Couple to set up rowing boat business on River Slea

A HUSBAND and wife are seeking to set up in business hiring out rowing boats on the River Slea.

The couple, who live on a narrowboat at Chapel Hill, hit upon the idea when they attended the unveiling of the new slipway and lifting bridge at Sleaford.

Initially they would operate around four boats on the water between Carre Street and Cogglesford Mill.

Sleaford Navigation Trust and North Kesteven District Council officers are supportive and the town council has allowed them to be based under a gazebo on Eastgate Green for a trial period of 15 months. They are currently waiting for approval from the Environment Agency.

The hire boats would be moored midstream when not in use and available during the summer months, hopefully starting this school holidays.

An electrically powered safety boat would be on standby and buoyancy aids would be provided.

Years ago there used to be rowing boat hire on the Slea near Cogglesford Mill. Mr Chamberlain said: "When I saw everyone enjoying themselves at the opening I thought people would like to have a few boats.

"The waterway is steeped in history. There are little villages all along the Trent and Mersey Canal thriving because of it."

Mr Chamberlain, who has been boating since childhood, added: "By doing it during the summer holidays the nesting should have finished."