The Jones Family

We're ten in total. Mum, Dad, Son and two Daughters who are married to two fine Son-In-Laws. We are also blessed with three fantastic Grandchildren.

I suppose you could say we really are a close family and we enjoy spending time together. Forget birthdays and Christmas, we'll get together at the drop of a hat. The message goes out on our family What's App group and before you know it, we're gathering at our favourite ale house, restaurant or more usually, our house! We really wouldn't have it any other way.

When designing our boat Maddison, we wanted a boat that could accommodate a family, without having to rough it! Having loved ones around really is the best! With Maddison having eight berths and a spacious layout with a shower room (with toilet) and another toilet at the rear, we think we've achieved this goal.

Some people define a boat as .... "A hole in water into which you pour money" We know from experience, canal boating can be expensive. But we've enjoyed some really happy times afloat. So as family people, we would like to offer you the opportunity to experience the same enjoyment at a more affordable price. So when we retired and had the time and flexibility, we decided we could do just this.

WARNING - Be careful.... Getting hooked on boating might end up with you buying a boat yourself and that ends in many £'s.

The Dad as a young boy steering a narrow boat

The Dad

Blimey, this photo is a long time ago..... Where has that time gone?

As a boy I was fortunate enough to experience a few canal boat holidays with my mum and dad.

I remember being accompanied by aunties and uncles, cousins and family friends as we ventured along the Llangollen Canal. From memory, the boat was fairly big and slept a lot of people but was a little short on home comforts.

In fact, I seem to remember that one of the chores undertaken by the "Dads" on the boat was the daily ritual of emptying the blue chemical toilet at a convenient disposal point.

Coincidentally, I also recollect an incident where one of my uncles, who will remain anonymous. He was carrying a full toilet tank. He stepped onto a wet gang plank and in one slow, graceful movement, slid along the plank, flung his arms into the air and ended up waist deep in water that slowly began to turn blue around him as the contents of the chemical toilet began to leak into the water around him.... That's why we don't have chemical toilets aboard Madisson.

Well. It made for good childhood memories. And I'm sure you’ll take some fond memories away with you when you venture aboard our boat. Minor mishaps aside, the real thrill of exploring the country we thought we knew so well, and seeing things from a completely different perspective has stayed with me for over thirty years.

So much so, having never ventured again onto the canal, we decided to take the plunge (forgive the pun) and get our very own narrowboat, Maddison.

I can't emphasise this enough, but it's strange that it takes two days on a boat to get somewhere an hours car drive away. But then I suppose the saying is very true, "It's more about the journey than the destination"

The Dad steering a canal narrow boat
A woman seering a canal narrow boat

"We love to have the family together aboard Maddison. Whenever we are out cruising alone, the kids always phone to meet up and spend a few days cruising together. Extra hands for the locks in return for some home cooking is a fair exchange"

The Mum

I had never been on a Narrowboat before and was to say the least "resistant" to the idea of buying a narrowboat.

However, we walked our little Cocker Spaniel "Maddison" (who the boat is named after) along the nearby canals and I began to see its charm.

We enjoyed talking to the boaters we saw and listening to their journeys tales .

With some trepidation I agreed and we spent a year designing and setting out the boat to our requirements.

I confess, I've been bitten by the boating bug and we take every opportunity to cruise on our boat with our family and friends.

We've made lots of other friends in the boating community that we would never have done had we not stepped aboard a boat.

Now we have retired from our regular work and have the time, we decided to offer the opportunity for people to enjoy Maddison and spend some quality time aboard with family and friends.

We knew that a canal boat holiday was expensive and booking for a full week was a big leap of faith paying for a full week, without knowing if you would enjoy it. That's why we decided to start with 3 night short breaks. We're happy to say that this has proved to be a great and inexpensive introduction to boating. We've had lots of first time boaters who return for longer cruises aboard Maddison.