boat NB Martha had everything we could wish for and was more than comfortable. A daunting 70’ long at first sight handled like a dream and the proximity of tiller and throttle controls made for a comfortable position for the steerer where you could hold both controls at the same time. The engine never skipped a beat. The equipment supplied is first class and it’s no exaggeration to say the galley provided everything we needed for eating aboard (we supplied the food though!) Decent sized fridge and a fan assisted oven and grill make the full sized cooker a pleasure to use. Beds were very comfortable and the roomy showers ensured a feeling of freshness as we sat in the comfortable saloon area. Seating at the front of the boat with half opening doors added the finishing touch.
Why did we choose this firm, easy really. It’s location on the Trent & Mersey made it an idea starting point but of course a bit of research showed us it provides diesel inclusive, where many of the other firms charge extra for this. It’s quite frankly a rip off to do this to people; in our view. These were the reasons for booking with this firm last year. This year’s holiday was based on the same reason plus the knowledge that they know what the customer wants and make sure they get it
Canal holidays are not for everyone and if you are in a hurry this may not be the holiday for you. If, on the other hand, you enjoy the solitude of mooring in the countryside or perhaps close to the little village pub then this really is your holiday. There is an element of physical exercise and plenty of opportunity for relaxation. This holiday will give the novice much confidence as they negotiate the challenge of life on the canals. Do it once and you will be smitten
Thank you Karen and all at Canal Cruising Ltd Stone
Mason - 4 Counties Ring and Bugsworth Basin - Lovely
Patricia | May 2014 | 4 Counties Ring and Busgsworth Basin - Lovely
We had a lovely trip despite the weather. The boat was clean well designed, Had trouble with the toilet and Oven, quickly fixed, Staff very friendly and very helpful. Going back for another trip in September
Dave and Jill - East Anglia
Rosemary | Spring
We booked with Canal Cruising as they offered the best value for money and gave a 10% discount for members of CAMRA if you book direct, even if you take off the joining fee it's a great saving!
We arrived and were parked and introduced to our boat within minutes; our boat was a 2/3 berth called Rosemary. We were shown all of the boat features and controls, ticking each on a form to say that we had understood it; it's a little daunting but the very nice man that showed us was very patient. We were then shown how to steer, 'park' and taken through 2 locks with detailed instruction; once happy we were set free.
It took a couple of days to feel confident, particularly stopping on the right bank as the speed control is on the left, but this gradually became easier. Reversing was daunting and only when we got back to the yard we saw that you have little control reversing so the trick is to reverse and if you need to control direction put it in forward very briefly to correct direction then back in reverse. My partner was not happy steering the boat so she ended up doing most of the lock work, and some of the gates can take some effort to lift. That said there are usually helping hands about.
The sense of achievement and enjoyment after the week was immense, I think we will do it agaan; I can only hope that if we go to another part of the country we can find a boat yard as good as good as Canal Cruising. Whilst on the water we met a number of people who had great things to say about them and nothing bad; this was not true for other companies, particularly the dark royal ones.
We met more than the usual amount of lovely people, with very few of the type you meet anywhere else in life.
In summary - If you are thinking about a boating holiday go for it, take your time, don't be put off by the initial challenge and use Canal Cruising for a great experience!
We will look back on this as a great life experience with some memorable incidents and great pleasure, and Jill is fitter from the lock work!
Mr and Mrs Rawlings - Carey Ginger
Carey | Winter/Spring
We've done a dozen cruises and this narrowboat is the best yet. Really clean and great attention to detail - toilet rolls, liquid hand soap, decent size teapot and many other features. We knew it was likely to be cold at this time of year so the central heating was very necessary and the wood burner was a touch of luxury that we loved. The kitchen was really well equipped with plenty of crockery. The beds were very comfortable and there was plenty of storage. All in all a lovely boat, highly recommended.
Mr A Donkin
Carey | Sept 2012
Having previously hired boats from Harry Machin of Holidays Afloat in Market Drayton we were determined to find a Hire Company which was still independent and thus offered the same level of service to which I was accustomed. Holidays Afloat recommended us to Canal Cruising in Stone. Our high expectations of a Family operated Company were more than met. From the simplicity of booking via their website to the personal service given when they were telephoned to confirm pick up details, nothing could have been easier, businesslike or more friendly. We had seen in Magazine reviews the concerns expressed in some quarters of the lack of adequate training given to those hiring Canal Boats. Karen could not have been more helpful or informative as she carefully took myself and my partner through the workings of a lock pointing out throughout the training session the possible pitfalls and dangers of not being careful and attentive at all times when working a lock. Only when she was completely satisfied that we knew what we were doing did she let us leave on our holiday. The boat itself was a joy to handle and was very well equipped in all ways. Very clean and well furnished it was truly a home from home. We would have no hesitation in recommending Canal Cruising, Stone to either veterans or novices on the Inland Waterways.
Lucy | Sept 2012 | South on the Trent & Mersey
Hired Lucy Ginger. Have you enjoyed your holiday - good. Cleanliness - very good. Design & Accommodation - very-good. Instruction/handover - good. Reliability - Throttle cable repair needed - Good response to call out. Staff - Good. Website - Good. Thank you for a lovely holiday and your patients at the boat yard.
Rosemary | Sept 2012 | Cheshire Ring
Thanks for the friendly reception. We had a delightful lazy holiday in a clean and well furbished narrowboat, just first - rate for the two of us. I have recommended your company, and our booking for next year is on its way.
Maria | 2012 | Cauldon Canal
Hired the narrow boat "Maria" in August 2012.We had a friendly greeting on arrival, shown to our boat which was beautifully presented, lovely and clean. We were given plenty of time to put our things on board and we were impressed with the efficiency of the run through of how the boat worked. Thanks had a great time. will definitely go again.
Patricia | 2013 April | Caldon
Have a very good Holiday despite being cold the sun came out. The boat was very clean, The Staff and the hand over very good,found the web site to be very informative. The boat was very comfortable.
Olivia | Easter 2013 | Marple
Just returned from a holiday on Olivia Ginger. She was clean and well designed. The staff, instruction and web site are good. Administration following our booking was excellent!!! One of the mattresses needs upgrading/replacing and informed the yard. Other than that a very enjoyable holiday and would recommend your Company. Thank You.
Agnes | Day Hire April 2013 | Sandon
We had a very enjoyable day out, good service and induction. The boat was very clean well designed and this website was good.
Rosemary | 2013 April | Four Counties Ring
Excellent for the price. Would recommend you highly. A lot of thought has gone into your boats which helped us have a perfect holiday. The boat was very clean, the instruction was excellent. Would have prefered cottong ropes. but understand the nylon ropes are practical on a hire boat. Many thanks.
Mr & Mrs D Brown
Carey | Summer | Black Country Ring
Just spent two weeks on Carey Ginger doing this ring boat good clean and comfortable. Had to make a detour due to Wolverhampton locks being out we went down to Stourbridge well worth the extra mills and locks brilliant only one thing wrong i lost my I phone in blowers green locks [if found please return]. Would recommend this boatyard to anyone Karen and Peter are great to deal with, staff always helpful and pleasant if you have not done this kind of holiday before they will give you training.We have already booked for next year.
Derek and Gill