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Bristol Ferry Boats

44 The Grove, Bristol, BS1 4RB

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Access Guide

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  • Bristol Ferry Boats is a community company providing a water bus service every day of the year, except Christmas Day, on a figure of eight route from the city centre to Hotwells and Temple Meads Station. Currently the first service is at 10:00 and the last return is at 17:40 from the city centre. There are 17 stops.
  • As well as the water bus service the company provide private hire and public trips such as a wildlife trip through the Avon Gorge, sail with Santa and regular trips to Beeses Tea Gardens for Sunday lunch.
  • Bristol Ferry Boats have five boats one of which, Brigantia, has some provisions for wheelchair users. Independence and Margaret are small open boats with a canopy, Matilda has a heated cabin and an open section and Emily has a heated cabin and is totally covered (low headroom). Usually two boats are on the water bus run each day. Wheelchair users are asked to check in by telephone a couple of days in advance so that the appropriate vessel can be made available.
  • None of the ferry stops will be able to guarantee level access. The harbour level changes by about 20cm over a period of a week or more. The harbour is 'scoured' on a regular basis to remove the silt as that causes the difference in level. The crews of all the boats are able to offer assistance. Wheelchair users boarding Brigantia can use the platform lift. It is of limited size so it may not be possible to accommodate larger chairs and scooters and heavy electric chairs.


  • There is a bus stop within 150m (164yds) of the venue.
  • The nearest National Rail station is Bristol Temple Meads.

Brigantia - Accessible Boat

  • Brigantia is the largest of the ferry boats and has some provision for disabled passengers. She is easily recognised as she carries Gromit as a figurehead.
  • The wheelchair lift (photographs 2 - 6) can be deployed to bring wheelchairs to deck level and into the cabin. The lift platform is 142cm wide and 76cm deep. The section from the platform to the boat edge is mounted in front of the cabin and put in place by the crew as required.
  • The lift overcomes four deep steps which are 96cm wide.
  • The heated cabin has padded seats and a small galley for refreshments on trips (Photographs 7 & 8). There is a flushing toilet beside the galley with a 90cm wide, outward opening, door allowing some extra space in the cubicle.

Emily - Standard Boat

  • Emily is one of the smaller boats. She has two deep steps from the landing stage with a handrail going up the right hand side.
  • The crew assist passengers to board and disembark.
  • The benched seating available is not padded and the cabin is heated.

Accessible Toilet

  • There are not accessible toilet facilities within this venue.

Standard Toilet(s) (Brigantia)

Additional Info

  • Staff do not receive disability awareness / equality training.
  • A bowl of water can be provided for an assistance dog.