A terminally ill man who has lived on a boat for seven years says he is a prisoner in his own home after mooring problems left him stuck in silted mud in Horninglow.
Chris Brown, 63, has stayed at Horninglow Basin with his wife Val, 61 for the past few years, but after returning a month ago, the couple have been plagued by a string of problems.
Mr Brown, who recently underwent a serious operation to have a brain tumour removed, said he wants to make the most of his time and get "out and about." But problems including litter and literally being "stuck in the mud" have left him stranded.
He said: "We have been on the boat for a good seven years and I love that lifestyle. We have been to Horninglow Basin before and we tend to go out travelling all summer and come back during the winter.
"We came back about a month ago and struggled to get on the moorings because it was covered in filth and rubbish and we literally got stuck in the mud. But I need to be here, near to the electric, my doctors and my family. In 2014 I was diagnosed with oesophageal cancer which has now spread. I have just had a brain tumour removed so this is the last thing I need.
"All I want is some normality and I would like to get out and about with my wife while I still can, not stuck here.
"My Macmillan nurse is absolutely disgusted that we have to live in this state, especially when we are paying rent."
Mr Brown, a former builder who also ran a theatre on the Isle of Wight, said he has no choice but to stay where put on their 57 feet long narrowboat due to the nearby amenities. He believes there is "no chance we would get back there" if they left the site.
He said: "We want to get out but we can’t because we won’t be able to get back in. Every time the boat turns it washes mud everywhere and we are literally sat in two inches of mud above the water.
"We are paying for something that isn’t useable for goodness sake."
The pair, who between them have seven children, say the river has needed dredging for years and have called for an urgent clean-up of the area.
Mr Brown said: "The Canal and River Trust knows my situation because I have contacted them a few times. We have left it for as long as we can and gone nearly a month but we cannot live like this. I am at the end of my tether.
"I called them twice in two days and the only time they responded was when I fell over in the pontoon as it is really slippery when it is wet and they said they will steamclean it but nothing has been done.
"We would like to see all the rubbish cleared out from around the boat because it has never been this bad before. This is a £40,000 boat which apart from being unusable right now is sat on two inches of mud which will no doubt cause rust and airpockets, meaning it may have to be replated.
"I just don’t think it is good enough. We pay our money and play by the rules. All I want is to not be trapped in this one spot."
A spokesman for the Canal and River Trust, said: "We were really sorry to hear about the problems that Mr Brown’s been having with his mooring. We have offered to tow him to a different berth within the basin which should hopefully be more suitable for him.
"We are pleased that he should now be able to get out and about once more."