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Canadian canoes arrive in Norwich as public get chance to pedal down River Wensum

PUBLISHED: 12:01 23 June 2015 | UPDATED: 14:11 23 June 2015

Joe Rutland who has started the Norwich Canoe Hire Company on the River Wensum. Pictured with his wife Katherine in one of their pedal canoes.
Picture: ANTONY KELLY

Joe Rutland who has started the Norwich Canoe Hire Company on the River Wensum. Pictured with his wife Katherine in one of their pedal canoes. Picture: ANTONY KELLY

Archant Norfolk 2015

What do you get when you cross a bicycle with a canoe?

Joe Rutland who has started the Norwich Canoe Hire Company on the River Wensum. Pictured with his wife Katherine in one of their pedal canoes.
Picture: ANTONY KELLYJoe Rutland who has started the Norwich Canoe Hire Company on the River Wensum. Pictured with his wife Katherine in one of their pedal canoes. Picture: ANTONY KELLY

That is the question 27-year-old Joe Rutland asked when he first designed his unusual pedal-powered watercraft in 2013.

Two years later the young engineer is hoping to introduce his unique Canadian canoes to the public.

He said: “I’ve always had a long interest in making bikes and I thought a pedal-powered boat would be a fun thing to have a go at.

“There are similar designs elsewhere in the Broads, but this is Norwich’s first chance to have a go on one.”

This weekend people will be able to pedal their way down the River Wensum as Mr Rutland launches his new venture.

The tandem canoes feature a central drive, wooden seating and a rudder.

The absence of an oar means that people will have their hands free to enjoy a picnic or take a picture while travelling across the water.

Mr Rutland said he had invested around £20,000 in his new business, which is located on a small jetty near Norwich Playhouse.

As well as a selection of pedal craft, he also has normal Canadian canoes available to the public.

Norwich Canoe Hire is open this Saturday and Sunday from 10am to 6pm.

It costs £15 to hire a canoe for one hour and £20 for an hour on a pedal craft.

For more information, visit www.norwichcanoe.co.uk

Do you have an unusual business venture? Call Luke Powell on 01603 772684.

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