An open letter to the Head of Boating of Canal and River Trust

Dear Mike Grimes,

We were upset by the report of comments by your Relationship, Policy and Strategy Manager for boating, Matthew Symonds, in referring to live-aboard boaters as ‘gits’, especially when he has been a senior spokesperson for your organisation.

This is at a time when your policies are putting much pressure on a section of live-aboards. Many feel that CRT views live-aboard boaters as an irritation that needs to be removed from the waterways. It does not bode well for CRT that a staff member with the role of managing relationships has been reported as making such a derogatory remark.

We therefore call upon CRT to carry out an  investigation into this incident, with the involvement of boater groups such as the National Bargee Travellers Association. Depending on the outcome of the investigation we demand that CRT takes action to ensure that an incident like this does not happen again.

Yours sincerely

National Bargee Travellers Association


We gave with people signing it in at CRT Headquarters in Milton Keynes on Tuesday 10 May



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