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RYA Approved Inland Waterways Helmsman Courses and MCA Approved Boatmasters Programs at Stockton in Warwickshire

willow wren training

Established in 1994 and bases in Stockton in Warwickshire, Willow Wren Training is the leading canal based RYA and MCA approved training centre based at Nelson's Wharf on the Grand Union Canal in Warwickshire providing a range of waterways related training courses. The customers include organizations such as Canal & River Trust, Environment Agency, and many thousands of individuals. Canal Training is carried out from Nelson's Wharf on the Grand Union Canal on one of the high specification cruiser stern training narrowboats.

Willow Wren Training has a modern, eco-friendly training centre and three training narrowboats - Millie 28ft, Peggy 50ft and Maggie 68ft - along with modern training aids and equipment. The boats are not hired or liveaboards and are used specifically for training. . The training centre was purpose built just a few years ago and is big enough for any course.

willow wren narrowboat

Training Programs


RYA Courses

  • RYA IW Helmsman's Course (2 days): The RYA Inland Waterways Helmsman Course is a two day course held at Nelson's Wharf. This two-day course will take beginners to a proficient standard of helmsmanship required for the RYA certificate.
  • RYA Inland Waterways Helmsman Course On Your Boat: The RYA Inland Waterways Helmsman Own Boat Course is a two day course and can be held on Your boat at Your location.
  • RYA Inland Waterways Crew Course (1 day): This course looks at training delegates to act as crew. It doesn't go to the same depth as the Inland Waterways Helmsman’s Course but it covers basic boat handling and more about how to be a competent crew member.
  • RYA Diesel Engine Maintenance (1 day): This course has been developed by the RYA in response to Person working on engine demand to take the mystery out of the marine diesel engine and to improve reliability by carrying out timely maintenance.
  • VHF SRC Marine Radio: Training for the VHF Short Range Certificate classroom training or on-line interactive training.
  • RYA First Aid and HSE Emergency First Aid at Work (1 day): The course is suitable for anyone requiring the formal RYA First Aid qualification such as RYA Instructors. It also meets HSE requirements for any boating related business and for skippers seeking the MCA Boatmasters License.

WWT Boat Handling Courses

  • WWT Boat Handling Experience Course (1 day): The Boat Handling Experience Course is a one day course held at Nelson's Wharf. It follows the same syllabus as the RYA Inland Waterways Helmsman's Course but doesn't require you to reach an independent level of expertise.
  • Boat Handling Experience Course On Your Boat: The Boat Handling Experience Own Boat Course is a one day course held on your boat at any location.
  • Steam Experience Day (1 day): This is the original and the best steam narrowboat canal experience.

MCA Courses

  • Bespoke Boatmaster Training: There are two tiers of Boatmasters License (BML), Tier 1 and Tier 2 - Tier 1 is for bigger vessels in more challenging waters & Tier 2 is a restricted license which will allow you to operate passenger vessels carrying more than 12 persons or freight vessels or workboats of 24 meters or more in length and generally in a more restricted area.
  • MCA Fire Safety and Personal Survival (Water Safety) (1 day): Fire Safety and Personal Survival Courses are required for the MCA's Ancillary Safety Training Scheme, which is a requirement for Boatmasters License Tier 2.

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