About us

Updated October 2009

Well that’s both of us fully retired now.


Update: June 2009

Alan And Frances have stopped working, Frances has retired and Alan is in no mans land possibly consulting possibly retired, will up date this when the jury returns.


Alan and Frances Riley are both working part time from the boat with internet connection and mobile phones. We have been cruising the canal system since the end of June 2008 and hope to travel the whole system at least until we have had enough. We have two children and a brand new grandson.


I am Technical Director for a conditioning monitoring company servicing the power industry. I have been working part time since the end of June 2008. I am originally from Northumberland.

I have many interests, Frances thinks too many. I play the keyboard and recorders, ham radio, chess, cycling, reading and of course narrow boating. I love messing about with anything mathematical and recently gained an honours degree in Mathematical Science from the Open University.


I am a Foreign Rights Sales Executive (at large) for a publishing company, selling rights in Italy, Germany and Denmark. In my spare time when not working or moving along the canal I enjoy reading and knitting, gardening (restricted to our roof box at present), walking and cycling. I am a New Zealander.

Lazy Days

We bought Lazy Days in February 2005. The boat was 6 months old and had had one owner; the engine had 58 hours on the clock so the boat was as good as new. We liked the layout which is opened planed as can be seen on the layout below.



The following photos show how the boat was before we moved in.

View form Front door

View form Front door







I will add some photos later showing how it is now

17 Responses to About us

  1. Lynne says:

    Frances is also extremely modest. She is a brilliant sales person, and the brightest, most positive, inspiring person I think I have ever known.

    I love her to bits as you may well tell….

  2. bon says:

    So we’ve been sending Christmas cards to the ‘old place’ all these years and instead you’ve been joyriding the waves!!

    What have you to say in your Defence (1. e4 e6 2. d4 d5 3.exd5 exd5.)

  3. dundustin says:

    cant wait to see the up to date photos.
    I am putting togethe rmy own blog of my ideal interior layout and equipment im planning on installing.


  4. nblazydays says:

    Brian, well hello it has been sometime since we last spoke. Yes the French is my defence.

    Dundustin, I have looked at your site and will follow your progress, we certainly have no regrets it’s a great life.

  5. Lynne says:

    It is astonishing what can be crammed in. Do you find you have enough water for washing/cooking etc or do you have to ration it?

  6. nblazydays says:

    We have no problem as the water tank holds 200 gallons and that lasts us for a couple of weeks. There are lots of places where you can fill up with water.

  7. Lynne says:

    No stinky people there then, LOL

    Is there anything you really really miss from landlubbery times? (other than the car maybe…)

  8. nblazydays says:

    No, and we don’t really miss the car. In fact not having a car opens up a whole new world of public transport. Mind you I am glossing over the vagaries of PT, but in general I really enjoy travelling on the Bus/Train.

  9. Lynne says:

    that’s only because you have your bus pass…….

  10. Chloe says:

    Frances, I read your blog every now and again and every time I am green with envy. I couldn’t possibly read it every day, we’d have to sell the kids and buy a boat.
    I can’t wait for retirement and I hope we get the live the dream as you and Alan do.

  11. Harvie Porter says:

    Alan and Frances, Ah, the miracle of the internet. My son is heading to Hull next week to do some consulting and as he is heading to Britain, I happened to think of the two of you and wonder where you were. I found your ham radio entry on CallBook and the sales agreement on your house. Digging deeper I found a link for the Watford Chess Club (I remembered Alan as a Chess buff) and there was a link to this blog there. I’m glad to hear there is still some adventure left in the two of you. My adventuring has been on hold for a number of years, with the exception of a jaunt up into Labrador two summers ago. I wrote a blog at harvieslabradortrip@blogspot.com

    I look forward to reading you blog as I am excited to write to you first. Hopefully, you are still checking the comments. Let me know how you are doing.

    Harvie Porter – Fellow cyclist and real ale enthusiast! BTW – Did I ever tell you my story about Brian Darwood and Padang, Sumatera? H

  12. nblazydays says:

    Well what a coincidence Harvie, it was only the other day that we were thinking about you. My Dad was visiting and he was telling us about his experience with your bees. We are hoping to set up a couple of hives soon.

    It is great to hear from you after all this time, we are still in touch with Brian he lives in Sydney but we do see him from time to time, we visited him last year and he came over here a couple of years before that and spent a week travelling along the river Avon with us.

    How long will your son be over in the UK? Will he have time to pop down to Somerset? He will be nearer to my Dad when in Hull and I am sure that my Dad would love to meet up with him.

    Now that we have your email address we will keep in touch.

    All the best

    Alan and Frances

  13. I write for Towpath Talk and would like to mention your nifty bike rack arrangement. If you could email me I’d be very grateful. Many thanks.

  14. execelsior says:

    I am writing a series of pieces on Samuel Johnson. I would like to reproduce one of your photographs of Litchfield Cathedral in the second part of my series:


    I will give you full credit for the photograph and a link to your website.

    Please let me know via my website if you are agreeable and how you would like to be mentioned.

    With thanks.

    Charles S.P. Jenkins

    • nblazydays says:


      Yes you can use the photo, I had a quick look at your site and wasn’t sure where to contact you. The photo was taken by Alan Riley.

      Good luck with the project and I will follow it with interest.


      • Timo says:

        Hi, looking at your nb, I know you have moved on, what do you think is a realistic price now, it was selling for a k under its current value four yrs ago abnb are currently selling it.

  15. nblazydays says:


    I still think that it is a good price, it is £500 more than 4 years ago but I think prices are on the up again, It is a beautiful boat and has a great looking line from the bow . It was quite nostalgic looking at it and we do miss being out and about on the cut.

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