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Canal craning and convoy spring 2024

We have planned the convoy and craning dates for the spring of 2024 as below.

Please note: Due to the logistics of the boat yard we may ask that you crane into the water on a date given by us.

Once we have confirmed your date, you will need to contact Spence Crane Hire to book your craning.


Craning dates

  • Saturday 9 March, 07:30am start
  • Saturday 6 April, 07:30am start - please note this has been postponed until Saturday 13 April

You may wish to use any certified crane company at another time during the working week (Mon to Fri) with our agreement and with our banksman in attendance (full charges apply). Please see below for customer craning operations and make a note of safety precautions in the interests of Health and Safety.


Convoy dates

Saturday 16 March

  • Leave Exeter basin 08:00am
  • Bridge opening 09:30am
  • High Water Turf Lock 10:25am / 3.3m
  • Turf Lock out 10:30am (approx)

Wednesday 10 April - Please note that this has been postponed. Revised dates will be confirmed as soon as possible

  • Leave Exeter basin 08:30am
  • Bridge opening 10:00am
  • Turf arrival 10:00am 
  • No lockout on the day

Saturday 13 April - Please note that this has been postponed. Revised dates will be confirmed as soon as possible

  • Leave Exeter basin 08:00am
  • Bridge opening 09:30am
  • High Water Turf Lock 10:28am / 3.5m
  • Turf Lock out 10:30am (approx)

Thursday 18th April

  • Leave Exeter basin 09:45 hrs
  • Bridge opening 11:00 hrs
  • High Water Turf Lock 15:56 hrs / 2.5m
  • Turf Lock out 14:00 hrs (approx)

Saturday 27th April

  • Leave Exeter basin 07:15 hrs
  • Bridge opening 08:30 hrs
  • High Water Turf Lock 09:26 hrs / 3.5m
  • Turf Lock out 09:30 hrs (approx)

Convoys must leave on time in order to make the bridge opening time.

Please let us know your preferred craning, convoy and mast stepping (if required) dates as soon as possible so that we can do our best to accommodate your request.



Please check your mast, if it is over 10 metres above the water line it will not go under the M5 Bridge.

Masts can only be stepped at Turf on weekdays so please book this separately with the Canal Office.



Craning advice for boat owners

Craning is potentially a dangerous operation. The City Council’s staff will be working to a Safe Working Practice, which is available to boat owners upon request.


Before your boat is prepared for craning please read carefully the following:

  1. Make sure you know who the Council’s Banksmen are for your craning operation.  They have received specialist training.
  2. Check with the Council’s Banksmen where and when your boat is to be craned.
  3. You, or a competent representative, are strongly advised to be present during the lift.
  4. Obey the instructions of the Council’s Banksmen at all times.
  5. Make sure you know the approximate total weight of your boat and all equipment on-board; the Councils Banksmen will not allow boats in excess of 20 tons to be craned. This weight limit policy has been adopted following Health and Safety reviews, land stability testing and further compounded because of limited storage space being available.
  6. Do not signal the crane driver at any time, as only the Council’s Banksmen may do that.
  7. Stand well back from the operation (behind the barriers where applicable).
  8. Keep all family and friends well away from the operational area.
  9. Anyone permitted in the craning area must wear suitable protective clothing, particularly a high visibility jacket and a hard hat.
  10. If you are working near to another person’s boat that is being lifted, move away from the area until the lift is complete.
  11. Fin and long keeled boats must be supported by a cradle or appropriate and well-fixed legs.
  12. Legs and cradles are provided by ECC. On rare occasions cradles may be provided by the boat owner, but they must be suitable and acceptable to the Council (that is an annual engineer’s certificate of inspection). The Council’s staff may require that other means of support are provided as well.
  13. You will not be allowed to assist with placing and adjusting supports unless you own the cradle or legs, blocks, props, chocks and wedges etc., and you have had permission from a Council’s Banksman at the time of the lift.
  14. Please ask the Council’s Banksman regarding antifouling during the lift. Anyone permitted  will be solely at their own risk, and you must first obtain the permission of both a Council’s Banksman and the crane driver and wear suitable PPE: hard hat etc.
  15. During your boat storage period, don’t interfere with supports positioned by Council staff, even to prepare or paint underneath.  Please ask for assistance should support positions need to be changed.

Please be sure to comply with all of the above points.

When this content has been updated

Last updated 16 April 2024