£1 narrowboat transformed into primary school classroom

By Thomas Parkes | Brownhills | Education | Published:

A restored narrowboat bought for £1 is being used as a classroom at a primary school.

Pupils Ellie-May Nash, Megan Williams, Jensen Taylor and Harry Smith at the canal boat classroom

Students at Millfield Primary School in Catshill Road, Brownhills, can board the boat for lessons in art, science, history and business.

The narrowboat is moored behind the school on a stretch of canal.

It was found after staff at the school got in touch with Lichfield and Hatherton Canal Trust, which told them about a boat which required renovation in Birmingham.

It was being kept at the at the Aston Transport Museum.

Inside the boat

The narrowboat was sold to the school for £1 – including transport to Norton Canes Boatyard, where renovations took place.

Shire Oak School and Awards for All gave funding to help renovate the boat, which was brought up to scratch over five years.

It was moored outside the school on a pontoon towed by Laurence Hogg from the canal trust.


The school's headteacher Shaun Brazier said: "We've been using it probably now for a couple of years and it's been gradual – so over the last year we've made it into a classroom.

"I think the children love going on the boat because it's something different.

"It's quite a stimulus to take the kids there where there's swans and other wildlife.

"It was just in conversation with people with the canal trust who mentioned it.

"We have smaller groups – five or six pupils at a time."

Thomas Parkes

By Thomas Parkes
Trainee Reporter - @TParkes_Star

Trainee reporter at the Express & Star, based in Wolverhampton. Got a story? Get in touch at

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