AN OXFORD boater who was the victim of an arson attack is to discuss a proposal to help the boating community with the city council.

After telling the Mail about a December attack which left his boat badly burned, Alan Joyce suffered further yobbery, which he blames on anti-boater feeling.


His boat was keyed days after a front page story outlined how his home and many of his possessions were left burnt, wet and stinking of smoke.

READ AGAIN: Oxford canal boater says arsonists tried to kill him

But now the 57-year-old Oxford business owner is due to outline his plan to help the boating community to Alex Hollingsworth, the board member with responsibility for planning and transport.


Mr Joyce is hoping that around 40 mooring positions – which boaters can use temporarily on a rolling basis – can be installed.

They would pay a fee and keep their towpath section tidy before moving on to another position.

He says a charge of around £2,000 per year would mean the investment makes economic sense – particularly when compared with the cost of building houses for the same number of people – and would encourage the various landowners involved to get on board with the scheme.

Mr Hollingsworth told Mr Joyce he and the council’s waterways co-ordinator, Tim Wiseman, would be ‘very happy’ to meet. Mr Wiseman is identifying ways to increase the number of Oxford moorings, an ambition in the city’s Local Plan.

Though he called the idea ‘an interesting one’, he claimed it may face ‘practical difficulties’.

Mr Hollingsworth added: “The purpose of the meeting is to have an informed discussion about what is possible, and what work is already under way.”

Mr Joyce also received a response from Oxford West and Abingdon MP Layla Moran, who called his idea 'interesting' and offered to arrange a meeting with a Lib Dem city councillor.

The Environment Agency said it would be happy to comment on the council’s plans for moorings once details are confirmed. The Canal and River Trust did not immediately respond to a request for comment.