Welcome to The Boatmaster Centre

Maritime and Coastguard Agency: MCA accredited course provider

The Boatmaster Centre is a family business operated by Malcolm and Alison Allcard who have both been in the Inland Marine industry since 1976 under the trading names of Top Lock Marine and Top Lock Training, offering a range of services from cruising restaurant to boatbuilding. Since 1998 they have offered an extensive portfolio of Inland Waters boathandling training.

The Boatmaster Centre has been established to cater for the specific needs of skippers of commercial vessels as prescribed by the Maritime and Coastguard Agency’s new Boatmaster regulations. The regulations cover Small Passenger Vessels, Passenger Vessels and Commercial Vessels including workboats. The Boatmaster Centre offers a range of courses suitable for skippers of all types of passenger and freight/work boats operating on Category A, B and non-linked C waters.

Professional training for professional skippers

Malcolm has over sixty years of inland boating experience, over thirty of which have been in the commercial sector. He holds a Tier 1 Boatmaster Licence and is a trainer for the Royal Yachting Association. The Boatmaster Centre is a Maritime and Coastguard Agency ‘Accredited Course Provider’.

Alison Allcard Malcolm Allcard

Alison has an administrative background and has been heavily involved in the day to day running of the marina and training business since its conception. She holds a City & Guilds qualification in I.T.

All commercial boat operators have a responsibility to ensure that their skippers are competent. The Maritime and Coastguard Agency is the regulatory body which ensures that both the vessels and their crew are competent. For passenger vessels carrying more than 12 passengers, skippers must hold the appropriate MCA Boatmaster Licence and the vessel must have an appropriate Passenger Certificate. Small passenger vessels (carrying 12 or fewer passengers) do not require a Passenger Certificate or a skipper who holds a New Boatmaster Licence; however, the MCA require that the skipper holds some proof of competence.