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What is AINA 2018-04-26T16:00:05+00:00

AINA is the industry membership body in Great Britain for organisations with statutory or other legal responsibility for the management, maintenance and operation of navigable inland waterways for navigation.  Collectively, we regard such bodies as ‘Inland Navigation Authorities’.  In discharging their duties, navigation authorities deliver widespread public benefits.

AINA is the industry membership body in Great Britain for organisations with statutory or other legal responsibility for the management, maintenance and operation of navigable inland waterways for navigation.  Collectively, we regard such bodies as ‘Inland Navigation Authorities’.  In discharging their duties, navigation authorities deliver widespread public benefits.

AINA was set up in 1996 with strong encouragement from government to provide, for the first time ever, a single voice on waterway management issues.  The broad purpose of AINA is to facilitate the management, maintenance and development of inland waterways as an economic, social and environmental resource.

AINA’s members drawn from the public, private and third sectors.  They include the Canal & River Trust, the Environment Agency and the Broads Authority in addition to, local government authorities, private canal companies, internal drainage boards and a variety of public and charitable trusts.

Most AINA members are defined as navigation authorities by their own Acts of Parliament (some of them more than 250 years old) which regulate the operation of their waterways.  Others, such as some local government authorities, have inherited the status of navigation authority through various statutes.  Between them, AINA members have responsibility for over 5,500 km of navigable, inland waterways which include canals, river navigations and lakes.

Since its inception AINA has demonstrated that by bringing navigation authorities together to share good practice, expertise and professionalism and to speak with one voice when required to do so, it can deliver significant benefits to all navigation authorities, large and small, and also to their partners across the waterways sector.  AINA has:

  • delivered a valuable resource of reports giving good practice guidance across a wide range of waterway management and operational issues
  • determined common, industry-wide standards
  • delivered, in partnership with regulators and stakeholders, industry codes of practice to facilitate pragmatic and effective industry self-regulation with the effect of achieving significant cost savings for Members or staving off mandatory regulation which would have incurred considerably greater costs for the industry

AINA has become established in the psyche of all parties with interest in the waterways.  It has enjoyed regular contact with senior government officials and Ministers in Whitehall and has hosted well-attended national conferences on key issues affecting the waterways.  The foundation for all AINA’s achievements is its unique ability to represent all navigable inland waterways across Great Britain.