There were 88 responses to the following questions:
Do you agree that the Narrowboats offer an opportunity for all citizens to explore and understand the Nottingham waterways?
Yes (80) 92% - No (7) 8%
Do you agree that the narrowboats should transfer to an external charitable trust to allow this service to further develop?
Yes (79) 91% - No (8) 9%
There was overwhelming positive support for this proposal with many agreeing that funding along with additional opportunities would increase.
For instance, one comment depicted how the move to a charitable trust will ‘enable external funding to support their activities and provide more opportunities for schools’. Another response identified that changing it to a charitable trust could open up more opportunities for other users in Nottingham/Nottinghamshire to access the boats.
Voluntary action group Click Nottingham stated that they ‘would love to see this service continue and grow’.
The Canal & River Trust have welcomed this proposal and said that they support plans to allow the scheme to develop further as they believe the narrowboats provide a ‘valuable and unique opportunity for all in Nottingham to experience the waterways’.
One response did stress that ‘the narrowboats need people with vision and expertise to develop this part of the City’s assets’ which can arise from a charitable trust.
The consultation also highlights that the narrowboats remain available as a service to the underprivileged children and youth. One teacher, for instance commented that the ‘experience helped students of all ages get involved and develop their confidence through teamwork’. Furthermore a parent expressed that their ‘children had a great experience’.
The narrowboats themselves have been described as a ‘great asset to the City’ thus, a respondent stated that ‘to lose them would be a travesty and if the way forward is a charitable trust then they are 110% behind it’.
One of the most encouraging aspects of the consultation was to raise the awareness of the public to the narrowboat project. There was even one offer to volunteer.
There were some less positive responses, which largely focused on the lack of detail available. This will be clarified in the report recommending the transfer to an as yet undetermined Trust.