RYA Inland Waterways Training

RYA Inland Waterways Training for boat owners, holidays hirers or anyone who loves boating on canals and rivers
A row of narrowboats moored up for the evening. Brecknock Boat Services

RYA Inland Waterways Helmsman Training

Cruising our network of inland waterways makes for a great holiday or way of life. Inland boats range from small cruisers to narrowboats and barges.

Knowing how to handle the boat properly and navigate locks will give you the confidence you need to relax and make the most of your time on the water.

Our two day RYA Inland Waterways Training courses are suitable for beginners and more experienced boaters. Making sure you have the knowledge and skills to explore the waterways safely and at your own pace. Take a look at the two day course syllabus here.

From our base on the beautiful Monmouthshire and Brecon canal, the training course takes you from the village of Llangynidr, up through five locks and through bridges and tunnels to Talybont-on-Usk. The canal hugs the contours of the hills as it twists through the forests with spectacular views of the Brecon Beacons above and the Usk Valley below.

The Helmsman course is suitable for anyone over the age of 12. No previous experience is necessary.  We aim to spend as much time as possible out on the water so its  going to be hands-on right from the start.
No powerpoint presentations: Guaranteed!

Training is available April – October with a minimum of 2 candidates and a maximum of 3 candidates per course. 

1 Person £380

2 People £650 (Booked together)

3 People £700 (Booked together)

I can also provide RYA Inland Waterways Training courses on your own boat.

Find out more about RYA training on their website RYA Training

Training is carried out on Thursday/Friday most weeks when the canal its open.  You can see our scheduled dates and availability below.

Narrowboats moored

Our Training Route

Dates for this year will be shown here soon. 

Training courses need at least two places booked to run.


The RYA Helmsman certificate is internationally recognised to demonstrate the competence of the holder in the navigation of inland waterways. It is one of the main ways to obtain the International Certificate of Competence (ICC) used on European waterways. If you are new to boat ownership your insurance company may require it.

It takes two full days training to gain the Helmsman certificate. However, if you just want to learn the basic skills to get started safely and don’t require the qualification we can tailor training to suit. There is a minimum of 1 day. 

Helmsman courses start from £650 for two people. (We need a minimum of 2 and a max of 3 candidates to run the course)  For bespoke training please get in touch.

Unlike most things these days the certificate is yours for life. You don’t have to become a member of the RYA but its thoroughly recommended and you don’t have to revalidate your qualification.  We do offer half day refresher sessions for past customers

There are lots of places to stay near to the canal. Here are some suggestions:

The Old Rectory Hotel

The Horseshoe Inn

The Vine Tree

The Bear Hotel

The Dragon Inn

Ty Croeso B&B

The Coach & Horses

Talybont-on -Usk
The White Hart

Find Out More

Please use the short form to contact us and request more information on this certification, or use the BOOK NOW page.