Wednesday, November 08, 2006

The Birth and Christening

Well, we have had the gestation - shell build and fit out. Now we have the birth as Epiphany leaves Bath Narrowboats at Sells Green. The last minute details were finished. The Amtico flooring and the curtain rails and curtains were in. Now my nerves set in as I watched her hooked up to the forklift, towed out and lifted on to the lorry. Our emotions were running high - excitement, nerves, tears, yes, I did cry as she left the workshop. We had the keys at last!

The picture of the gang shows everybody who has had a hand in the fitting out, plus a few honoured guests, the lorry and crane drivers. From Sells Green she was taken to Bradford on Avon Marina to be craned into the water.

To continue the analogy, we now had the christening and after a few splashes of Champagne, naming and a blessing at last she was in the water. There was very little adjustment needed to her ballasting, a credit to Bath Narrowboats calculations. Epiphany is nearly 16 tons. Someone drank the Champagne; I only had a couple of mouthfuls, despite the picture!

So we were off, plus 3 of the “lads” to finish a couple of jobs and have a bit of a cruise. Unfortunately a very short cruise as the time ran out on us. They helped us through the lock and we spent the night at Bradford on Avon. It was so good to be on Epiphany. She came up to our expectations. She is very quiet, swims wonderfully and is very easy to handle. The more astute of you will have noticed we do not have bow thrusters! We do not want or need them as BJ’s handling of her in the marina demonstrated!

We have had lots of comments and compliments from website watchers, friends, fellow narrow boaters and towpath walkers. As always once a boat settles in the water there is a little “snagging” to do and a few re adjustments, but nothing major.

We had some wonderful days last week, in Bath, on our cruise up to Devizes and finally in her home berth. Words are not really adequate to express out feelings, we have achieved the first step in our dream of living on the water.

We must pay tribute to all those who have helped us so far. We hope they are as pleased and proud as we are. Colecraft – Sam and Dom Cole and their team; Bath Narrowboats – Richard Clarke, Jon Langley and his great, friendly, dedicated team; generous and very supportive friends and all those who have encouraged us, complimented and given advice to us. Also all those owners of narrow boats who have unwittingly given us ideas over the last 30 years as we passed them on the cut or read about their boats.

There will be more pictures so keep with us, let us know your comments and keep a look out for us on Epiphany on your travels too!


  1. Congratulations! Your heart must be singing! May she carry you safely and gracefully all her days.

  2. Congratulations on taking your project from inception to launch, as a landlubber with only part ownership I am truly jealous and look forward to hearing and seeing the exploits of Epiphany in the future.


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