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Canoe Trip Bookings Affected By Coronavirus (COVID-19)

First Published 31st March 2020

Updated 23rd May 2020

We sincerely hope this message finds you & yours well, and that you’re finding a way through this incredibly difficult time.

If you’re Already Booked we hope the information below will be helpful.

Not Booked Yet? Click Through Here for reassuring COVID-19 flexible options.

Here at Canoe2 we’ve been following government guidance throughout. This has led to the temporary closure of our canoe shop at Rushden Lakes. And now, with our 2020 canoe hire season upon us, in some cases we are needing to make alternative arrangements.

The government announcements of May 13th 2020 have allowed us to plan our re-opening as below (subject to confirmation from the Environment Agency that The River Nene is open to commercial hire):

From Monday 1st JuneWe expect to begin “Out-n-Back” Canoe Hire Trips from Rushden Lakes (two, four, or six hour trips) - subject to confirmation from Environment Agency that River Nene is open to commercial craft.

From Saturday 4th July - We expect to fully re-open, for: “Out-n-Back” canoe hire; Multi-Day Trips; Full-Day Downstream Paddles (the ones that include transport); as well as opening our Lake Hire for Pedalos & Katakanus.


So, if you have “out-n-back” paddles booked from 1st June onwards, all should be well, and we look forward to seeing you. And if you haven’t already heard from us directly, you will do soon, with more detail, including any changes we’ve put in place to allow for newly implemented COVID-19 Secure procedures. Changes may include minor start-time alterations, and any issues around government “single-household” policies.

Similarly, we’ll be in touch directly regarding other trips that can’t run during June, to arrange postponement, or other options (as shown toward bottom of this page).


From 4th July onward, we expect most trips to run as booked, subject to minor time changes and the government distancing guidelines in place at that time. Again, we will be in touch with you directly, to either confirm that everything is as booked, or if any changes are required.


An unavoidable impact of COVID-19 on some Canoe2 bookings is a reduction in Comfy Camping options & availability, particularly for larger groups. Throughout the last week of May we will be contacting directly all customers that have booked Comfy Camping trips for 2020. Some smaller bookings of 2 to 4 people will remain largely unchanged, whilst larger groups will be offered free upgrades to alternative accommodation.


We’re all keen to get out on the water as soon as allowed & appropriate to do so, and we’ve worked really hard to make trips happen as soon as possible, within a COVID-19 Secure environment as per government guidelines and Environment Agency river restrictions, without compromising our pre-existing safety procedures, briefings & equipment in any way.

We will continue to follow all guidelines to, as always, ensure the safest possible experience for you, as well as keeping all Canoe2 staff & partner organisations safe, still maintaining our professional & relaxed environment.

These times have been, and continue to be challenging to all, and we look forward to seeing you soon and helping you get away from it all.

As a small family run business, following a path of working with you, our customers, to arrange postponement, and/or free accommodation upgrades where relevant, is an essential way forward, ensuring you get your time on the water, and supporting the community of rural suppliers that help make our trips happen. We thank you for your support in this, and we are pleased to be offering a small range of options and great flexibility…

During the last week of May we will contact all customers booked for a 2020 river trip. Early June bookings will of course be our priority to ensure as much notice as possible of any changes. Then working through the season, prioritising the most affected trips.

For bookings impacted by COVID-19 related restrictions:

- If postponement has been necessary, let us know as soon as you have an alternative date in mind, and we’ll check availability. We are currently making dates available between 1st June and 28th September 2020 (bigger trips from July 4th). Rest assured though, if required we will postpone your trip again, into 2021 where possible if you prefer.

- Or, choose to cancel, and we’ll send you Canoe2 Gift Vouchers to the value of your booking. These will be valid to the end of the 2022 season and can be used by yourself, or anybody you choose to give them to.

- If you don’t think you’ll get together as a group again for your trip, just let us know and we’ll send separate gift vouchers to members of your group to make their own plans

Please take care during these testing times and stay safe. Click Through Here to view the current government guidance on social distancing.

When the time is right, we can’t wait to see you on the river!

Richard & Ian

Ian Blackwell & Richard Nelson

Co-Founder Directors


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