The Parks Trust teams up with Electra to offer new cruising opportunities


Major works to restore and interpret the historic park at Great Linford Manor have included the provision of a mooring point for Electra.

This allows Bedford & Milton Keynes Waterway Trust volunteers, who run the popular all-electric community boat, to offer a new selection of Grand Union Canal cruises.

“We are most grateful to the Parks Trust for giving us access to this mooring and charging point for Electra. It means we can now offer cruises starting at Great Linford, including relaxing cruises through Stanton Low Park, and Cream Tea cruises on Wednesdays from 5th April. This is in addition to our existing routes from our base at Campbell Wharf.” said Lead Cabin Host, James Clifton.

“We’re also delighted that, on the third Thursday morning of the month, we will be running an ‘Explore the Canal’ at Great Linford. This combines a cruise from Campbell Wharf with a 45-minute guided tour by a Parks Trust speaker about the canal at Great Linford and the impact it had on the Manor gardens and the village” he added.

“The Parks Trust is delighted to work in partnership with the Bedford & Milton Keynes Waterway Trust. This work will allow visitors to enjoy another view of the canal, which passes through the park” Julie Dawes, the Parks Trust’s Events and Community Engagement Manager.

“The partnership is a great way to engage new audiences with the National Lottery Heritage funded project, that is revealing, reviving and restoring the wider 18th century landscape of the park”, she added.

Last year the Trust hosted over 180 cruises from Campbell Wharf.

Details of all cruises, including dates and booking information, can be found by visiting the website Book a trip on Electra

For more information:

Bedford & Milton Keynes Waterway Trust

Media contact: James Clifton, B&MK Waterway Enterprise limited – Electra

The boat can carry up to 12 guests; it includes lavatory provision and access lift for users of standard size wheelchairs. Cruises are run in line with public health guidance. The boat is well ventilated, has an air filter and is sanitized before each cruise.

Electra was launched in May 2021 and is the first all-electric trip boat to be built by Warwickshire-based boatbuilders Colecraft Engineering, run by Gary Cole along with a team of 20 supporting steelwork, carpentry, engineering and sales staff. They have built more than 30 trip boats built since 2010, including two for Longleat Safari Park and twelve for the Olympic Games in 2012. The narrowboat will use an all-electric propulsion unit from Fischer Panda. The electric propulsion batteries with be capable of being charged from both mains power and on-board solar panels.

The Bedford & Milton Keynes Waterway Trust has funded the construction of the boat, with generous contributions from Crest Nicholson, via Milton Keynes Council s106 funding for the Campbell Wharf development, the Milton Keynes Community Foundation, and donations from Trust members.

Bedford & Milton Keynes Waterway Trust

The Bedford & Milton Keynes Waterway Trust was established in 1995 to promote a new 16-mile Waterway Park, incorporating a new broad canal connecting the Grand Union Canal in Milton Keynes to the River Great Ouse in Bedford.

Running trip boats is a key activity for the Trust, raising funds and awareness. Its cruises let thousands of local people enjoy being on their local waterway in Bedford, and soon in Milton Keynes, demonstrating the value that Waterway Parks can bring.

Having designed a route, now protected by local authority policies in three Local Plans, the Trust is currently lobbying for its inclusion in plans for local water resource management and as part of the Oxford-Cambridge Arc infrastructure. The Trust works with a range of partners to ensure opportunities to integrate the Waterway into development and thereby maximize delivery of local benefits. The Trust is a company limited by guarantee and a registered charity.