Saturn Fly-boat

Waterways Heritage Afloat

Saturn is living history. She offers a unique opportunity for pupils to experience the working environment and conditions of the canal boatmen and their families. They can visit her on their local canal as she travels the canals of the North West Midlands and North Wales.

The Saturn Project team guide the children as they visit the crew's cabin, the cargo hold and look at how the horses were harnessed and worked the boats. They also lead sessions on the life of children on the working boats and canal related arts and crafts.

A visit to Saturn makes an exciting focus for local history projects, tying in with the surrounding buildings and structures on the canal. She is also a good basis for a transport or social history project. Aspects of Science, Maths, Geography, Design & Technology and the Arts are all part of her presentation. Her canal environment is rich in wildlife.

Organising a Visit

Saturn travels the canals of the North West Midlands and North Wales from March to October. See the calendar below to get an idea of when she is going to be near your school. 

To book a visit contact Liz Grundy on 07811926365 or e-mail schools@saturnflyboat.org.uk. Liz will arrange time and place and volunteers. We can also help with your risk assessment.

We do make a charge of £1 per pupil which goes towards the maintenance of the boat for future generations of school visits.

Check Saturn's Facebook page for reports & feedback from our School Visits.

2024 Calendar

Chester Tower wharf
Afternoon of Thursday 28th    
NWM at Ellesmere Port
30th March to 1st April
Norbury Canal Festival
4th-6th May
Ellesmere schools
14th -15th May
Trevor display
18th-19th May
Trevor schools
20th -24th May
Trevor display
25th -27th May
Middlewich FAB    
14th -16th June
Lymm schools
18th -21st June
Lymm transport festival
22nd -23rd June
At Anderton
25th June -5th July
Gnosall canal festival
19th -21st July
Audlem Historic boat gathering
27th -28th July
Ellesmere for August

Whitchurch Canal festival
31st Aug -1st Sept


Some dates will be fixed events where Saturn will be on show but which can offer a good opportunity for local schools to visit. 

Between these dates the boat will be on the move from one venue to the next and will be available for visits from schools en route.

"You have a wonderful team of people on Saturn , they all connected so well with the children at their level." Market Drayton teacher.

Learning Resources

The boat - Saturn is complete with the crew’s cabin, cargo hold and all the gear for horse towing and working the boat. She makes an excellent basis for a transport or social history project and links in to local history for those schools near the canal. Being on the canal system she will also tie in with geography or map studies. The decoration of the boat makes a colourful subject for art work and the life of the people who worked her a rich focus for creative writing. 

The people – As well as the volunteers who can bring the boat and the working canals to life, we have others who can demonstrate the crafts associated with the boats such as decorative painting, ropework, lace making and rag rug making.

Our Factsheets - We have a number of useful resource Factsheets for free download about Saturn and Canal Life, see our About Saturn pages.

Our Partners – We work with The Canal & River Trust education department and their Canal & River Explorers scheme. Their webpages http://canalrivertrust.org.uk/explorers/teachers contain information on other aspects of the canal system.