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How we bought our boat

11th Sept Today, we looked at two narrowboats for sale on the Trinity Marina, Hinckley. One of them, “Phoenix III “, really caught our eye. A 52 foot 4 berth cruiser, she is 10 years old and is presented in a good, clean, well cared for condition.

12th Sept Today, we returned to take another look at “Phoenix III “ and we were not disappointed. As a result, we made an offer to buy her. Unfortunately, we will have to await the return of her owners before we can take ownership.

21st Sept So much frustration! The current owners of Phoenix III are unable to be contacted, perhaps they didn’t expect an offer so soon. Anyway, this leaves us in a sort of limbo, not knowing whether or not we are going to own this particular boat. In the meantime we walk to the marina, take a look at her and feed the ducks.

23rd Sept The sound of silence is now deafening. We understand that the current owners are abroad and that the man who lives on the boat when he works here will be returning to work on Thursday 27th. It still seems unbelievable that anyone would put a boat up for sale and then “disappear “ for three weeks.

28th Sept Well, Thursday 27th came and went and still no sign of the mysterious boat owner. A visit to the marina to see the broker reveals that there has been a mix up with the dates, the sellers are actually on holiday until the 29th! Let’s see what tomorrow brings?

UPDATE At ten past four we had a call from the broker letting us know that the owners had returned from holiday and have accepted the offer. Within ten minutes we had walked to the marina and paid our deposit! Hopefully we can take ownership within the next week or two. Afterwards we sat on the decking outside the Marina pub and had a celebratory drink. A boat passed by piloted by a couple who had been in the shop at the same time as us, “Which one did you buy? “, they called. “Phoenix III! “, we replied, “It’s in the marina! “. We got a big grin, a thumbs up and a cry of “Well done “, from the couple as they headed off down the canal towards the Limekilns.

29th Sept The weather today was pleasant, sunny and bright so we took a drive down to Braunston which is just under 25 miles from Hinckley. After a walk along the towpath to The Admiral Nelson, we sat by the adjacent lock, had a drink and watched a number of boats navigate the locks in both directions. Sue decided that she wants to be the lock keeper rather than steer the boat. We purchased a map of the Warwickshire Ring before returning home.

30th Sept Today was the big day! We visited Sam, the broker at the marina at 3pm. We have learned that we can take ownership this Friday, October 5th and we have now signed up for our mooring. Having handed over the necessary fees, all that remains is to insure the boat, transfer the BW Licence, see the owner for a handover meeting tomorrow and get the keys on Friday!!! Another celebratory drink at the Marina (how many more times are we going to celebrate buying this boat?) and then off home, happy!

1st Oct Today we met the current owner for a “handover “ meeting. Of course the real handover doesn’t happen until this coming Friday, however we had a chance to find out about the various pieces of equipment on board. As we first thought, this boat has been lovingly cared for by its owners. We also had our first opportunity to sit and relax in the comfort of the cabin, the rain was gently falling outside while we sat in the warmth provided by the stove. The boat has central heating, an immersion heater, a battery charger and a generator, so with the stove as well all forms of heat and light are on tap. Roll on Friday!

2nd Oct There’s not much left to do now except wait. We took a walk over to the marina this evening to have a look at how easy or more importantly, how difficult it will be to enter and leave the marina. After surveying the area from the bridge which spans the marina entrance, we were left with the impression that it should be alright if navigated with care.

5th Oct Mid afternoon and we’ve got the keys! We’re both pretty excited and pleased that Phoenix III is finally ours. We only spend about an hour or so, familiarising ourselves with the inside layout again. It is a beautiful sunny day and the temptation to take her out is almost overwhelming. However, we resist and leave our maiden voyage until Saturday.

October 2007
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