Famous Fleets feature article Issue 19 - Autumn 2010
(d) – day boat
(m) – motor boat
GUCCC – Grand Union Canal Carrying Company Limited
*Registration relates to the former owner – most of these served as day boats in the Barlow fleet and were no longer used as dwellings.
It has not been possible to determine when many of the day boats that were bought second hand entered the fleet. These boats feature in the Birmingham Canal Navigations’ gauging registers but the dates of their transfer to a new owner are not given and there are also some doubts as to their name in the Barlow fleet. Likewise it has also been difficult at times to differentiate in the records between the original Samuel Barlow partnership and the subsequent Samuel Edwin Barlow business.
In the absence of the firm's records, ascertaining the fleet numbers for many of the boats has been somewhat fraught. Information has come from various sources such as the Birmingham Canal Navigation's gauging records, from old photographs and from personal observations but this has revealed many number were duplicated and it seems some boats carried different numbers at different times. Most of the numbers up to the early forties have been found together with those from ninety onwards, but in between there are large gaps.