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76-YEAR-OLD CANAL BOAT IS LOOKING FOR NEW FRIENDS

Birdswood Heritage narrow boat Birdswood was built just before WW2. Now in her eighth decade, she has found a new lease of life running popular public cruises from Cromford Wharf, carrying over 5,000 passengers last year.

Birdswood is operated by volunteers on behalf of the Friends of the Cromford Canal, a registered charity (No. 1100700) whose aim is the full restoration of this historic canal for the benefit of the general public. Aiming to build on their first season's success, the team is looking to sign up more volunteers from local communities, so they're running a recruitment open day at Cromford Wharf on Tuesday 31st March, 10am to 4pm. This will give anyone over 18 of any background and ability, an opportunity to learn more about this successful start-up tourist business, to talk to volunteers and to take a brief trip on the boat. It's free and no booking is required.

Helping to run Birdswood is fun, sociable and rewarding. You'll meet new friends and learn new skills which could help you with getting a job. In return for a minimum of one day of your time each month, you'll receive full training in many aspects of passenger trip boat operations. The Birdswood managers will even write you a job reference once you've been with the boat for a while.

Volunteers are needed in all areas: boat crew, towpath team and swing bridge assistants, admin, maintenance and housekeeping, catering, and assisting with marketing and communications.

For more details or to arrange a free individual 'taster' session if you can't attend on 31st March, call the Birdswood Boat Manager on 07552 055455 or email [email protected]