Monday 19 April 2010

Stop-press - Volcanic Ash Cloud Fails to Stop Narrowboat Movements

By Our Scottish Correspondant. The journey of NB Dalriada from Gloucestershire to Kirkintilloch has been successfully completed despite the threat of volcanic ash in the diesel air intakes of the 17.8m long inland waterways vessel. The skipper, Andrew Swift, said, 'We were rather concerned that the Icelandic ash cloud might disrupt the diesel's performance on the tidal River Carron, a critical part of the journey if a trip out to sea via the Forth Estuary was to be avoided. We ignored all specialist advice and went for it, and suffered no permanent damage other than to the whisky supplies on board.'

The journey of this six-year old Pinder-built barge required a fully-integrated transportation strategy, with water, crane, lorry, car, bicycle & train all being used for different phases of the movements. Whilst swinging the 16 tonne vessel in the air near a yacht on blocks, crane operator Barry was heard to say, '@#%X me, that was close! I'm glad my insurance is paid up.'

NB Dalriada will now remain in newly completed Southbank Marina in the up-and-coming area of Kirkintilloch. This base is in close proximity to Glasgow, the Clyde coast, Falkirk and the Union Canal to Edinburgh. Crew and visitors alike can enjoy the local flora and fauna and rides on the extraordinary Falkirk Wheel.


  1. Dear Andrew,

    Welcome to the Scottish Lowland Canals. I saw your news in the on-line Inspires.

    As another Piskie boater, I hope to meet up with you some time. NB Jessica is moored at Ratho, about 15 hours cruising from Kirkintilloch. We only go through there about every other year, but this is one of the scheduled years!

    God give you peace!

    [Liza Coates is skipper of the Narrowboat Jessica which is dedicated to rest and refreshment, conversation and encounter]

  2. Dear Liza - sorry to take so long to post! Thanks for the greetings - we will stop and check NB Jessica when we pass, to see if you are at home!

  3. Hi Andrew. Interested to see Dalriada is moored at Kirkie. We're just up the road from the Marina in Lenzie (just around the corner from St Cyprians).

    (Lay Reader at St James the Less, Bishopbriggs)

  4. Yes, it looks a good spot, for a mix of practical and impractical reasons! I was at St Cyprian's this morning (my last in my gap between congregations) maybe I'll pop by your way on another Dalriada break later this year!

    Oh, it's good to have broadband again, after 9 days disconnected!