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Ticket Boat Trips

While away some time aboard one of our trip boats and experience the tranquillity of the Chelmer & Blackwater Navigation in rural Essex, or see Chelmsford City Centre from a new angle.

Boat Trips on the Chelmer & Blackwater Navigation

Hop on a boat from Paper Mill Lock near Chelmsford, or from the kiosk (just above Daisy Meadow car park) at Heybridge Basin, near Maldon. 

Trips operate most days from Good Friday until the end of October, usually from 10.00 a.m. to 4.00 p.m.  Trips depart every hour, on the hour, from both sites, and last just under an hour.  Trips do not run in poor weather or on Mondays in October.

Our vessels are fully equipped to cater for passengers in wheelchairs and pushchairs

Trip prices (2024 rates) are:

  • £8.00 adults
  • £7.00 old age pensioners (bus passes to be shown)
  • £7.00 children aged under 16 (excluding babes-in-arms, for which no charge)
  • £28 family ticket (for up to four people)

You can book tickets in person or by phone from Daisy Meadow Kiosk (07943 025 846) or Paper Mill office (01245 226 245) – seven days per week.

We sometimes also offer two-hour ticket trips from available Paper Mill on board Victoria – Dates and details from the Paper Mill office.

Departure locations

Paper Mill Lock

North Hill, Little Baddow, Chelmsford, CM3 4BS

Heybridge Basin

Daisy Meadow Sales Kiosk, Heybridge Basin, Maldon, CM9 4RR

Backnang Square, Chelmsford

The Pontoon, Backnang Square, Chelmsford

Our boats


Up to 43 Guests

Victoria is perfect for wedding receptions, celebrations and group outings. The boat can accommodate up to 36 guests seated for food or 43 standing and includes a qualified skipper and crew. Our licensed bar also serves hot and cold drinks. Trips depart from Paper Mill Lock.


Up to 12 Guests

Albert is a 13.7m narrowboat, ideal for families and groups of up to 12 people and includes a trained skipper (with crew if necessary) and normally operates from Paper Mill Lock from Good Friday until the end of October.  Trips do not run in poor weather or on Mondays in October.

Blackwater Dawn

Up to 12 Guests

Blackwater Dawn is a widebeam trip boat for up to 12 people with an open forward seating area. Normally operating daily ticket trips from Daisy Meadow Car Park at Heybridge Basin, from Good Friday until the end of October.  Trips do not run in poor weather or on Mondays in October.  The boat is also available for charter bookings and early evening hire.

City Boat

Up to 12 guests

City Boat is Dutch-manufactured polyethylene boat that is reputed to be virtually unsinkable and is designed for recreational trips.  It has an electric outboard and low headroom so we can under the low bridges across Chelmsford City’s rivers.  The boat has been sponsored by Chelmsford Business Improvement District to provide some additional life and colour to the city centre, and offers the opportunity to view the central area from a new perspective.  We hope to run trips weekends and school holidays in 2024.

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