Marriott's Way & Other Passenger Boats

Traditional Techniques: NarrowBoat, Winter 2012

Hugh Potter

Hugh Potter follows a passenger boat journey by Pickfords from Liverpool to London in 1834 and looks at packet boats in general

The catalogue entry for an 1834 diary held in the Wigan Archives tantalisingly indicates that it includes a journey made by boat from Liverpool to London. A visit to the record office, which is actually in Leigh, revealed this to be true. In the fashion of the day, Mr John Marriott of Liverpool wordily entitled his diary “A Journey to London with S.A. Marriott in search of health, accompanied by Louisa and Margaret in search of pleasure, and followed by Tom Hobson in search of his wife”. The diary covers 8th to 27th October 1834, but sadly the author concentrates on the pleasures to be found once the party arrived in London, rather than on the journey itself. The author explains “Sarah Ann was so ill, that to travel on wheels seemed impossible; and we therefore engaged Pickford Bros private boat to convey us from Runcorn by canal. We set out on Wednesday 8th October 1834 from Runcorn and were accommodated as shown. “Our voyage afforded infinite entertainment a…

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