A BOATER who is relying almost entirely on the sun to power a near three week trip says his journey is 'proof of concept'.

Tim Knox has been on Oxford's waterways since Friday, and plans to leave on Tuesday, as part of a narrow boat trip using solar power.

Mr Knox, 55 and originally from north Wales, has been travelling for 13 days so far and calculates that the trip has been 95 per cent powered by the sun - despite unseasonably wet weather.

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Having set off from Oundle, in Northamptonshire, he has used just 15 litres of fuel so far.

Explaining his motivations, he explained: "I am very passionate about nature and using renewable energy.

"My theory is that I hear a lot of people talking about being green for the sake of benefit of mankind but it (bothers) me that we put mankind at the top of the pecking order.

"We have got a real duty to look after nature, it makes me angry when I hear of wildlife disappearing."

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Traditionally, narrow boats have often relied on diesel engines, which is damaging to the environment and air pollution levels.

Mr Knox, who runs boating start-up business Mothership Marine, said his first narrowboat, called Shine, was using a solar powered, electric motor and that her journey was 'proof of concept'.

He added: "Its a real success story, I could have done it all on solar but the weather was atrocious."

Oxford Mail:

The narrowboat relies on a roof lined with more solar panels than many houses have.