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Matt the barber cuts costs on the canal

17 August, 2018 — By The Xtra Diary

Matt Lankester can chop your mop near London Zoo


A floating barber shop cut a dash on the Regent’s Canal this week.

The hair salon, moored up this week near London Zoo but moving up and down the canal, is the project of award- winning stylist Matt Lankester, pictured above, who describes himself as an “off-grid barber and stylist”.

Mr Lankester told Diary sky-high rents made it almost impossible to run an independent business on the high street where rents can exceed £20,000, plus £10,000 rates.

He told Diary: “It was just more cost-effective for me to trade from the boat, because you’ve got no shop rent, no council tax and no electricity bill.”

New businesses have been popping up on the Regent’s Canal in recent weeks with a new coffee-to-go at the Regent’s Park entrance and another nearby doubling up as traditional tea rooms.

The Canal and River Trust said: “We want to encourage and support boating businesses to thrive and offer high quality services which add life and vitality to our canals and riverside destinations.”

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