Historic Boat Trips 2024

Experience a ride on a 1930s narrowboat through London

What's On

New for 2024, we offer a limited number of historic boat cruises on selected Saturdays in partnership with Camden Canals and Narrowboat Association on board their 1937 working boat Tarporley.

Guided Cruises

For regular boat trips from London Canal Museum please go to: our regular boat trips page.

Lasting roughly 3 hours or so you will travel on the historic boat Tarporley, on selected Saturdays. Like our regular cruises there will be a guide on board from the museum who will also serve you with tea/coffee and biscuits during the trip. The guide will tell you about the history of the boat you are travelling on and of the route. Bookings are made online on this page.

Dates in 2024 are

April 13th - to Cumberland arm turn
May 11th - to Kingsland Basin
June 15th - to Cumberland arm turn
July 13th - to Kingsland Basin

Important note: The calendar shows all our boat trips so be sure to choose one of the above dates (all Saturdays) to book on the historic boat.

Trips in August and September may be added later


Adult 35
Concession 32
Child 32

All passengers however young or old need to have a ticket

Your ticket includes admission to the museum and refreshments on board the boat. We suggest you arrive at 1000 or soon after to visit the museum before the trip. The boat will depart at 1130 from the museum.

Book Tickets

Choose a Saturday for a Historic Boat Trip - departs 1130

About the boat

Tarporley in a rural lock. Sides painted red.

Tarporley is a narrow boat with a steel hull built in 1937 by W J Yarwood, at Northwich in Cheshire. It was one of 37 "Large Northwich" boats of the "town" class, all of which were named after English towns.

The 37 large boats were built for commercial carrying and were usually paired with an unpowered boat or "butty" to increase capacity for its owner, the Grand Union Canal Carrying Company. It has a strong connection with London having been ased at Bull's Bridge, near Southall, during the Second World War and used to carry cargo around the London area and as far afield as Birmingham. It became part of the nationalised British Transport Waterways fleet in 1949 along with the canals.

In 1957 the boat was leased to Willow Wren Transport Services who continued carrying cargo in her. As commercial traffic declined there was less and less need for working boats but it escaped the scrapyard and in 1972 was bought by the London Borough of Camden as a community boat to provide residential and day trips for children and elderly people. The original "National" diesel engine was replaced in 1972 with a 1958 Lister diesel HR2A engine. There was extensive conversion work carried out at that time to make the boat suitable for carrying passengers, but many original features were retained. The local authority operated the boat for some 20 years but in 1998 it was transferred to a charity the Camden Canals and Narrowboat Assocation, who still operate and maintain Tarporley.

Your skipper will be a member of the CCNA team, with your guide being a member of the London Canal Museum team.