Leeds Dock water taxi


I was walking home recently when I noticed the two Leeds Dock water taxis, ee & Drie, tied up by the side of the canal. It gave me pause to think about the success of them.

Judging that depends on what you thought their purpose is/was. This in itself isn’t clear because I do not know whether the have been scrapped permanently, or whether they are just talking a very long holiday. As things stand though, they do not seem to have been running for over a month.

The new owners of Leeds Dock, Allied London (not a name that would endear yourself to Northerns), made a big slash about them. Pun intended of course. They put together videos of all the ways you could get from the city centre to the dock, including taking the water taxi.

Nobody did though. Unless you had guests visiting from Finland. This is not at all surprising. It is not any faster than walking. You would have to get to the station, then wait for the boat, then take a slow cruise down the canal.

This was not the fatal flaw though. The problem is inconsistently. They often didn’t run. How would you know if they were running or not? That is unclear. Certainly unclear enough that you wouldn’t make plans around them running. On one occasion I walked in the office to find an email telling me they were not running today. A bit late. People are put off by buses because they are sometimes late. But they run every day, to a timetable, and have done for decades. There is no such faith to be had in the water taxis.

Secondly, and here is the hilarious part, they don’t run when it is too wet. When there is ‘appalling weather’ such as a lot of rain (not flooding, which is perhaps more understandable – though it is a boat!) they stop running. Surely that is the one time you would want to use them in an attempt to stay dry?

I hedged at the start of this post by asking about the intent. It could be that the water taxis are designed as a promotional item. An attempt to provide the dock with some glamour and convince companies to move down there. If so, it has been successful. Sky are now down there with other companies likely to follow.

However, as a method of transportation, if it hasn’t already been scrapped, it seems only a matter of time. The only way I think they are likely to be a success is if at very least they run every day, come rain, come shine. With an emphasis on the rain, that does come most days.



Don't have time to check my blog? Get a weekly email with all the new posts. This is my personal blog, so obviously it is 100% spam free.


Tags: , , , ,

This entry was posted on Monday, February 1st, 2016 at 10:34 am and is filed under Thoughts. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.