What is a narrowboat leisure mooring?

A leisure mooring is a safe place to leave your narrowboat when you aren’t using it. Moorings at Union Wharf offer some additional facilities:

  • Friendly, family-run marina
  • Free Wi-Fi
  • Electrical hook up included
  • Facilities block including shower, Elsan point, rubbish disposal
  • Pumpout by arrangement for an additional charge
  • Gas bottles
  • Car parking
  • Restaurant on-site


Union Wharf Marina Market Harborough

What is the difference between a leisure mooring and a residential mooring?

A residential mooring means that you can live aboard your narrowboat at a specific site. The Canal and River Trust has to grant approval for this and local authority planning permission is also required. Such moorings are in relatively short supply. Those operated by the CRT are generally advertised on www.watersidemoorings.com.

At Union Wharf, we offer leisure moorings. These are perfect for those who don’t live aboard, but return to their boat to take it out whenever they wish. It’s lovely to take a day trip to the pubs and cafes at Foxton and back. And we are perfectly-placed for longer cruises around the heart of England. A leisure mooring does allow boaters to spend occasional nights on their boat at the marina. It also offers year-round facilities to make boating easier, such as pump out, showers and electricity hook up.

Our family-run marina is in a peaceful residential area of Market Harborough on the edge of town, a short walk from local shops and amenities. The location means that boaters feel safe leaving their pride-and-joy. Hire boats operate from here all year round, so there are lots of people on site, even in winter.


Where can I go from Union Wharf Marina?

Map of canal network near Market Harborough

The marina is located at the end of the Harborough Arm, a short stretch of the Grand Union Canal (Leicester line) running from the bottom of Foxton Locks. It is a popular with narrowboat hirers because of its location. This is a rural and picturesque setting with plenty of navigational features including the famous Foxton Locks themselves.


Operating foxton locks going up

From Foxton, you can choose to travel northwards towards Leicester which is a journey of three or four days. It takes you through tranquil agricultural landscapes and eventually leads you through the bustling heart of the city.

Going up through Foxton Locks takes themselves takes less than an hour, which opens up 22 miles of lock free cruising. From here you can head to the canal heritage hubs of Stoke Bruene or Braunston, and on through Northamptonshire or Oxfordshire.

The “Leicester Ring” offers opportunity for further exploration and takes around a fortnight. This route is the gateway to cruising around many areas of the Midlands including the Trent through Nottinghamshire or the historic Grand Union route between Birmingham and London.

You can get a flavour of our location through the local routes and itineraries created for our holiday narrowboat hirers here.


How much does a leisure mooring cost?

Our prices and Ts&Cs are updated on our website here.

If you are interested in finding out more about availability for leisure moorings, pop in, email us or call us on 01858 432123. We also offer overnight moorings for those visiting short term, and winter moorings.

Union Wharf marina office