The Independent London Newspaper


Increase in anti-social behaviour on towpath fuels legal threat against Canal and River Trust

Published: 21 June, 2013

LEGAL action is being threatened against the organisation responsible for the canal and towpath at the Angel unless it starts policing anti-social behaviour.

Local Labour councillor Martin Klute said he’s so fed up with the escalating complaints against boat users by residents in Noel Road that he is asking Islington Council to investigate the possibility of taking action against the Canal and River Trust.

He spoke out two weeks after the Tribune featured a team from the London Assembly Environment committee, headed by Green representative Jennie Jones, who spoke to both sides in the dispute.  

Ms Jones is currently compiling a report on the “towpath war” for London Mayor Boris Johnson.

Cllr Klute said: “It seems to be getting worse all the time.

"Last weekend we had people sitting on the arm of a lock cooking on a wok and impeding boats. Then last Saturday a floating stage moored up opposite Hanover School playing music at midnight.

“The council had to send a noise control officer down to ask them to quiet down. People think they can get away with anything because there are no sanctions.”

Another big problem according to Cllr Klute is that rubbish is being allowed to accumulate along the towpath.

“There are no domestic refuse facilities for boat people at the Angel which means rubbish is left in bags on the towpath overflowing in a bin,” he said.

Sorwar Ahmed, Canal & River Trust boating liaison manager, said: “We appreciate people’s concerns and we are doing everything we can to find some solutions.

"We’re already looking at improving signage and better ways to engage with boaters, for example.

“We are working closely with Islington Council to do this and we’ll certainly speak with Cllr Klute again about his concerns.”


Islington's responsibilities.

The people sitting on the lock gate are probably not boaters as proper boaters do not impede others. If there are no rubbish facilities but only an overflowing rubbish bin then what are the council doing about especially as most rubbish will be put there by towpath users ie residents. Where were the council when a number of boats were recently vandalised? Where were the council when I was terrified by local thugs on the towpath last year? Stop shirking your responsibilities Islington Council by constantly blaming others. Earn your keep and sort your own patch out.

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