It was a beautifully sunny, yet cold and frosty, morning on the canal today. We were here to visit MGM Boats in order to develop our plans. The boatyard looked lovely in the frosty sunshine. We have spent a lot of time over the past month planning out rooms, thinking about space, finding pictures of styles we like, and even coming up with a new name for the boat! We arrived armed with drawings. It was encouraging to discover that Martin at MGM had reached almost exactly the same decisions as ourselves. Planning a narrowboat is all about finding ways to save space. Our concept for the back study-bedroom did exactly that, saving roughly three feet when compared with our first attempt. This space will be put to good use further down the boat, particularly in the kitchen.
So, the boat will be 67′, which is close to the maximum length for a narrowboat. The stern will be done in a typical MGM style, with a large cruiser deck so that people can gather, and central steps down into the cabin. This will look something like one of their previous boats, called ‘Snail’s Pace’. The first three photographs here give a good idea.
Once inside, the first room will be Andrew’s study bedroom, containing a music studio space and a double bed, along with a wardrobe and washing machine. From there you pass through a walk-through bathroom, in which the corridor switches sides so that boat is nicely balanced. The next room is a double bedroom with large wardrobe at the foot of the bed. After that comes the kitchen, with an external hatch opposite the sink, and wine and vegetable coolers sunk into the floor. Beyond that is the saloon, with the solid fuel stove to the left side of the doors out, and the TV stand to the right. This also has a hatch, a loose-leaf table, and a crafting cupboard for Louise. The front doors open into the ‘conservatory’ well deck area, which has banquette seating arranged around a removable table. This will be a wonderful space for sitting out, dining, admiring the view, etc. It has a solid steel roof and a transparent removable cover for maximum view all around. The water tank is cleverly built into the seating. Beyond that is the hatch containing the bow-thrusters. The roof will have solar panels, a TV antenna system (operated from inside the boat), a wifi antenna (also connected to a box inside the boat), the chimney for the stove and the usual plank, pole and mop (does anybody ever actually use the mop?). The colour scheme will be green (similar to Faustroll) and cream with some red. As these plans develop, we will start posting more detailed diagrams and photographs here. Andrew