Water taxi will lure shoppers

New pilot Phil Tucker learns ropes from Terry Day, who is  in his fith year as a pilot. Photo: SG2030412-112TW  www.spaldingtoday.co.uk/buyaphoto
New pilot Phil Tucker learns ropes from Terry Day, who is in his fith year as a pilot. Photo: SG2030412-112TW www.spaldingtoday.co.uk/buyaphoto
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SPALDING’S popular water taxi launches again tomorrow with a promotion to bring hundreds more shoppers to the town centre.

The water taxi has always been a link between the Springfields Outlet Shopping centre and the town’s shops. But in a new venture, its bringing coaches into the town centre first.

Simon Clarke, of Broadgate Homes which runs the service, said: “Coaches have always gone straight to Springfields, but we are bringing them into town first, which will be great for shops.

“It should bring a lot more people into the town centre and is already proving popular – we have 20 advance bookings.”

In the six years since its launch, the water taxi has carried 100,000 passengers.

There are four boats and each one offers a 30-minute cruise along the River Welland and Coronation Channel for up to 12 people.

New at the end of last year was the introduction of self-drive hire, where people can book a boat for half or a full day.

Mr Clarke said: “It was really successful, so we are continuing this and will maybe look at getting an extra boat if the demand is there.”

Another way of tempting people into town and away from the TV this summer are Olympic cruises.

Mr Clarke said: “We are looking at installing a TV on the boat so people can enjoy a cruise and not miss any of the sporting action.”

Themed trips continue with princess and pirate days, where children in fancy dress travel free and the boats are decorated as pirate ships.

The service runs until the end of October, 10am to 5pm Monday to Saturdays and 11am-5pm on Sundays.

Embarkation points are behind the South Holland Centre, and in the West Car Park at Springfields.

Tickets are available from Spalding Tourist Information Centre in the Market Place and on the boats.