“When someone says ‘it weighs a ton,’ I know how much that means,” says Coal Liz. She owns the business with her boyfriend, who lives on the buttee boat that is supposed to be pulled by her boat. This year he has to work at another job until they can pay off the boats, so she is doing most of the work by herself and has the muscles to prove it. Being able to access more clients once the canal is non-tidal might mean her boyfriend can quit his job sooner, for now she is eagerly looking forward to taking a break in the summer until next fall when the weather turns cold again.

peace and quiet

Rachel and John Fitzgerald drive their boat, Jesse, to their new mooring at Canary Wharf, in the heart of London’s business district. They are excited about being closer to their work and having access to the good grocery stores that service the busy business district but they are sad to loose their privacy and silence, as two more high-rise buildings are being built very close to their new home.

home sweet

Dick Vincent at his very tidy and regulated new mooring in Canary Wharf. Dick and four other narrow boats from Three Mills feel small at their new mooring next to the Dutch barges and high-rises. But the new community has warmly welcomed the little boat people. Although they have to keep their belongings clean around their boats at all times, because of all the potential eyes that could be watching, day or night, they are starting to feel at home.


Plants and other random belongings sit left-behind at Three Mills mooring, until eventually the construction will start and someone will throw them away. In 18 months the boats will come back to a new and improved, continuously floating, mooring.

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