Steam at the Lift


11 May 2024 - 12 May 2024    
10:00 am - 10:00 pm


Anderton Boat Lift & Visitor Centre
Lift Lane, Anderton, Cheshire, CW9 6FW

Event Type

Join us for a stunning steam spectacular when a mighty fleet of traction engines meets a flotilla of vintage steamboats under the Anderton Boat Lift! A Real Ale Festival taking place all weekend hosted by the 1903 steamship The Daniel Adamson.  Delicious hot and cold food & BBQ available all weekend. Licensed bars and craft beers.

Saturday 11 May (10am-10pm) & Sunday 12 May (10am-4.30pm) This event is free to attend*. Around three dozen historic steamboats and traction engines are travelling from all over the country to congregate at Anderton Boat Lift, Cheshire’s historic ‘Cathedral of the Canals’ near Northwich, on Saturday 11 and Sunday 12 May, for its biggest ever spectacular ‘Steam at the Lift’ Festival.

Hosted by the Canal & River Trust charity, the event will feature for the first time a celebratory steamboat flotilla sailing along the River Weaver Navigation from Winsford Marina to Anderton on the Saturday morning, showcasing vintage vessels from the Steamboat Association of Great Britain.

During the festival, visitors will be able to enjoy a wide range of activities from ‘Top of the World’ guided tours of the lift and a Saturday night barbecue to Lego and face painting for children. The Daniel Adamson art deco steamship ‘the Danny’ will be hosting an onboard craft beer festival and tours, and you can watch miniature traction engines in action!

The Edwin Clark trip boat will be offering short cruises up and down the lift, giving visitors a unique view of the stunning 1875 Victorian structure, the world’s first major commercial boat lift. Trust staff will also be on hand to explain the need for a programme of vital repairs and upgrades to the lift as part of the ‘Engineering the Future’ project.

The steamboat flotilla along the River Weaver is a first for Northwich and everyone is invited to join us to view the cruise for what promises to be a truly spectacular sight.

Steamboats will start arriving at Winsford Marina and Anderton Boat Lift on Friday 10 May and then congregate as a flotilla on the River Weaver by the Odeon Cinema in Northwich on Saturday 11 May at 10am to take part in a half hour cruise to the boat lift.

People can enjoy the river spectacle starting in Northwich town centre from 10am onwards and then follow the flotilla’s progress downstream on foot along a connecting riverside footpath. The 30-minute route starts by Cumberland Street car park, behind Asda supermarket, through Carey Park and the path then follows the river, a footbridge over Witton Brook, along the edge of Anderton Nature Park and into the boat lift site.

*Admission to the event and the Anderton Boat Lift visitor centre is free but some activities, such as boat trips and Lego, incur a charge and need to be booked in advance.

For the rest of the 2024 summer season, Anderton Boat Lift and visitor centre will be open six days a week (closed Thursdays), 9.30am – 4.30pm, offering four boat trips a day. Entrance to the visitor exhibition, shop and café are free. .


Have you checked out our upcoming showcase events?