Following an EGM in April 2018 the name of the society changed from the Boat Museum Society to the Waterways Museum Society. The principal aim of the Society is the preservation of the historic boats, skills, knowledge and way of life of the waterways. The society founded the Boat Museum (now the National Waterways Museum) in Ellesmere Port, which it continues to actively support.

A group of waterway enthusiasts formed the North Western Museum of Inland Navigation Ltd in 1971 to prevent the working craft and traditions of the waterways from disappearing. This developed into the accredited National Waterways Museum which the Society  is committed to supporting, in preserving the museum’s nationally important collection of historic boats, artifacts and archives. It works together with the Canal & River Trust in encouraging the public to appreciate and treasure the canals, their traditional skills and way of life. To find out more about the Society ,its history and its aims  click the ABOUT link on the main menu.

The Society’s long standing involvement in waterways heritage means that many of its members are held in high regard, contributing their knowledge and advice both locally and nationally.

WMS now owns just one of the historic vessels at the Museum: the horse drawn tar boat Gifford which is looked after and operated by WMS members. All the other craft have been handed over to the Canal & River Trust for their ongoing maintenance and preservation.

The Society’s newsletter RE:PORT is published on line four times a year. This keeps members informed about the activities of the Society and the National Waterways Museum as well as other snippets of inland waterways related information. The most recent issue can only be accessed by WMS members via the MEMBER ACCESS link. However older newsletters can be accessed by anyone via the RE:PORT link in a sub menu of PUBLICATIONS on the main menu.

The Waterways Journal is also published by the WMS annually. Details can be found by clicking on Waterways Journal link in a sub menu of PUBLICATIONS on the main menu.

A meeting is held once a month from September through to May. These are held in the Rolt Centre at the National Waterways Museum, Ellesmere Port. The evening programme usually consists of a talk or lecture by experts in various waterway topics followed by a short social period of catching up with like minded friends over coffee or beer in the lounge. Details of these meetings and other museum events can be found on the DIARY page on the main menu.

Whilst members’ financial support is essential in enabling the Society to continue its work, it also likes to welcome individuals who may be interested in becoming more actively involved in the work of the society, for example, by being involved in its governance, or representing its interest on external bodies involved with waterways.

The Society supports and is supported by a number of Traditional Craft Groups. To find out more about these please click on TRADITIONAL CRAFTS on the main menu.

News snippets about the Society and National Waterways Museum, Ellesmere Port are posted here, they can be viewed via ‘Latest news posts’ at the top of the righthand column on this page.

To visit the Canals and Rivers Trust’s web site click on NATIONAL WATERWAYS MUSEUM.

Last updated 12th June 2018

Back to top