Elsie Barker is desperate for a new start after her husband leaves her. When her friend Izzy - who needs to escape her abusive boyfriend - tells her about the jobs going for women as narrowboat crew on the canals between London and Coventry, she jumps at the chance. Their new boss, Dorothy, is kind and fair, but it's clear she has a secret of her own. The crew is completed by Tolly, searching for a new vocation. The work is hard, but the girls forge close friendships that will see them through the darkest times. They could never have predicted how much the canals could change their lives...