Category Archives: Product Review

We’ve Got a Date To Move Aboard!

Yes! We’ve got a date to move aboard!

Express Delivery

I’ve just got off the phone from the marina and everything is on track for the weekend of the 28th April. The boat will be taken out of the water late afternoon of Wednesday 25th, a series of mechanics & assorted tradespersons will swarm over it from roof to bilge, working their various kinds of magic and all being well, we should take delivery Monday 30th 🙂

Suddenly, it’s all very real.

A Canal Visit

We visited the Kennett and Avon canal yesterday.

Daste - B-O-A - canal towpath I image

Firstly, we visited Bradford-On-Avon for breakfast at The Lock Inn Cafe and then to gongoozle at the lock. Two narrowboats passed through together – A hire boat paired with a 70ft Traditional with a Lister HR2 engine (a god amongst engines). The thoughts that we will have to manage this in three week’s time were sobering. However, I’m sure a tot of rum will help with that (only joking, it will probably be two 😉 ).


Date - Great Bedwyn image
Great Bedwyn Wharf

Secondly, we visited Great Bedwyn and its canal wharf. It’s mooring of barges & narrowboats, bridges and a lock in the warmth & sunshine of a snatch of Spring, re-enforced  why we’re doing this thing. We were inspired to visit there by pouring over Jim Batty‘s excellent book; Narrowboat Life – Discover Life Afloat on the Inland Waterways from Bloomsbury Publishing Ltd. If you are contemplating a life on the ocean wave canal, or just curious there’s no better resource. It gives a real insight.


Just think, with that date – it’s only a few weeks time and we’ll be walking those towpaths for real!


Date - Great Bedwyn - mu image


rp – peace and narrowboats

Product Review – Kingfisher Toothpaste

This is the first, of what is hopefully going to be an on-going product review series of Earth-friendly, People-friendly products. These reviews will tie in closely with our reasons for living on a narrowboat. They will encompass items that help towards leaving a smaller footprint on the earth so that hopefully, at least some of it is left for people in the future.



Living on a narrowboat brings with it certain ‘limitations’ shall we say. This is in no way a negative, in fact, we think (and hope) it will be defining, liberating and beneficial. The limitations are directly in line with our philosophy of the way we want to live.

Some of the limitations I’m thinking of are

  • Getting rid of water waste. Grey Water i.e. washing up, sink, bath water is allowed to be put into the canal whereas Brown Water i.e. the toilet is definitely not allowed into the canal
  • Not wanting to put noxious chemicals into the canal infrastructure and affect the wildlife ecosystems that are in place.
  • Not having space to store up waste for recycling. We will recycle what we use but the sheer physical lack of space precludes bin bags piling up on the fore-deck.
  • Being more economical with resources – due to financial limitations and again, due to space limitations.
    Being responsible for sourcing water, heating & energy and removing waste.

What this means is that we will have to Reduce more of what we use, Reuse everything we possibly can and Upcycle before Recycling, where we can’t.


Product Review – Product X

The products in question for review will be items we currently use, items we are starting to use and items we want to use/are thinking of using in the near future.

Product Review - Kingfisher - Toothpaste I image
This is the Way we Brush Our Teeth

I’m starting with Product X, where X = Kingfisher Toothpaste. Normal toothpaste, whilst it is not a product containing the deadliest of chemicals on the planet, I think we can do better (I suppose a by-product would be swans with really shiny teeth).

We purchased the product at earthfare in Glastonbury. The company; Kingfisher who make it started in 1988 and focus upon making ethical tooth care products. The Kingfisher Mint Natural Toothpaste – Fluoride Free’s active ingredients are as follows

  • Calcium Carbonate,
  • Glycerin,
  • Aqua,
  • Sodium Lauroyl Sarcosinate,
  • Hydrated Silica,
  • Cellulose Gum,
  • Mentha Piperita,
  • Citrus Limonum,
  • Foeniculum Vulgare,
  • Limonene



So, how does it perform? It’s good. It cleans our teeth and the strong mint taste leaves them feeling fresh, even using a small amount of it. The tube is a good size (I object to paying the earth for a small amount of product just because it’s ‘Eco-friendly’) and packaging is from ‘card made from sustain-ably managed forests’. It has a modern ‘stand upright’ cap and the only thing I could say about it is that when you take the cap off, there’s a bit of toothpaste flow. It’s minimal and hardly worth mentioning but I have to put something in this blog 😉

This particular product doesn’t contain Fluoride but Kingfisher do sell a mint toothpaste with Fluoride. They also sell other flavoured products including; Fennel, Aloe Vera with other flavours mixtures, and even a Charcoal version so plenty of variety. See the full range at their website.

Their products are Vegan, Gluten Free and GM Free and have BDHF approval.



We recommend this toothpaste. The Fluoride version will probably be our next purchase and we will probably intersperse non-Fluoride with Fluoride to keep those teeth in tip top condition. We will definitely be buying some more.

All in all, I think the swans will be very happy.

Product Review - kingfisher Toothpaste image



Kingfisher Toothpaste can be purchased at most Health Food Shops. As mentioned above, we bought ours at earthfare, Glastonbury. It is also available from Waitrose and Holland and Barrett. It can be purchased online from sites such as Green People. As ever, however you should shop around for offers.

Well, that’s the first one over with. What do you think? Was this of use? Did I cover what a review should have? I’d be interested in your comments.


rp – peace and narrowboats