News article created on 8 April 2019

New boaters' survey to help with waterways experience

A new monthly survey is launching to get boaters’ up-to-date feedback on the waterways they cruise. The Waterway Experience survey will enable us to react quickly to improve boaters’ experience.

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Following feedback from the boating community, we're also slimming down our annual 'Perceptions of the Trust' survey – previously known as the Boat Owners’ Views survey – to focus on what people know, and how they feel, about the charity. The survey will run throughout April.

Jon Horsfall, head of customer services at Canal & River Trust, said: “By sending out a new, separate, Waterway Experience survey monthly, we’ll be able to get a much clearer picture of what’s affecting boaters as it happens. It will enable us to be more responsive and target our maintenance and repair work on the areas that really need it throughout the year. Boaters are the eyes and ears of the waterways and are often the first to come across any problems. 

“The old Boat Owners’ Views survey gave us loads of really useful information, but the feedback we received was that the sheer length of the document put people off completing it. We hope that the shorter Perceptions survey will encourage more people to share their thoughts and feelings, so we can get a good sense of how we, as a charity, are doing.

“We want to make your experience on the water a relaxing and enjoyable one, and your feedback is invaluable – please take the time to take part in these surveys.”

The Perceptions survey will be sent out to a third of the Trust’s leisure boat licence holders at the start of April and will run until 30 April. Boaters will be sent a link to the survey by email, text, or post.

The Waterway Experience survey will be launched in May. It'll be sent to a sample of boaters sighted on each waterway region every month. Volunteer lock keepers will give out postcards with survey details to hire boaters at various key sites.

We look forward to the results of the surveys.