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Much is made of the “fact” that lock sizes on the connected waterway system of England and Wales mean anything bigger than a 57ft narrowboat makes that impossible. There are a good number of people who have managed to negotiate everything in a 60ft narrowboat, although on the Calder and Hebble, the Huddersfield Broad Canal and the Ripon Canal (all marked in green on the above map) they have had to remove bow and stern fenders and do one or two locks backwards. I negotiated everything with a 58ft 6in narrowboat in the early 1990s without any significant problems.
If you are going to be aboard for many months at a time, take a look at the above map and consider just how little of the waterways is not possible with a 62ft boat, or indeed a 70ft boat. To gain extra living space for the sake of a small amount of waterway may be a worthwhile sacrifice, and you can always hire a boat to cover the missing bits if you so wish.
For more information the IWA have a useful page with links to information about every British waterway