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INLAND WATERWAYS ASSOCIATION SOUTH YORKSHIRE AND THE DUKERIES BRANCH

ISSUE 20 NOVEMBER 2014

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CONTENTS Branch Chairman’s Chat…………………...4 Announcements……………………………..5 New members……………………………….6 Word Search………………………………...7 From The Archives………………………….8 Eckington School Boat……………………..10 Branch Social Evening……..……...……….12 Chesterfield Canal Santa Specials………..13 Humber Keel “Daybreak”………..… …….14 Keels and Cuckoos is published on behalf of the SOUTH YORKSHIRE AND THE DUKERIES BRANCH of the INLAND WATERWAYS ASSOCIATION By M H Fielding 1 Vicarage Way, Arksey, Doncaster, DN5 0TG Printed by Colour Image, Loudwater Views expressed in this publication are not necessarily those of the IWA or of The South Yorkshire and the Dukeries branch committee, but are published out of interest to members and other readers. The Inland Waterways Association Island House, Moor Road, Chesham HP5 1WA A non-profit distribution company limited by guarantee (No612245) Registered as a Charity (No 212342) 2


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The Branch Committee would like to wish everyone

A MERRY CHRISTMAS and a VERY HAPPY

2015

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BRANCH CHAIRMANS CHAT I write these thoughts before the October Social at the Red Lion, Todwick but you will read them after the event. I can’t make any comment except to express the hope that those of you who came enjoyed the evening and those of you who did not are now regretting it. I ought to be wishing you all a Merry Christmas and a happy New Year but that feels inappropriate as I am writing this in the first week of October. At the last committee meeting we discussed the branch AGM (All Gone Missing?) all too often the AGM is the meeting to avoid. By attending you may end up with a job on the committee. Within our branch there maybe another Robert Aikman, another David Hutchins or another Tom Rolt. These giants of the IWA were once not involved with the association at all but now their names will live forever in waterway circles. Happily for us all and the British inland waterways these three and many hundreds since, have accepted the challenge and have done their bit for the waterways. Committee work need not be all tiresome meetings in smoke filled rooms. Often the best work is done quietly at home, sometimes on-line, possibly on the towpath, maybe just talking to people . Low pressure communication can be a very effective way to get our message across. Waterway supporters cannot be stereotyped so you could be just the person that would fit comfortably into the current committee. If you want to find out how little a contribution would be enough and what skills the branch needs do please call me on 01777 704224 or e-mail me at dawsondavida@yahoo.com for a chat. In 1963, aged 18, I made one such call, I was co-opted onto the North-East Midlands Branch committee, made very welcome by people old enough (almost) to be my grandparents, and asked to become the youth officer for the branch. This resulted in trips through Standedge Tunnel, into Butterley Tunnel and through Dudley Tunnel. Being on the committee gave status to this Sheffield raised school boy! I have been involved ever since, met some great people and been to interesting places. If you want to see the system grow, to see the EA waterways handed to C&RT, see the Rother Link built, the Chesterfield restored, to see the tow-paths improved, boat owning costs contained, but above all if you have any feelings for our wonderful waterways, just think for a moment, not what IWA does for you, 4


5 but what you could do for IWA. Where waterway restoration is concerned, a million teaspoons will shift more mud than one man with a shovel. So please bring your teaspoons to the AGM (date and venue to be confirmed in the next K&C) the man with the shovel is tiring and needs you. David Dawson...South Yorkshire and the Dukeries Branch Chairman.

AN APOLOGY I need to apologise to our readers for mistakes that occurred in the last issue. This was due to many last minute changes having to be made due to various changes outside our control and my eagerness to try sticking to publication dates. This edition is late because we have decided to alter publication dates to try to take into account fixed event dates, this means I can publish events nearer to their occurrence dates. I am afraid that this edition has to be published in a temporary format because hackers have got into my computer and it has had to have a new motherboard fitted consequently I lost all of the original copy which was within three words of completion and being sent to the printer.

BRANCH AREA WINTER STOPPAGES The Canal and River Trust have announced a winter stoppage on the Sheffield & Tinsley Canal. From Monday February 12th until Friday 27th February 2015. The stoppage is to allow safety work and lock gate replacement, on locks5 and 6 with complete dewatering from lock 4 to 7. There is to be an open day on February 8th from 09.30 am until 03.30pm when the general public can enter the lock and inspect the works. On the Chesterfield Canal, West Stockwith Lock will be open on the 1st and 2nd of November and will then be closed for the rest of the month and is due to reopen on the 2nd December 2014.

BRANCH AGM We have decided to move the Branch Annual General Meeting to a new date this being the social evening of May 20th 2015. We need to look at a venue but this will not be possible until after the next committee meeting in November where a decision will be made. The agenda and location will be published in the next issue of this magazine. DID YOU KNOW The Selby Canal was built in1774 by the Aire and Calder Navigation Company to head off another proposal for a twenty three mile canal linking Leeds directly to

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NEW MEMBERS We would like to welcome the following new members to the branch. You are most welcome Mr P Drake of Sheffield Mrs S Robinson and Family Mrs M Peat of Sheffield Mr L Broughton & Miss R Jennings of Sheffield Mr & Mrs Hewitt of Sheffield Mr B Howson of Rotherham Dr & Mrs D Scott of Rotherham Mr J Thomas of Barnsley

AUTUMN CLEAN UP SUNDAY 26TH October saw our biannual clean up take place. Again this was based on the Sheffield and Tinsley Canal working towards Rotherham. IWA, Abbeydale Rotary Club, Tinsley Boat Club and Adsetts Canal Project took part all supervised by Dave Walker of the Canal and River Trust. This time we had thirty six participants in all and about sixty six bags of rubbish was collected. As there is to be a major stoppage on the canal in January/February 2015 we targeted the area where much of the work is to take place, this was to give a clear-ish path for the work team to determine where to locate a roadway that will have to be constructed to enable machinery access to the site. The canal is to be completely dewatered between locks three to seven during the works. As usual pie and peas was served to participants after the event. We will be back in March 2015 when hopefully we may not have as much rubbish to clear away. Malcolm Fielding 6


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WORD SEARCH In the grid below are the names of fifteen Canal Arms or Branches. All are single words. They can be written forwards, backwards, vertically, horizontally or diagonally. The answers can be found at the foot of the page.

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ANSWERS Northampton Aylesbury

Stourbridge Ellesmere

Boshboil

Glasson

Walsall

Paddington Wendover

Welford

Prees

Springs

Fens Slough

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FROM THE ARCHIVE The following article is taken from material found in the old offices of the Sheffield and South Yorkshire Navigation in Sheffield basin, after nationalisation it became the DAIWE (Docks and Inland Waterways Executive) North Eastern offices in Sheffield. Log of the “Cressy� Hurleston to Ellesmere and Return,1947 July 8th Weather overcast but fine and still. Left moorings at 6 a.m. Little weed, but travelled very slowly on account of lack of water, dragging the bottom and stirring up mud all the way (1m 2f) to junction with the Whitchurch Arm, now quite overgrown. Accommodation drawbridge here lacking pull-up chain, but hooked up quite easily with boathook. For the next half mile the going improved until we reached the next accommodation drawbridge where we struck another patch of dense weed. We struggled through this assisting engine by shafting and with many stops to clear propeller until we reached a second drawbridge where we stopped for breakfast while a heavy shower blew over. We then continued, travelling still extremely bad, until we approached the fixed bridge by Blackoe cottages. Here we ran aground on a bad scour of silt from an incoming stream which stretched right across the channel. We stopped engine and rigged pulley block on fore end. We secured fixed end of line to a mooring spike driven in on the outside beside bridge-hole, and then hauled on towing path assisted by an old Irishman who came out of the neighbouring cottage. By this means she came over the scour quite readily. Re-started engine in bridge-hole and continued. Canal weedy and very little water under but we were now able to continue under power without manual assistance but with occasional stops to clear propeller when reversals failed to throw off the weed. Stopped for lunch in bridgehole close to railway (G.W.R. ex Cambrian section Ellesmere-Whitchurch line). Continued after lunch in the same slow but steady fashion, passed under and lost sight of railway and eventually reached minor road drawbridge at Brickwalls. A squally wind looked as if it might be troublesome here so my wife remained ashore with a bow line. Though the wind did not catch us after all, occasional bow-hauling assistance helped over scours caused by land drains running down the slopes of the cutting approaching Platt Lane. Stopped for tea at Platt Lane which is a hamlet with wharf and small general shop. Met and photographed gypsies encamped in green road just beside canal. Bright sunshine, wind moderating and dead ahead so decided to continue. 8


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•Travelling better and less weedy on straight length to Marl Allotment bridge. At this point we passed on to the peat bogs of Whixall and Fen’s Mosses. Across the bog the canal is wide, deep and completely weed-free. In spite of the level being 9” low we could not wish foe better travelling. We skimmed across the bog at a fine pace, most exhilarating after our previous struggles, soon passing Moss Farm drawbridge, and the unction with the old Prees Branch (deep and open as far as we could see) at Whixall Moss Roving Bridge. This is very lonely country and very fascinating. The great expanse of peat stretching away towards the distant blue mountains of Wales reminded us of our crossing of the Bog of Allen by the Grand Canal of Ireland. Where the canal left the Moss it narrowed again and the draft more restricted. It was still weed-free however, and we travelled on steadily to Bettisfield (Flintshire) where we moored for the night just beyond the wharf at 7.15 p.m. After dinner we waked round the queer little village and had a drink at “The Nags Head ”Miles 8m 4f from Hurleston 20m 7f July 9th Weather fine and bright but breezy. Left Bettisfield at 9.30a.m. Not much water under, but we just cleared bottom. No weeds so travelled slowly but steadily. Crossed a fine embankment approaching Hampton Bank. Beyond this place we crossed Balmer Heath, a short tract of boggy heath where water was again deeper. This is a wild and beautiful country of remote small farms. Shortly after clearing Balmer Heath we struck a short length of weed but managed to drive through it without manual assistance until we turned into weeds besides Colemere where, owing to the trees overhead, all weed growth ceased. This length of canal besides Colemere is one of the most beautiful I have ever seen, and we stopped to explore the lake and to have a protracted lunch in a sunny sheltered place by the lake side. Eventually we continued past Blake Mere to the short Ellesmere Tunnel (towing path through), our surroundings still most beautiful. Just past the tunnel the canal emerged from the trees and weed became so bad that bow hauling and shafting had to be resorted to for the last half-mile to Ellesmere, Junction with the short Ellesmere Arm. Here we moored up beside Beech House, once the headquarters of the old Ellesmere Canal Company . found Heron moored up outside the canal workshops just round the turn, her owner having left here (her ed.) t here. We found that the weed beyond this point was so dense that without a horse it would be impossible for us, with so large and heavy a boat, to travel any further. Miles 4m 6f From Hurleston 25m 5f 9


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ECKINGTON SCHOOL BOAT NAMING CEREMONY Mr Patrick Cummings, the Headmaster, officially named the Eckington School boat on Sunday 28th September. It is called Madeline. This is in memory

of Madeline Siddall, a student at the school who died suddenly from an undiagnosed heart condition at the age of 15. The simple ceremony, held at Hollingwood Hub, was attended by members of Madeline's family, staff and students from the school and members of the Chesterfield Canal Trust. Fours years ago the school made the decision to buy the shell of ma 40’ steel narrow boat and took delivery in October 2011. Over the course of the following 2.5 years a dedicated team of students and staff from the school has fitted out the boat completely. The work has included everything from the engine to the seats, the kitchen area to the toilet. The verdict of all those who have seen the finished article is that the standard is fantastically high. During the early months of 2014, several members of staff and some students were trained to be skippers by Chesterfield Canal Trust members. Madeline was finally put into the water at Staveley Town basin on the Chesterfield Canal on 26th June in time for the Chesterfield canal Festival, where it was inspected and admired by members of the public. Since then the school has made much use of Madeline , firstly on an Activities Week and subsequently for familiarisation cruises. A full course of Science work bases around the boat is currently being written. Madeline will soon be used by Eckington feeder schools. Madeline is used by CCT to run trips from Hollingwood Hub on Saturdays. Originally only scheduled to run in the summer holidays, they have proved very popular, so the season has been extended until the end of October. They will restart in April. All takings are split equally between the school and the Trust. Rod Augton CCT

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Madeline naming ceremony

Mr Cummings thanks everyone who has worked so hard on the boat

Mr Cummings cut the ribbon declaring the boat ready for use

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BRANCH SOCIAL EVENING On Wednesday 15th October the branch, at the instigation of Chairman, David Dawson, started a new season of social events. Held at the Red Lion Inn, Todwick, David hosted an evening of very old cine film and photos highlighting the David Hutchins led restoration of the Southern Stratford Canal and the Retford and Worksop Boat Club’s acquisition of the Narrow Boat “Nelson” to act as a club House for the burgeoning boat club. Present at the evening was a very old friend of the branch John Nuttall (ex BW, S&SYN & Chesterfield Canal Manager), Richard Atherton, Martin Dawson, Richard Allsopp and of course David Dawson who had all worked on the Southern Stratford, Richard Atherton and David Dawson were in the crew that brought the butty Nelson onto the Chesterfield Canal. The event got off to a hectic start as it was found when setting up the computer would not talk to the projector therefore David had to rush back home to try and procure the correct leads. In the meantime Robin Stonebridge, Chairman of the Chesterfield Canal Trust, gave the meeting a rundown on the latest developments Chesterfield canal restoration and HS2 developments. His main revelation was that the planning team at HS2 had not even known there is a canal under restoration in the Staveley area of Derbyshire, they had not even looked at Google Earth which, as most people know, shows, everything in a given area. Finally when David arrived back he and Robin Stonebridge did Sterling job getting the computer to work. We were treated to some old photographs about the Southern Stratford and a few humorous memories. The thing that stuck out more than anything was the total lack of safety equipment and the risks people took to complete this restoration. No hard hats, high visibility jackets, guard rails and most of all nobody stood with a mobile phone clamped to their ear. The film showed how things have drastically changed especially with a competition where people were jumping from a ,boat onto a row boat and then scrambling back onto the boat upon its return

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Health & Safety What Health & safety

Cliff Clarke

Nelson on the Chesterfield Canal

SANTA TRIPS ON THE CHESTERFIELD CANAL Santa Special cruisers will be running again on the Chesterfield Canal from five locations. There will be a present for every child with a mince pie and drink for the adults. The cost will be £^.00 per person. The boats will run from:CHESTERFIELD Tapton Lock Saturday & Sunday Nov to 22nd Dec. RETFORD Hope Pole Pub Saturday & Sunday Nov to 21 Dec. WORKSOP Saturday & Sunday Dec 6th & 7th from Laura’s Coffee Shop HOLLINGWOOD HUB 23rd and 24th Dec

Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday

All trips are run by The Chesterfield Canal Trust

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22nd,


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HUMBER KEEL “DAYBREAK” Earlier last month I received an email from Tony and Sally Woodward regarding their Humber Keel “Daybreak”. The vessel was built at Richard Dunstan’s in Thorne 80 years ago for the Doncaster flour millers Thomas Handley and Sons, whose mill was located adjacent to the old BW offices in Greyfriars Road, Doncaster. She was the last vessel to be built in the UK to carry cargo purely under sail. She worked between Hull and Doncaster all her working life. She was bought by Doncaster born skipper Tony Woodward and his wife Sally in 1979and has since been gradually converted to a houseboat and has gained an engine with the former grain store converted to bedrooms. She cruises mostly on the River Thames and is based at Staines-upon –Thames in Surrey. She is undertaking a voyage from her home mooring picking up a token load of grain in Hull and taking it to The mill site at Doncaster. During the cruise from the Thames to the Humber Tony and Sally have called in at various festivals and events en-route reminding people of the vessels working heritage. In this day and age it is unrealistic to expect a vessel like this to be solely propelled by sail thus the engine. From 1937 she and her sister ship “Danum” would be towed onto the River Humber by Handley’s Pride, their first motor vessel and they would them make their way to Doncaster under sail. In 1939 she along with many other Humber Keels was fitted with a Lister JP2 diesel engine and the sailing gear was removed. This engine was fitted into the hold space thus preserving the traditional cabin . Handley’s Mill was subsequently taken over by Ranks and was closed in 1969followed by the Mexborough mill a few months later, the remaining mill at Rotherham ceased receiving grain by water in 1977. Bought by Tony and Sally in 1979, work was started to restore her to her original condition, started by obtaining a new mast. This pole, found in a farmers field and donated by him, before it became firewood. The pole was the right length but had to be re-machined to make it the right diameter. Over the years other original sailing gear was collected as it became available but winches had to be fabricated. “Daybreak has call ed at Keadby, Thorne and Doncaster , we wish her a safe homeward cruise. 14


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Daybreak leaving Barnby Dun

Daybreak approaching and entering Long Sandall Lock

Daybreak adjacent to

Owners

Hanley’s Mill site

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BRANCH OFFICERES CHAIRMAN David Dawson, 21 Smeath Lane, Clarborough, Retford, DN22 9JU Tel 01777 803918 email dawsondavida@yahoo.com Mobile 07501 803918 VICE CHAIRMAN & PLANNING OFFICER Colin Crofts, Staddlestones, South Bramwith, Doncaster DN7 5SY Tel 01302 841619 email cjcrofts@btinternet.com TREASURER Pat Davies 55 Rockcliffe Road Rawmarsh, Rotherham S62 6LX Tel 01709 526725 email patdav54@gmail.com SECREATRY & KEELS & CUCKOOS EDITOR Malcolm Fielding, 1 Vicarage Way, Arksey, Doncaster, DN5 0TG Tel 01302 873127 email roc3brn9roas1ark4@aim.com MEMBERSHIP OFFICER John Shaw, 72 Norton Lees Crescent, Sheffield, S8 8SR Tel 0114 258 2535 PUBLICITY OFFICER Dave Scott, 17 Bowshaw Road, Batemoor, Sheffield, S8 8EY Tel 0114 237 5327

email acp2004naburn@hotmail.com

COMMITTEE MEMBERS Mavis Paul, 116 Sandygate Road, Sheffield, S10 5RZ Tel 0114 268927 email mavis.brian_paul@btinternet.com Mobile 07725 464611 Helen Dawson as David Dawson Mary crofts

as Colin Crofts

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Keels & Cuckoos, Issue 20 November 2014  
Keels & Cuckoos, Issue 20 November 2014  

IWA Yorkshire & South Dukeries newsletter Keels & Cuckoos. Issue 20 - November 2014.