A Kingston man who repeatedly refused to move his two moored river boats has been convicted, the Environment Agency (EA) revealed today (October 11).

Alistair Trotman, from Kingston, ignored warnings from the Environment Agency that he was reportedly flouting bylaws designed to keep the river safe and clear.

The EA said he broke limits on the time a boat can be moored in place at or near a lock.

The 55-year-old, who represented himself and has consistently denied he did anything wrong, rented out the barges Kupe and Rhythm of River as permanent and temporary accommodation.

The EA said that Trotman placed the former commercial barges "end-to-end in an Environment Agency lay-by at Molesey, one of the busiest locks on the Thames, between October 2018 and the following March".

Surrey Comet:

After refusing to move the boats in March 2019, officials with the EA towed them to a wider mooring on the Thames, with the owner inside Kupe at the time. The EA said that Trotman still refused to come out and speak with the officials despite the action, documents posted into the vessels and phonecalls.

Last week (October 7), Staines magistrates’ court convicted Trotman of causing or allowing Kupe and Rhythm of River to remain in a lock, channel or cut for longer than necessary.

The same court also found him guilty of twice failing to comply with a harbour master notice to move the two boats when directed. The offences were in breach of the Thames Navigation Licensing and General Byelaws 1993 and the Thames Conservancy Act 1932.

He is due to be sentenced on November 24.