Richard Parry (centre), chief executive of the Canal & River Trust, is seen at Crick Boat Show handing over a cheque for £600 on behalf of Church Minshull Aqueduct Marina and the businesses based there, to Harry Arnold (left) of the Shropshire Union Fly-boat Restoration Society towards maintaining the historic boat Saturn, accompanied by Robert Parton (right), Director of Aqueduct Marina.

Saturn is the last remaining Shropshire Union fly-boat: they were the ‘express’ boats in the horseboat era – more streamlined hulls than usual, towed by a relay of horses, working day and night to carry perishable cargoes (such as Cheshire cheese) to market. Since being completely rebuilt at a cost of £80,000 by the Shropshire Union Fly-boat Restoration Society, Saturn has been operated for ten years as an educational resource to teach new generations about waterways history, and as a living survival of the fly-boat era. Every year, Saturn visits Church Minshull Marina’s open day, and to return the favour the marina and the businesses based there – including Cheshire Marine Equipment, Andy Russell boat painter, Cheshire Cat Narrowboat Holidays, JRL Boat Painting, Knights Narrowboats, P Tindall Marine Surveys and Russell F Smith boat safety examiner – clubbed together to raise £600 towards keeping Saturn going for future generations to enjoy.

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