For parents looking for a Christmas activity with a difference, Santa will be swapping his sleigh for a boat this Christmas at Cheshire’s Anderton Boat Lift. Children and their families will have the chance of talking to Santa and receiving a present on a magical Santa Cruise along the picturesque River Weaver. Known as ‘Cathedral of the Canals’, the Lift is run by the Canal & River Trust charity and is located near Northwich on a large terraced site that also benefits from a new bespoke £50,000 play area. A child’s ticket costs £7.95 and an adult’s £5.95. Pre-booking is highly recommended on 01606 786777 or at www.visitchester.digitickets.co.uk. Everyone who pre-book tickets can also take advantage of a Festive Food Deal in the Lift’s tree-top Coffee Shop.
The Anderton Boat Lift is offering these memorable festive trips every weekend during December up until Christmas Eve, as well as on Thursday 21 and Friday 22 December. Boats cast off at 10am, 11am, 12.30pm, 1.30pm and 2.30pm. These magical trips - a treat for both children and adults - are full of festive family fun with games, songs and stories with Santa. Each child will meet Santa and receive a gift that has been specially picked by him. Additional dates for the Santa Cruises are available to nurseries and school groups. For more information, call 01606 786 777.
Boarding from the base of the giant Lift, a masterpiece of high Victorian engineering, visitors both large and small will enjoy the comfort of a modern, heated boat, decorated by elves. They can also enjoy the festive spirit whilst watching the world float by. There is no cost to visit the hands-on exhibition that explains the history of the site with fun interactive displays or to see the rest of the site. Earlier this year, the Lift was awarded Visit England’s ‘Best Told Story’ accolade, recognising the unique story-telling experience that the Lift gives its 130,000 visitors each year.
Graham Wood, Duty Manager, Anderton Boat Lift, said: “Both staff and visitors love the Santa Cruises. There is something very special about seeing the look of pure delight and wonder in children’s faces as they realise that they are not only seeing Santa but going on a boat too. It is something really different and so much more memorable than what is available elsewhere. This year, our youngest visitors can also enjoy using our new £50,000 play area that has been designed to pick up on features of the giant lift. For all these reasons, it promises to a day that creates a wonderful childhood memory.”
The Anderton Boat Lift’s tree-top Coffee Shop, overlooks the grass terraces leading down to the giant lift and is well-known for its fresh, tasty food. For those pre-booking Santa Cruises, the Lift is offering an attractive ‘Festive Food Deal’. For £6.75, adults can enjoy a choice of delicious baguettes, served with chips, salad and a regular hot drink. Children’s meals cost £4.50 and they can choose from chicken strips, pork or vegetarian sausage – all served with beans, chips and a carton of apple or orange drink.
The Anderton Boat Lift is an engineering masterpiece, being the world’s first ever successful boat lift and still in operation today. The Lift sits in a spectacular location between the River Weaver and the Trent & Mersey Canal and is an interesting combination of working historic structure and fun, educational experience. In addition to a tree-top Coffee Shop, there is also a shop full of interesting and unusual gifts - the perfect place to buy Christmas presents.