Previous names

  • 1873 - 1970 BCN 14390
  • 1970 - 1990 Phoenix
  • 1990 - 1998 Strangeness
  • 1998 Seal
Certificate no 3691
Status Registered


Function Cargo Vessel
Subfunction Narrow Boat
Location Erewash Canal
Vessel type Canal Boat
Current use Private use
Available to hire No
Available for excursions No
Info required No


Builder Hickman, Alfred, Bilston
Built in 1873
Hull material Iron
Number of decks
Number of masts
Propulsion Motor
Number of engines 1
Primary engine type Diesel
Boiler type
Boilermaker None


Breadth: Beam
0.83 feet (0.25 m)
3.00 feet (0.91 m)
Air Draft
To be confirmed
Length: Overall
54.00 feet (16.46 m)
Tonnage: Gross



BCN 14390 now named SEAL was built in 1873 by Alfred Hickman in Bilston for the Great Western Railway Company, and is what is commonly known as a MkII Bantock.  It operated as a horse drawn day boat taking goods from factories on the Birmingham Canal Navigations to railway interchange basins on the canal system where good were offloaded onto trains. 

Sometime in the 1970's it was motorised,  given a more modern stern end and named PHOENIX and the stern end was used to form another boat named OMEGA

At some point in the 1990's it was known as STRANGENESS before being sold in 1998 in a poor condition to a previous owner Richard Porter (a boatman) who restored it as a cargo boat with blue tops and changed its name to SEAL in homage to an old boatman who he had worked with who lived on FMC Seal.  In 2006, Porter also added a cabin. 


Key dates

  • 1873

    Built in 1873 by Thomas Bantock & Co in Bilston

  • 1970'S

    Renamed Phoenix

  • 1990

    Renamed Strangeness

  • 1998

    New owner and renamed Seal

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