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South Yorkshire and the Dukeries Branch

Newsletter Issue No.11 August 2012      


CHAIRMANS CHAT I would like to extend a warm welcome to any new members that have joined us since the last issue of Keels and Cuckoos and I hope that you will manage to make it to one of our meetings or events I do hope all our members are enjoying the summer despite the rain, hopefully we will have a warm and sunny August and September. The next social will be held on October 17th at Strawberry Island Boat Club, Milethorne Lane, Doncaster. This is an informal meeting with a chance for a chat and to join in with the quiz, set this month by the branch, with the chance of winning a cash prize. The December Meeting will be our Christmas Social, more about this in the next issue. We will once again be holding a canal clean up on October 28th please see advert on the next page. Please let one of the committee know if you are coming, and if you are a vegetarian to enable us to finalise our catering arrangements. Thank you to all members who have supplied Malcolm Fielding with an e-mail address so that K&C can be sent to you electronically. This is a big saving to us, for example if another 10 members supplied their addresses we could save ÂŁ5.00 on postage charges. Imagine the savings if another 100 members supplied their e-mail addresses. It also means that you get the magazine in colour instead of monochrome. All you need to do is contact Malcolm Fielding by e-mail on elliemalc@aol.com stating your e-mail and postal addresses. These will not be used for any other purposes. Cover Picture West Stockwith Lock, the entrance to the Chesterfield Canal from the River Trent at West Stockwith.

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JOIN US AT THE IWA CANAL CLEAN UP CANAL CLEAN UP EVENT Sheffield and Tinsley Canal Sunday October 28th, Start 10.00am Meet at Tinsley Marina Lock House Walk Sheffield S9 2FN EQUIPMENT PROVIDED PIES AND PEAS Available after the event in Tinsley Boat Club Clubhouse IWA joint event held in conjunction with Abbeydale Rotary Club, Adsetts Canal Project, C&RT and Tinsley Marina Residents CONTACT Mavis Paul Telephone 0114 268 3927 Email mavis.brian_paul@btinternet.com South Yorkshire and the Dukeries 3


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Did you know The Staffordshire and Worcestershire Canal was saved from closure in 1959 by a volunteer canal society. The designation of the whole of the Staffordshire and Worcestershire Canal as a Conservation area in 1969 has resulted in historical buildings and structures being retained and improved sympathetically. Canal builder John Smeaton also built the Eddystone Lighthouse and coined the term civil engineer. 4


NEW MEMBERS We give a warm welcome to our new members who have joined or transferred to the branch recently. Mr & Mrs M Farmer of Worksop Mr & Mrs C Turner of Sheffield Mr & Mrs K Cummings of Rotherham Mr M O’Balance of Doncaster Mr R Spur & Mrs I Wass of Dronfield Mr P Taylor of Chesterfield Mr & Mrs J Quick of Dronfield Miss J Watson of Rotherham Mr I Addison (Zead) of Doncaster

DON SMITH It is with regret that I have to report the death in May of Don Smith, who had given many years service to the IWA and this branch. Don and his late wife Pat were staunch supporters of branch activities. Don could always be seen at Pats side helping out with the sales stand and at the 1991 Campaign Festival at the Don Valley Bowl. He would always have a kind word for everyone. His funeral took place at the Church of St John the Evangelist on the 25th May. Our condolences and sympathy go out to his daughter, Heather. Did you know A major user of the Worcester and Birmingham Canal was the Cadbury’s chocolate factory at Bournville. The Wisbech Canal did not have its own water supply, but was refilled with water at each high tide. Canal engineer James Brindley built experimental locks in the grounds of his home. Turmhurst Hall. 5


NANTES - BREST CANAL On our recent holiday in Brittany in France we chanced upon the charming Nantes—Brest Canal at Châteauneufdu-Faou. Given its history since its creation in the 19th century the Nantes-Brest canal in Brittany France has for a long time contributed to the region’s economic development. Nowadays, it remains a natural cultural asset of the Centre Ouest Bretagne region, from the lake of Guerlédan to Brest harbour. Hikers and cyclists and some boaters fall in their hordes for the charms of its sleepy banks. For economic reasons brought about by the French Enlightenment, a link between Nantes and Brest via the inland waterways was envisaged as far back as the Ancien Regime. This monumental task did not rearly get off the ground in Port-Launay until 1806, in response to strategic needs. Trafffic problems due to the poor state of the roads and lanes made transport slow, arduous and costly. The need to get supplies to Brest and to a fleet in the grip of the English blockade during Napoleonic wars was therefore the deciding factor in the launch of the enterprise. It was essential to bring provisions, wood and fuel that would enable them to land on the other side of the Channel! The canal only really served Brest for “military” purposes until 1866. In fact, commercial traffic was of major importance for central Brittany, an underprivileged region in the 19th century. Commercial traffic was based on ores, coal, cast iron and products of the blast furnaces of central Brittany, and wood, slate and agricultral produce of the Aulne basin. From 10,000 tonnes in 1859, traffic increased  to 174,000 tonnes in 1911. 6


The First World War, the requisition of the barges, and the commissioning of the railway (Carhaix - Chteaulin - Camaret in 1911) put a final stop to trading on the canal. Struck off the list of navigable routes in 1957, the waterway

gradually declined with the progressive withdrawal of State funding. Handed over to the départment of Finistère in 1966, the canal is nowadays kept in good working order and serviced by SMATAH (the Aulne and Hyères combined association of tourism planning).

Canal cottages and the lock at Chteauneuf-du-Faou  7


THAMES DIAMOND JUBILEE PAGEANT We went to see the Queen...and got a bit wet… A story of the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Pageant As a family who own the Town Class Large Woolwich narrow boat Fulbourne, I filled in the form and we thought no more about it until January when an e-mail said we had a place. This was the first of many, many megabytes of electronic communications with details of the Pageant and its arrangements. Safety: With 1000 boats, it was to be the largest river pageant ever - and become a Guinness World Record. To achieve it, boat skippers would be unusually close to other boats, with a danger of colliding; the related danger of someone falling into the river would cause chaos. Every boater needed a lifejacket, every boat had to have a sufficient anchor, fire fighting equipment and be able to bale out if needed. Security: Everyone on the boats had to be registered two months in advance, and have their identity checked before being sent our “Boarding Passes”. It all led to a slow build up of….. Enthusiasm: There were lots of boating applications rejected by January 2012, and we on Fulbourne realised how keen other boats would be to have our space in the forty narrow boat convoy. For us the build up included an April weekend escape from our closed for drought winter moorings in Aylesbury, then a weekend rehearsal followed by the real event a week later. The three hour pageant needed two and a half additional days beforehand and a day and a half afterwards to put the boat in the correct starting position and thence to disperse afterwards  8


Our two leisure activities - narrow boating and Change Ringing (Change Ringing is the art of ringing a set of tuned bells in a series of mathematical patterns called “Changes”) (WIKIPEDIA) somehow merged together with the idea that a new set of tower bells destined for the church of St James, Garlickhythe, London, should be temporarily mounted on a barge leading the Pageant, and rung while moving by an expert band from the Ancient Society of College Youths. Was it worth it? The answer has to be YES. It was great to be part of such an historic event and I will never be able to wave to so many people again. The cold and the rain were badly timed, but overall it was a good boating experience. WONDERFUL Elaine Scott Nb Fulbourne NB Fulbourne on the Thames for the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Pageant.

STANILANDS REGATTA 1st & 2nd September 2012 The Branch Stand will be at Stanilands Marina, Lock Hill, Throne on Saturday 1st and Sunday 2nd September 2012. We shall be pleased to see any members who care to come to meet us. If you are there, please make yourself known. Colin Crofts

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THE WATERWAYS OF THE BRANCH CHESTERFIELD CANAL The remaining nine miles of the canal to Chesterfield are either in a derelict state or have been restored to navigation. From the eastern portal of Norwood Tunnel it is possible to walk its length passing under the M1 Motorway. This path will pass through the former Kiverton Colliery spoilt tip. With the new Kiverton waters reserve and fishing ponds, one of which maybe turned into a marina if the problems of navigation the tunnel can be overcome. At the western portal of the tunnel you come upon the remains of the thirteen locks that make up the Norwood Flight these include a unique group of the earliest known staircase locks. A building at the bottom of the locks was once the Boatman Inn. We now cross the A618 road with the canal now running adjacent to the Rother Valley Country Park and its many lakes. Here the canal passes through the village of Killamarsh where unfortunately much of the line of the has been built over although there is a public footpath that follows its original line. The Chesterfield Canal Partnership are looking at several options to overcome this problem. From Killamarsh we head for Renishaw where much canal restoration has taken place. In the 1890’s the route of the canal was straightened to allow the building of the railway. We are now approaching Staveley where a new Canal Basin has recently been opened. The canal from here to Chesterfield is in water and navigable to trail boats. Thanks to the sterling work of the Chesterfield Canal Trust, Chesterfield Canal Partnership and Waterways Recovery Group work parties. At Hollingwood the new Head Quarters of the Chesterfield Canal Trust can be found. The former lock house has been converted and extended into an education/conference centre, a CCT storage and office facility and the delightful Nona’s Café. 10


We are now entering the suburbs of Chesterfield. The canal in this area has been restored for a number of years and used for many Canal Festivals and Rallies. At Tapton can be found Tapton Lock which was the first to be restored and was reopened in 1990. Located adjacent is Tapton Lock House which is now a Derbyshire County Council visitor and information centre. The Canal literally ends in this area and joins the River Rother which runs into the town centre. There were two basins hereabouts the original one built in 1777 which was displaced by the new one in 1890 when the railway was built. This brings us to the end of the Chesterfield Canal but not the end of its restoration story. There are positive plans to extend the canal into the town centre. A new development has been proposed that will mean the canal would end in a new canal basin right in the town centre which along with Chesterfield’s famous crooked church spire will make another major attraction for one of the most attractive and scenic of Britain's Canals. End Malcolm Fielding DID YOU KNOW

Every yard of the forty six miles of the Chesterfield Canal can be walked on the Cuckoo Way. Since 1989 twelve miles of the canal have been restored as have thirty six locks and eleven bridges. There are only eight miles left to restore. For more information contact Chesterfield Canal Trust at www.chesterfield-canal-trust.org.uk or Canal & River Trust at www.canalrivertrust.org.uk

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QUEEN’S BIRTHDAY HONOURS It is with great pleasure to announce that John Baylis has been awarded the BEM (British Empire Medal) in this year Queen’s Birthday Honours list. John has led campaigning work for the IWA for over 30 years, and has been instrumental in all the major waterway development and restoration projects in the East Midlands since the early 1970s. He was the driving force behind the revival and re-opening of the Erewash Canal and led the restoration of four locks on the Montgomery Canal– negotiating, leading work parties, devising engineering solutions, inspiring volunteer support and making sure the funds were there. He led IWA’s Navigation Committee for over 10 years, was a deputy chairman of IWA, chairman of IWA’s East Midlands region and a director of Waterways Recovery Group for 30 years (many of those years as its deputy chairman). He was awarded the Association’s most prestigious award, The Cyril Styring Trophy, at the 2011 AGM. Some other IWA people who were also recognised this year included Fred Blampied MBE Roger Squires BEM Other waterways honours included Beryl Windsor BEM organiser Angel Canal Festival North London Di Skilbeck MBE President Boat Museum Society Ellesmere Port Norma Hornby MBE Chairman Canal Boat Adventure Project in Warrington Shirley Beckwith OBE Chairman & Co-owner City Cruises plc, London Docklands Sir Tony Baldry Co chairman Parliamentary Waterways Group, former waterways minister and IWA member. 12


IWA TO THE RESCUE The IWA has committed £30,000 to keep the Chesterfield Canal Partnership afloat. The partnership, formed in 2002, with a Development Manager jointly funded to move the project forward, has led to major leaps forward with the restoration of the Chesterfield Canal. Various moves with funding has meant that Derbyshire County Council funding has had to be re-designated. The Partnership’s partners agreed to use surplus funds to finance the Development Officer post but this still left a deficit. Nationally IWA has agreed to continue supporting the Development Manager’s post with funding from a legacy, to used in emergency, left to the IWA by the late Chesterfield Canal Society and later Trust, chairman, Keith Ayling. The view was taken by IWA that the present crisis situation was an emergency. Therefore £30,000 has been allocated to fund the Partnerships Development Manager for the next two years. Dr Geraint Coles, the Development Manager, will now be hosted by Chesterfield Borough Council with a view to establishing a regeneration company with charitable objectives that itself can become self funding within two years. Derbyshire County Council are to appoint a county wide canals officer who will offer support to the canals within Derbyshire that are being actively restored namely the Chesterfield Canal, Cromford Canal and the Derby Canal. Malcolm Fielding

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FROM THE ARCHIVES From some of the material recovered from Sheffield Basin some years ago there follows the 1930’s the outline of a scheme by The West Riding County Council and the Sheffield and South Yorkshire Navigation Company for the closure of the Dearne and Dove Canal and its substitution by an arterial road. The document is reproduced as printed. The Sheffield and South Yorkshire Navigation Company (S&SYNC) was incorporated in 1894 to take over the four navigations known as the River Dun Navigation (RDN), Stainforth and Keadby Canal (S&KC), Sheffield and Tinsley Canal (S&TC) and the Dearne and Dove Canal (D&DC). The first three of these waterways form a main transport route between Sheffield, Rotherham, Doncaster and the Humber ports. The size of locks and depth of waterway which enables keels of 110 ton capacity to navigate, together with modern warehouse and wharfage equipment, make this one of the most efficient canal systems in the country, and the traffic amounts to half a million tons per annum. Not only does this system serve the industrial towns of South Yorkshire, but by the construction of the New Junction Canal in 1903 (in conjunction with the Aire and Calder Navigation) provision was made for the shipment of large quantities of export coal from the collieries in the Doncaster district. The fact that throughout the whole of these lengths of main canal there is protection against subsidence from the working of coal has enabled the undertaking to be maintained as an efficient waterway, and has enabled improvements to be effected and the enlarging of locks, etc; undertaken at reasonable cost. The navigation is continually being improved and developed with a prospect of increasing use for transport. The D&DC, on the other hand, has not these advantages. This canal which was constructed under and Act of

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Parliament of 1793, was one of the earlier canals, and no provision was made for support against subsidence. The effect of mine working would not have been foreseen at that time and all minerals were reserved to the land owners without protection for this company. The effect has been that as various seams of coal have been worked under sections of the canal, whilst pillars have been left in other places, the maintenance costs have been excessive, and the point has been reached where banks can no longer be raised in safety to provide an efficient depth of water for navigation. At the same time, this canal was constructed for the use of smaller boats, which were the common form of canal transport in those days, and the canal cannot be adapted for modern conditions owing to the number of locks which would have to be entirely rebuilt, apart from the fact that the effects of subsidence make any scheme of reconstruction impracticable. The result is that as compared with 110 ton carrying capacity of barges using the main navigation, the traffic on the D&DC is restricted to units of from 50 to 70 tons capacity. The number of these is consequently diminishing, as all new barges being constructed are to the larger standard of the main canal. To be concluded in issue 12. The date of this document is unknown but from other correspondence in the file it appears to be circa 1934. PREAMBLE FORM THE FRONT PAGE The following is the outline of a scheme put forward for your consideration by the West Riding County Council and the Sheffield and South Yorkshire Navigation Company, the object of which is the closing of parts of the Dearne and Dove Canal and the substitution there for of a system of main arterial roads. Did you know ; the estimated cost for a full restoration of the Dearne and Dove Canal and the Barnsley Canal to take narrow boats was ÂŁ127 million in 2006.

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2012 BRANCH OFFICERS Chairman Mavis Paul 0114 2683927 mavis.brian_paul@btinternet.com Vice Chair Colin Crofts 01302 841619 cjcrofts@aol.com Secretary Malcolm Fielding 01302 873127 elliemalc@aol.com Treasurer Pat Davies 01709 526725 patdav@fsmail.net Minutes Dennis Cozens 01302 845336 dennis.cozens@waitrose.com Publicity Dave Scott 0790 0272434 acp2004naburn@hotmail.com Planning Colin Crofts 01302 841619 cjcrofts@aol.com Membership John Shaw 0114 2582535 Member Mary Crofts 01302 841619 cjcrofts@aol.com Social Vacant Sales Vacant If you would like to join the Branch Committee please contact any of the above people. WORD SEARCH ANSWERS Hayton Clarborough Shireoaks Ranby

Misterton Retford Killamarsh Renishaw

Clayworth Wiseton Osberton Worksop Staveley Chesterfield Hollingwood

Copy date for the November issue is Wed; October 11th. 16

Keels & Cuckoos August 2012  
Keels & Cuckoos August 2012  

IWA South Yorkshire & Dukeries Branch Magazine, Keels & Cuckoos August 2012