Unspoilt by Progress: Update

Today the October edition of Waterways World landed on my mat and, as usual, I immediately dipped into it. My attention was drawn to an item about the epic trip taken twenty years ago by two narrowboats (motor and butty) across The Channel and along the European waterways to the Black Sea. The WW article is an interview of Nick Sanders who took the journey and had the boats built.

I remember the trip being well reported at the time and marvelling at the feat. The boats were named after the Banks's Brewery slogan - Unspoilt by Progress (I and II). This along with their slogan "From the Black Country to the Black Sea" stuck firmly in my mind. I think I recall seeing both boats in the late 90s in the Birmingham area. The new article explains that the motor is still owned by Nick Sanders and is obviously at a marina in the Midlands, but recently that I discovered where the butty is located.

Passing through Stone over the last couple of years, I noticed that the butty owned by boat painter Tina Paramore, and usually moored at Roger Fuller's yard, is named Star but it was Unspoilt by Progress II. This information is proudly displayed on the forecabin but I don't suppose many passing will realise that this well cared for butty has travelled through a war zone and survived a sinking in the River Danube.

Butty Star: Formerly Unspoilt by Progress II at Stone