Reception pupils from Kilsby Primary School enjoyed a canal a boat trip ahead of this weekend’s Crick Boat Show.
The trip was held to highlight the fact that all children aged 16 and under can visit the show for free this year and all visitors can enjoy a free boat trip at the event.
The children took a 30-minute canal boat trip along the Grand Union Canal, skippered by Brian Eaton, chairman of the of the volunteer-run London Narrowboat Project, with Canal & River Trust canal explorer volunteer Mike Major pointing out waterway wildlife along the way.
The children also met actor, Andrew Ashmore, impersonating the great canal engineer James Brindley, whose 300th anniversary is being celebrated at the show with appearances from Brindley, talks and special activities for children.
Brindley will demonstrate how an aqueduct works using a large cheese, just as the real Brindley famously did at a parliamentary committee looking at the application to extend the Bridgewater Canal in 1762.
Peter Johns the show director, said: “We hope the children have a brilliant day experiencing a boat trip and learning how and why our incredible canal system was built.
“It’s particularly special that they get to learn this from the man who was instrumental in developing the canal network - James Brindley.
“The children are getting an exclusive preview of the boat trips and the Brindley impersonator that Crick Boat Show-goers will enjoy meeting this year.”
Rebecca Smith, reception teacher at Kilsby Primary School, said: “The children were so excited to be taking a boat trip on their local canal. They looked forward to spotting wildlife along the way and finding out about the great canal engineers.
“The rest of our school have also enjoyed a Water Safety Assembly on Monday with Canal & River Trust canal explorers volunteers, as well as ‘Build a Canal’ and ‘Build a Bridge’ workshops.”
Crick Boat Show is Britain’s biggest inland waterways festival, showcasing the inland waterways industry with over 250 exhibitors from across the canal world.
The event offers a day out for all the family with dozens of boats to look round, free boat trips, live music, children’s activities, a real ale marquee, and a large variety of food and drink stalls.
Organised by Waterways World in partnership with the Canal & River Trust and Crick Marina, the 2016 Show, which takes place at Crick Marina is expected to attract 25,000 visitors.
Sarah Cook, from the Canal & River Trust education co-ordinator, adds: “Canals are such a fantastic destination for families to enjoy spending time outdoors by the water - walking, boating, fishing and wildlife watching. People in Northamptonshire are lucky to have 58 miles of the Grand Union Canal passing through their county and we are keen to encourage the next generation to make the most out of their local waterways.”
Crick Boat Show 2016 will be open from 10am till 6pm on Saturday and Sunday, and from 10am to 5pm on Monday. Evening entertainment runs from 7.30pm to 11.30pm.
Adult ticket prices are £15, Senior Citizens and Concessions are £13.50. All children aged 16 and under go free. Three-day tickets are also available for £29.
For more information visit www.crickboatshow.com, call 01283 742970 or visit www.facebook.com/crickboatshow.