Enjoy a guided boat tour following a scenic stretch of the restored North Walsham and Dilham Canal, in the solar-powered boat Ella II. Run by a near-silent electric motor, trips on Ella II offer an easy way to get up close with the wildlife of the canal and learn more about its history and restoration. Boat trips take around one hour, starting in the mill pond opposite Ebridge Mill. To book, call Graham Pressman on 07585 160772. All proceeds from boat trips go to the North Walsham and Dilham Canal Trust and towards the ongoing conservation of the canal.
When do boat trips run?
Boat trips are by arrangement, either afternoons or evenings, subject to crew availability and weather. If you are chartering the boat for a group, you can arrange a time that’s convenient for you. Call Graham Pressman to book on 07585 160 772.
Where do boat trips run?
Your trip will commence from Ebridge lock opposite Ebridge Mill. This can be found along the North Walsham–Happisburgh Road (for SatNavs use the postcode: NR28 9NG). Boat trips follow a return route to Spa Common and back, taking approximately one hour.
Is there food or drink?
Refreshments are not currently provided but please feel encouraged to bring your own. Food and drink is very welcome – hot, cold or celebratory! Please bear in mind that it is only a small boat and there is no toilet onboard or en route.
What should I wear?
You will be on the water for around one hour. The boat is open air but covered by a canopy. Remember to bring a jacket to protect you from any cool breezes and a raincoat to protect you from any showers that might be forecast. Arrangements can be changed if inclement weather is expected. If it’s sunny, meanwhile, a sunhat and sunscreen is recommended.
What can I expect to see?
Wildlife varies day to day and hour by hour. Birds, from the smallest wagtails to coots, grebes and swans, frequent the canal, as well as birds of prey including raptors and harriers. If you’re quick of eye you may see deer, foxes and water voles, while, on calmer days, in clear water, we often see fish chasing the front of the boat. Passengers can choose whether they’d like historic commentary from the skipper, who is knowledgeable about the history of the canal and its restoration, or to chat amongst themselves and ask questions as they go along.
Can I pay with my bank debit/credit card?
Yes you may. The North Walsham and Dilham Canal Trust recently introduced their new ‘Contactless’ machine at their Ebridge Open Weekend. It worked very well. You may pay for your boat trip via this or by cash, cash is still always very welcome.
How much does it cost?
For boat charters we ask for a minimum donation of £40 for groups of up to ten people per boat – there are two boats that can run in tandem. All income goes towards the conservation and restoration of the canal. Additional donations are always most welcome. If weather is inclement or, for any other reason, you need to postpone, you can re-book a different day at no extra charge with only two hours’ notice by phone.
How do I book a trip?
You can book your charter or public trip by calling Graham on 07585 160772.
What about Coronavirus?
Special attention has been given to ensure boat trips meet Covid-19 guidelines, for the safety of all involved. The boat is thoroughly cleaned before and after each trip. The skipper of the boat remains socially distanced at all times.