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26 May

South Pennine Ring

Sussex April 24 - May 6 2024
Posted by Dave Spoonley and Iain Clough

Today we have begun a 2-week long canal spectacular. Normally our canal trips are a week long .. however, this year's is 2 weeks long as we are doing the South Pennine Ring...

30 June

Voyage to Sheffield

Lincoln May 31 - June 14 2021
Posted by Andrew Bradley

The call of the cut is very strong and although my wife and I are both 78 this year we were drawn to an area of the country we had not cruised before as we set off from Sowerby Bridge on 31st May 2021 headed for Sheffield.

There was an even stronger reason...

15 July

An Irish view

Cornwall September 22 - 29 2018
Posted by Terry Needham

A lovely report on a one-way trip via the HNC from the Summer 2020 edition of Waterways News, the magazine of Inland Waterways Association Ireland.

06 August

Diary of a one way trip via Leeds

Dorset July 22 - 29
Posted by Tim Overfield

This, our second trip with Shire, was a one-way trip from Barnoldswick to Sowerby Bridge via the Leeds to Liverpool canal, Aire & Calder and Calder & Hebble Navigations. For me the challenges were the numerous staircase locks and the river navigations never having attempted either before in all my years of canal trips. As it happened (spoiler alert) these were no issue whatsoever, the challenges came in different forms…
See this author's previous blog

18 June

Swan at night

Rutland June 14 - 17
Posted by Andrew Mounter

I’ve just returned to work today after a wonderful weekend on one of your boats out of Barnoldswick. Me and my brother took our parents to celebrate their 80th birthdays. None of us had been on a narrow boat before and we all ended up asking ourselves the same question - ‘why on earth have we never done this before ?!‘...

18 April

leeds Basin

Norfolk April 5 - 15
Posted by Adrian Nockles

...Adrian and Anna and three dogs on “Norfolk” and Neil and Karen on “Cambridge”, we had planned to do the trip together as it made the large canal locks easier...

12 Sept

Tricia Duckworth

Cornwall August 23 - September 1
Posted by Trisha Duckworth

Dear Susan,
Following our trip in Cornwall last month, I have written resumé of our trip. I like reading this sort of report before I go on a canal holiday.
If you would like to use it on your website, you are very welcome.
Trisha Duckworth


Where can you go, to see a lock with the gates open both ends? (ed.)

24 August

Jasper's weekend

Sussex June 8 - 11
Posted by Jasper

Thanks for our amazing holiday on Sussex. We saw ducks!  And found swings!   

I really enjoyed climbing around the sofa cushions and peering out of the windows. (Mum says that she's very impressed with how well attached your curtain rail wires are.) I enjoyed my baths in the big deep shower bottom too. 

Your idea of making one of the single bunks into a cot was good, but I'm a bit of a Houdini so got to share one of the the lovely big beds with mum instead.  The boat was great to explore. There were lots of clever hidey hole cupboards for storing things, or crawling into.

When I got bored, or needed a nap, I travelled alongside the boat in my pushchair, which kept all the crew fit too.

Hope to see you again when I'm bigger,
(age 9 months)

30 May

The Bowie's

Norfolk May 25 - 28
Posted by Penny Bowie

Dear Susan,
We had a really lovely few days over the bank holiday weekend.
The sun came out after the terrible weather on Friday.
Geoff was great giving us the low down about our boat.
The dogs struggled to find their sea-legs but we all had fun!
Many thanks again.

07 May

The South Pennine Ring April/May 2018 or how I learned to love the long-throw windlass.

Lincoln April 20 - May 4
Posted by Steph Green

....As always we would like to give our thanks to Susan and Nigel, all the Shire Crew (they make good tea too!) Canal and River Trust for all their help, The Crew of Cornwall and all the strangers who have showed utmost kindness in helping us.

Steph, Jus and Ellie (The Blind Dog)

07 Aug

Paddle gear

Dorset July 17-24
Posted by Ross Morrell

Hi Susan, Hi Nigel,
Just a thank you again for a super trip on Dorset from Barnoldswick to SB.

So, another year on and we returned for a different route....

Ross Morrell

22 July

South Pennine Ring June 2017 Diary

Huntingdon June 10-24
Posted by Jeff Kempster

Arrived Sowerby Bridge around 12 noon - dropped off some bags and went shopping...

29 April

April Adventures with Norfolk

Norfolk April 7-17
Posted by Steph Green

Sowerby Bridge to Barnoldswick.
81 miles. 81 locks.
A lovely Spring day and super-excitement is bubbling up...

Steph Green

21 Oct

Autumn 2016 Norfolk goes home

Norfolk October 3-14
Posted by Steph Green

Barnoldswick to Sowerby Bridge.
81 miles. 81 locks.
This journey has everything....

Steph Green

14 Sep


Somerset June 10-24
Posted by Harry Glover

Dear Nigel and Susan
Here are my comments on our Barnoldswick-to-Liverpool-and-back canal trip in June......

Harry Glover

08 Aug


Gloucester July 8-15
Posted by Andy Cripps

Just to thank you for the excellent service.....

Andy Cripps

29 Jul

Our Holiday - Huntingdon - HNC

Huntingdon July 2-9
Posted by Ross Morrell

Hi Susan and Nigel,
I wanted to drop you a quick note to let you know once again how much we enjoyed....

Ross Morrell

08 Jul

Spring weekend

Stafford June 18-25
Posted by Michael Fulford

Hi Nigel and Susan,
Just to say we enjoyed our week on the Stafford....

Michael & Kathryn Fulford

22 Jun

Spring weekend

Somerset May 16-20
Posted by Dorothy Smith

Dear Nigel and Susan,
I feel that I have to write to you and inform you of the most wonderful experiences we all had on our narrow boat holiday with you. The boat was superb. Everything on board....

Tyzacks and Smiths

12 Apr

Spring weekend

Somerset April 1-4
Posted by Eric Bridgstock

Our family of two “60+” and three “30+” had a wonderful weekend on Somerset – such an advance on the last boat we hired in 1979!  Central heating, 3-pin plugs, shower, electric flush toilets, and such a quiet engine....

Eric Bridgstock

12 Apr

Churches, churches

Gloucester March 28 - April 4
Posted by Peter Jones

Our week on the canal was wonderful! We did not quite get as far as Apperley Bridge – but that is because of the time we spent in Skipton and Saltaire (the furthest place that we reached), as well as visiting several churches, such as at Gargrave and Kildwick. On the second day (the Tuesday) we managed to experience snow, hail, rain and sunshine – all on one day, but fortunately, after that, the weather calmed down and it was mostly dry, sometimes sunny. (picture; Holy Trinity, Skipton)

Peter Jones

02 Apr

Guinea pigs

Stafford March 19-26
Posted by Julian Howes

Thank you so much for the trouble you went to ensuring that our holiday still went ahead. We had a wonderful time ...

Julian Howes and Alison Plaisted

07 Oct

Such a fantastic time

Somerset July 24-31
Posted by Gillian McElroy

In July 2015 we embarked rather nervously on our first canal holiday...

Gillian McElroy

05 Oct

5 Lads - 1 Boat

Somerset October 2-5
Posted by Ben Ellis

What an absolutely superb weekend we have just had...

Ben Ellis

22 Sept

A 40th birthday

Stafford May 23-30
Posted by Douglas Aberdeen

....Thanks again for an amazing holiday and your stellar service!

D&J Aberdeen.

21 August

Diary of a one way trip via Rochdale

Cornwall August 1-8
Posted by Tim Overfield

Tim Overfield gives useful advice, including intriguing places to eat, for new customers planning the rewarding one way trip via the Rochdale Canal.

6 July

Thanks for a brilliant 10 days on a fantastic boat!

Rutland June 19-29
Posted by Nick Ferrar

Thank you Shire Cruisers for a superb ten days afloat. We previously attempted the South Pennine ring in 2007 but failed due to lock damage on the Ashton Canal, this time we succeeded and what a trip!......
Nick Ferrar

28 June

Sunlit Gorges and Fluffy Goslings

Hereford June 1-5
Posted by Elizabeth Guinness

Drifting through sunlit gorges watching fluffy goslings guarded by anxious Canadian parents! Then ......
Elizabeth Guinness

22 June


Hereford June 15-19
Posted by Sue Constable

Just a quick message to say Thank you so much for the help you gave us with my in-laws for our trip last week.
Sue (snr) and Peter introduced me to canal holidays when I married into the family some 30 odd years ago....

19 June

Better late than never!

Oxford June 5-12
Posted by Stephen Roberts

Kate Hills

Can I just say we had a wonderful time and we were really impressed with your company. The boat was clean and in good condition and we had a wonderful greeting and briefing from Brian giving us the knowledge and confidence to enjoy our holiday to the full.
I would heartily recommend Shire Cruisers to anyone and you'll definitely be seeing us again sometime in the future for another holiday on your wonderful boats.

Thanks again
Steve Roberts and Kate Hills

20 May

nb Warwick 8th-15 May 2015

Posted by Steph Green

Arriving at the picturesque Lower Park Marina on time, despite the usual getting lost in Skipton detour, the day isn't too bad, our handover is quick and concise and away we go West.
But the skies were greying, it was beginning to drizzle....

Until next time!
Steph xxx

16 Nov

Our fab weekend away

Posted by Alison Wharton

Thank you for making our weekend special. We only booked the weekend before and have never been on a narrowboat before.
The boat Cambridge had everything inside we could have possibly wanted. We will definitely booking again

Kind regards
Alison Wharton

26 Oct

Thank you!

Posted by Mary Kipling

We had a grand, if occasionally challenging, time bringing Warwick back through Manchester to Sowerby Bridge, and the feeling of achievement is immense. And now we've completed all the Pennine Rings...

17 Sept

A bunch of Yanks cruise the South Pennine Ring - August 2014

Buckingham & Hereford
Posted by Brian Shaw

Cruising the South pennine Ring

Thanks, Susan and Nigel, for providing great boats and booking perfect weather!...

9 Sept

Comments on South Pennine Ring by Fiona and Roland Rawlings June 2014

Posted by Fiona Rawlings

Leaving Sowerby Bridge with a crew of four adults early on a Saturday morning we planned to do the South Pennine Ring in a clockwise direction. Although we knew we could complete the ring in two weeks to take it at a more leisurely pace we decided to take three weeks. The challenge would be 197 locks and 75 miles...

6 July

Tour de France

Leicester, Oxford and Westmorland
Posted by Nigel Stevens

The Grand Départ went with a real bang, with huge crowds along the canal, in Hebden Bridge, in Mytholmroyd and up Cragg Vale - right along the route. The Tour de France cyclists and officials were quite overwhelmed....

Picture courtesy CRT

21 June

A Voyage through the Pennines

Posted by Charles Stride

IWA Ipswich Branch Chairman's Cruise 2014

An impressive photo montage of a journey across the Huddersfield Narrow in April.

12 June

Feedback re Worcester 19 May 2014 - 02 June 2014

Posted by Patricia Faraday

One thing we did not do before we booked our trip was research the Rochdale Canal. We learnt that it was the highest, the deepest and the widest on the English Canal system, but only after the first 36 locks. I also realised, at the Summit, that I had in fact walked from Sowerby Bridge to the Summit as the locks were all so close together...

02 June

Our Fantastic Holiday

Posted by Nicola Black

Just wanted to send a quick email to say how much we enjoyed our holiday on Leicester last week.

The weather on our start day was horrendous but....

27 May

Maiden voyage

Posted by Ian Jackson

Holiday lived up to all expectations, as ever. Taking 'Rutland' out on her maiden voyage made it extra special and being trusted with a brand new craft made us feel privileged.

Ian & Gillian Jackson

21 May

Another great holiday...

Posted by Steph Green

Thank you so much for another great holiday. We had a fantastic time on The Leeds and Liverpool. We went East as far as Saltaire and then came back West up to the mouth of Foulridge tunnel before heading back to Barnoldswick. Friday evening saw us wild mooring around Langber, a beautiful spot and a really lovely evening. We knew it was forecasting rain for Saturday so up and at it early as we were picking up...

21 May

Thank you

Posted by Russell Chase

Just a quick note to say a sincere thank you for your hospitality shown to Rob, Alan and myself aboard Westmorland last week, for what was a most enjoyable trip up and over the Pennines. Despite the early week weather being a bit Northern with some heavy rain at times the latter part was kind and I returned looking a little pinker that when we left.

Your staff, the boat and everything about Shire Cruisers was first class...