The whole of Manchester is covered by the Clean Air Act, meaning that there are restrictions on what you can and can’t burn for heating.
I discovered this shortly after it got cold, when a notice from the council was pinned up in the boaters’ hut, stating that the burning of wood was generally not permitted.
Luckily my coal arrived this week. Clarifying the matter with Brian (the coal boat man – he delivers throughout the midland and north canal network…though disappointingly came to Ancoats in a van), I found it was permitted to burn wood for 30 minutes, before changing to a smoke-free fuel like the Excel coal I had just ordered.
So that means there’s plenty of time to get a fire going with paper and wood before getting the coal on. Phew. It’s really great to know that their are air quality regs in the city, but for a moment I was really wondering how on earth I was going to heat my boat.