Below are answers to some of the regular questions we get asked
Do you provide winter/temporary moorings?
Yes we absolutely do. We have winter/temporary moorings available for not just narrowboats and cruisers, but widebeam boats too.
When are your Winter and Summer opening hours?
Our Winter opening hours run from 1st November to 30th April and our Summer opening hours run from 1st May - 31st October.
What are your hours of business?
The office and the boathouse are closed all day on a Tuesday. The rest of the week in the boathouse is open from 10am - 4pm. The office Winter opening hours are 9am - 4pm, in the Summer 8.30 - 5.30 pm.
What is the latest we can arrive at the campsite and how early do we need to leave?
We ask that visitors vacate their pitch by 11am. With regards to arrivals, the office closes at 5.30pm, however we do appreciate that on a Friday night especially, people can get delayed. As long as you keep communicating with us then that is fine. Otherwise we say 8pm is the latest for you to arrive and set up camp.
Do you allow pets?
Yes all pets are welcome, in fact we have miles of fabulous dog walks around White Mills. The only thing we do ask is that dogs are kept on leads and that their owners clean up after them using the dog poo bins around the marina.
We want to get to a train station, how close is your nearest train station?
When it comes to train stations then you are spoiled for choice, Wellingborough (Midland Mainline) is literally under 10 minutes away by car and has a fantastic fast and speedy train service to London St Pancras. Northampton railway station which takes perhaps 5 minutes longer to get to, has a regular service to London Euston as well as Birmingham New Street and beyond.
Where can we catch a bus as we need to get to the railway station?
Again we are so lucky here, Earls Barton has a very regular bus service to Northampton, Corby, Kettering, Peterborough and Milton Keynes, we keep a bus timetable in the office - so just ask and we will help you with your onward journey.
Do you have CCTV?
Yes we do have CCTV strategically placed across the marina.
Is it possible to camp?
White Mills Marina is now a certificated Camping and Caravanning site, which means we can accommodate up to 5 caravans and 10 tents at anyone time. We now have hook ups for 5 caravans and 3 tents. Open from May to October, you need to be a member of the Camping and Caravanning Club to be able to stay on our site.
We plan to arrive on a Sunday, do any of the pubs in Earls Barton serve food on a Sunday night?
Sadly not, however the local curry house - Meraz will deliver to White Mills, we have takeaway menus in the office, so please just ask. If you have a car then the Rose and Crown at Yardley Hastings serves food until 8pm or there is the Oriental Paradise at Billing which is open too.
Rivers are renowned for flooding, how do we know our boat will be safe?
Being located next to a river, White Mills Marina was designed with flooding in mind so all of our pontoons are floating pontoons - so when it comes to floods being on board is the best place to be!
Are we given any warning that flooding is about to happen?
We would advise that every boater on the River Nene signs up to the Environment Agency's Strong Stream Advice/River Advice for Boaters by emailing WaterwaysSSAAnglian@environment-agency.gov.uk which will make sure you are kept up to date with any developments. In the email you will need to include the following information:
The river(s) the messages are required for ie Nene, Great Ouse (Bedford to Earith) and/or Ancholme
Full name and address details
A contact telephone number for the system to ring
Whether a text and/or email is also required
A boat name and/or registration number
To find out if Strong Stream Advice/River Advice for Boaters has been issued or cancelled, boaters can also call the Floodline service on 0345 988 1188, choose option 1 and enter one of the following quick dial numbers:-
032112 for the River Nene
033211 for the Great Ouse (Bedford to Earith)
031212 for the River Ancholme
Have you ever been out and about on the towpath and wondered what on earth people are talking about! Well wonder no more as here is a useful list of narrowboat jargon.
Aft = The rear of the boat.
Air draft = The height of the boat taken from the waterline to the highest fixed point on the boat. (So you won’t hit a low bridge)
Amid Ships = Central part of a boat
Anode = otherwise known as sacrificial anodes, is a large piece of magnesium often welded under the waterline at the front and rear of a narrowboat hull, which protects the hull from corrosion due to electrolysis. An inspection of the anodes is recommended when the boat is out of the water for blacking.
Anser Pins = Steel pins attached, immediately before the stern counter to either or both gunwales of motors and butties to which straps from the stern dollies or studs of both boats can be tightly hooked or shackled when breasting-up, not only keeping the sterns together but also acting as springs and stopping the pair from riding forwards and backwards against each other. Tunnel hooks can also be attached here
Anti-cavitation Plate = A plate fitted flush to the uxter plate to cover the weedhatch opening.
Beam = The width of a vessel at the widest point.
Bed Cupboard = The decorated cupboard in a boatmans cabin with a tall door that drops down to make into a small double bed.
Berth = A bed or sleeping accommodation on a boat.
Bilge = The compartment at the bottom of the boat where water collects and must be pumped out of the vessel.
Bilge Pump = A pump for removing water that has collected in the bilges.
Blacking = The term used for protective coats of bitumen based paints applied to steel hulls to prevent rusting.
Boatmans Cabin = Originally the after cabin on working boats which provided the crews living and bedroom accommodation. Often replicated on modern traditional style boats.
Boat Safety Certificate = An MOT for narrowboats, which is valid for four years.
Bow = The front.
Bow Thruster = A small propeller or water-jet at the bow, used to turn a vessel at slow speed. Often mounted in a tunnel running through the bow.
Bulkhead = An upright wall within the hull of a ship or boat. Particularly a structural wall which is often watertight.
Bulls Eye = A small round porthole fitted in the cabin top, has convex glass for lighting the cabin.
Butty = An unpowered narrowboat towed behind another, often seen in the days of working boats.
BSC Safety Scheme = All boats require a safety inspection every four years by a qualified Boat Safety surveyor, covers all aspects of boat safety.
Calorifier = Hot water tank heated by the running engine, immersion, central heating or connected to 240v shoreline, (can be a combination)
Canal & River Trust Licence = Boat Licence to use the canals and rivers.
Cant = A raised outer section of a deck normally to the fore and counter decks.
Cassette Toilet = A chemical toilet with a removable storage cassette underneath, can be electrical flushing.
Chine = An angle in the hull. There may be several chines, depending upon the hull design. A narrowboat often has a single chine where the hull wall and bottom plate meet.
Cockpit = Open area usually lower than the side decks used for storage or sitting out.
Counter = Flat area below the water line above the swim.
Counter Plate = The stern section of the hull side plating above the waterline that wraps around the stern and corresponds to the counter swim.
Cratch Board = A triangular board or frame supporting the forward end of cratch covers.
Cratch Cover = A canvas covering over the forward well deck.
Cross Bed = A double bed going across the full width of the boat, the bottom of the bed folds or slides away during the day for gangway access.
Cruiser Stern = Narrowboat with a back deck of between 4-8 Feet in length, providing ample space on the back for several people to stand and socialise.
Dinette = A seating arrangement with storage under and demountable table which converts to a bed.
Draft = The amount of the hull that is below water.
Dolly = A round bollard used for mooring.
Elsan Disposal = A facility for emptying the contents of a cassette toilet holding tank.
Fiddle = A raised lip or rail around the edge of a shelf to prevent items from sliding off.
Foredeck = The higher level deck in the bow of a boat, often over the gas locker in a narrowboat.
Fore well = The lower deck at the front of a boat.
Freeboard = The distance between the waterline and the lowest deck level where water can enter the inside of the boat.
Galley = The kitchen area of a boat.
Galvanic Isolator = A fitting to a boats electrical system intended to prevent corrosion to the hull.
Gunwale = The top edge of the hull were it joins the cabin side, laterally gun wall but pronounced gunnel as tunnel.
Hull = The main part of the boat that sits in the water and gives a boat its buoyancy.
Holding Tank = An on board storage tank used for toilet waste, emptied at pumpout stations.
Houdini hatch = A skylight fitted to the roof of the cabin which can be opened for ventilation or emergency escape.
Inverter = Electronic device for taking power stored in the battery bank and converting 12v DC to 240v AC.
Josher Style Bow = A bow design with a more pointed nose with a slight S shaped sweep, named after Joshua Fellows of Fellows Morton and Clayton carriers fame.
Keel cooled = A closed system, a slab tank (narrow & baffled) is welded to the inside (normally) of the swim, engine cooling water is then circulated through it. (Does the same job as the radiator on a car). Important Note the engine and cooling system can easily have anti-freeze added to prevent frost damage.
Macerator Toilet = Pump out toilet where the waste is macerated into slurry. Monkey Box = A wooden storage box in a boatmans cabin, believed to be called after a make of polish.
Mushroom Vent = A vent in the roof of the boat shaped like a mushroom, which provides ventillation.
Overplate = On a steel vessel. plating fitted on top of the hull plate.
Pigeon Box = A rectangular hole in the deck head covered with a hinged roof used for ventilation.
Pram Canopy = Canopy fitted on folding framework which is easy to put up and down, fitted over a narrowboats counter to protect the steerer from the elements.
Port or Port side = Left-hand side when standing at the stern facing forward (towards the frontend)
Pumpout Toilet = Toilet where the waste is flushed into a holding tank, which is pumped out at a pumpout facility.
Raw water cooled 1. Direct = Canal water is drawn in via a mud box (normally a watertight container large enough to allow the incoming water time to settle) before being pumped around the engine to cool it then returned to the canal. Important Note the engine and every part cooling system must be completely drained during cold weather to prevent frost damage.
Raw water cooled 2. Indirect = Canal water is drawn in via a mud box (normally a watertight container large enough to allow the incoming water time to settle) before being pumped though a heat exchanger mounted on the engine it is then returned to the canal. The engines own coolant is also pump through the heat exchanger but is kept separate inside the heat exchanger enabling the engine to be protected with anti-freeze. Important Note The raw water side of the heat exchanger and unprotected parts cooling system must be completely drained during cold weather to prevent frost damage.
RCD = Recreational Craft Directive. EEC Mandatory standards for the construction of new boats. The RCD certificate lasts four years, after which boats must have a Boat Safety Certificate.
Remote Greaser = A metal cylinder fitted close to the stern tube which acts as a reservoir to grease the stern gland.
Reverse layout = An interior layout with the bedroom at the front and the galley and lounge at the rear. Rubbing Strake - A moulding fitted to the outside of the hull, usually at deck level to protect the topsides.
Rudder nib = On narrowboats, the extension to the rudder above the waterline.
Ruddertstock = The bar, tube or post connecting the rudder vane to the steering mechanism.
Rudderstock tube = A tube in the hull through which the rudderstock passes.
Sacrificial chine = Extension to the bottom plate to provide protection and wear edge for the chine.
Saloon = The living area on a boat.
Scumble = Painted graining make it look like wood.
Scuppers = Holes through hull sides for draining decks & lockers.
Semi-Traditional = Narrowboat style, good compromise between at trad and semi. The looks of a Trad, with the space of a cruiser
Shoreline = A lead from the shore side connected to a 240v electricity supply.
Single Lever Control = A hand lever combining the functions of steering and throttle control.
Skeg = A steel horizontal bar welded to the base plate (normally in channel form) protruding from the stern to carry the lower end of the rudder post and bearing, it also gives some protection to the propeller.
Skin tank = A steel tank welded to the interior face of the hull. The skin tank forms part of the engine cooling system; coolant passes through the tank and is cooled by contact with exterior hull plating.
Soap Holes = Small storage slots in the bulk head of a traditional style boatmans cabin.
Starboard or starboard side = (from the Norse steerboard the oar that was used to steer the boat) right-hand side when standing at the stern facing forward (towards the frontend)
Stern = The back or aft part of the vessel.
Sterngear = The propeller, propeller shaft, sterntube, sterntube bearing, & stuffing box or packing gland (an adjustable gland to help keep water out of the engine space bilge.
Stern gland = Greased packing arrangement that is used to prevent water from entering a vessel at the point where the propeller shaft passes through the hull.
Stern tube = The tube through the hull through which the propeller shaft passes.
Stretching = The boat is lengthened by cutting through and adding a completely new section to make the boat longer.
Superstructure = The structures on a vessel that project above the deck.
Swans neck = The S shaped steel bar welded to the rudder post to which the tiller bar is fitted (the brass shiny stick with a wooden handle on the end) on a motor boat.
Swim = The after (back) underwater part of the hull that goes to a point to allow a cleaner flow of water over the propeller.
Tiller bar (or extension) = Fits on the swans neck of a motor boat to give extra leverage. (The brass shiny stick with a wooden handle on the end).
Transom = The normally rounded after (back) part of the boat above the water where the steerer stands.
Traditional Style = A style of narrow boat typified by short back deck of 2-3 Feet in length, giving more room inside for living.
Tumblehome = The amount a cabin side slopes inwards (to give more bridge clearance).
Uxter Plate = The steel bottom plate of a narrowboat's stern counter deck, where it projects over the propeller and rudder.
Waterline = The line on the boats hull where it floats. = Greased packing arrangement that is used to prevent water from entering a vessel at the point where the propeller shaft passes through the hull.