Page 1


1 to attempt (eg the fulfilment of an obligation) by exertion of effort; 2 archaic to strive to achieve or reach ~ vi to make an effort to do something n a serious determined effort

Northampton Branch Newsletter - May 2013 FIRST WORK PARTY DATE FIXED AS OUR ADOPTION PLAN MOVES FORWARD An application form has now been signed confirming the adoption of the Northampton Arm by the Branch and a reply received from the Canal & River Trust setting out certain operational criteria, mainly focusing on health and safety issues — in other words, what we can and cannot do. It is hoped our response satisfies the CRT and we await formal notification that we have “Adopted the Arm”. It had been originally planned that the official announcement of our adoption would be made at the Boat Gathering, but with this being cancelled a new date is being arranged. Meanwhile, a Branch member has come forward to chair the dedicated Arm adoption sub-committee. He is David Higgins and he writes about his new role on page 16. Subject to CRT, approval an initial work party date has been set for Tuesday 2nd July, 10am by Lock 17 at Far Cotton, Northampton.

Boat Gathering is cancelled Sadly, the annual Branch Boat Gathering in early May had to be cancelled due to lack of support. The number of boats booked in by 9th April numbered only 13, so the organising committee extended the lower entry fee until 21st April. However, by then only four more boaters had intimated their intention to attend but at that stage had not paid the entry fee. Thus it was with great reluctance the decision was made to cancel as not only the start – up costs were not being covered but clearly the event as a whole could not be allowed to run at a loss. The organisers are now currently considering the way forward. If anyone has any ideas, please contact Branch Chairman Bernard Morton, who writes in more detail in his Jottings on page 7. The IWA was founded in 1946 to campaign for the retention, restoration and development of Britain’s navigable waterways and for their fullest commercial and recreational use. The IWA is a registered Charity (no. 212342) , whose work is supported by members’ subscriptions.


AA unique opportunity to experience the delicate flavours of Indian cuisine at its best!





EDITORIAL MUSINGS I have a feeling that the unfortunate cancellation of the Branch’s annual Boat Gathering is not an isolated event coming to grief through an apparent lack of support. Anecdotal evidence suggests a saddening trend in this direction generally, particularly when the events are voluntarily organised. For example, I believe the Northampton Beer Festival would have been in dire straits had not the local council come to its initial aid. Certainly bazaars, fetes, jumble sales and the like are often presently finding it hard going. There is no doubt about it: people’s personal budgets are being squeezed and when they do turn up to support events, they don’t spend so much money when they are there. But as an ageing personal friend, who has a habit of reminding his listeners that “during the war”, observes, eventually we surfaced from the economic strictures of wartime, so no doubt we shall emerge from the present state of affairs. All it needs is a little patience. We can only hope. Meantime, let’s get out and about on the waterways this summer and think positively. One direction in which we can and should be really positive is the challenge of helping to look after “our” canal, ie the Northampton Arm. It’s always a delight to navigate the Arm, despite the attendance of traffic noise and Northampton’s urban tentacles spreading ever wider. In the thick of the locks, you feel you are in “real” canal country. The world of commerce may be whirling around you but reflect for a moment – it was, after all, the canals which originally played a key role in creating this commercial environment, so really it’s only right that the two traffic arteries, canal and road, should sit side by side. Just don’t forget the earplugs! Enjoy yourselves in and around your waterways world this summer. And please don’t forget what I was reflecting upon in my last Musings: “use ‘em or lose ‘em”. In other words, patronise your local waterway amenities as often as possible, especially pubs and shops, otherwise next time you pass that way they probably won’t be there.

IWA Northampton Branch web site Please visit it regularly to see any updates


DIARY DATES June 15th-16th Gala Weekend at Stoke Bruerne (see page 17 for more details). 23rd-24th Blisworth Canal Partnership Jim Payler Photo Exhibition, Blisworth Village Hall (see page 26 for more details). 23rd 3.30 Mikron Theatre Company production of “Beyond The Veil” at the Old Rectory, High Street, Blisworth. Bring your own chair. 25th 7.30 Mikron Theatre Company production of “Don’t Shoot the Messenger” on the Museum Green at The Canal Museum, Stoke Bruerne. Bring your own chair. 29th–30th Braunston Historic Narrowboat Festival (see page 9 for more details). July 2nd 10am Northampton Arm first work party (see pages 1 & 16 for more details). 7th 11am IWA Northampton Walk of the Northampton Arm from Lock 2 (see page 10 for more details). 13th–14th Buckingham Canal Society annual Canal Festival and Lock Ransom at Cosgrove Lock (for more details see pages 22/23 19th–21st IWA National Festival at Cassiobury Park, Watford. August 24th–25th Pirate Weekend at the Canal Museum, Stoke Bruerne (for more information contact Canal Museum on 01604 862229). September 14th–15th Stoke Bruerne Village at War Weekend, including Spitfire display on Saturday only. (for more details,

Buckingham Canal Society Work Party Dates June 9th, 13th, 27th, July 11th, 14th, 25th, August 8th, 11th, 22nd, September 5th, 8th, 19th,

For further details contact Athina Beckett on 01908 661217



Stowe Hill Wharf, Heyford Lane, Weedon, Northants NN7 4SF Tel: 01327 341365 Graham Shepherd and Robert Gudgeon welcome you to Stowe Hill Workshop 

Full Repaints


Hull Blacking/Stern Gear


Inspection and Repairs


Engine Repairs and Maintenance


Complete Fit-Out and Woodwork Alterations


Plumbing Installations and Repairs


Electrical Installations and Repairs


Stockists of Morris Oils and Grease


Full range of Batteries always available (please let us know your requirements)

By road we are easily found, a few yards off the A5 at Stowe Hill towards Nether Heyford. By boat close to Bridge 26



Branch Chairman’s Jottings by Bernard Morton Disappointed and frustrating are the immediate words that spring to mind following the cancellation of this year’s Branch Gathering over the early Spring Bank Holiday weekend. Also, of course, apologies. We did our utmost over a limited time scale to make as many people as possible aware of the situation but as we do not have the email details of all Branch members, some inevitably remained unaware. Obviously, all the entrants (13 who had paid in advance, four promises to attend) were notified and warning notices were displayed at Gayton Junction, Gayton Marina and at the top lock on the Arm, as a result of which I have had no reports of anyone turning up for the non-existent event. So why such a low response for an event which, in previous years, has always been a popular and sociable weekend and which also acts as the Branch’s principal fundraiser? There could be several explanations. First, was it because last year’s Gathering was twice cancelled because of adverse weather conditions, principally flooding but also because of perceived difficulties of getting to Becket’s Park from the canal system via the Arm, closed at various times during the summer (a combination of water restrictions and maintenance work) but always available to us for getting to and from the re-scheduled Gathering in August thanks to the enthusiastic support of the Canal & River Trust. So did people just get out of the habit of attending? Not really, I would have thought, this was only a one-year glitch. Secondly, were those attending from the River Nene put off because they have become “punch drunk” by the regular high water levels and consequent closures over the past twelve months and feared they would get marooned at Northampton? Possibly, because at the end of May, many were planning to attend the river clubs’ major annual rally which this year is being held at Titchmarsh Mill. Thirdly, was it down to inertia, pure and simple – just couldn’t be bothered? So there you are. I throw it over to you. Clearly your Branch committee wants to keep the Gathering going, but shall we give it a rest for next year? Or do we move it to a canal location? Do we require a totally different approach to the event? In which case we need new (and younger) blood on the organising committee whose present members freely admit they are running out of ideas. I remain poised, as always, to hear your views. It is YOUR Gathering – but YOUR INPUT is essential. In purely practical terms, in order to organise a viable event we need a minimum of 25 entries (with their entry fees). There is always money to be paid up front, although we do keep this to an absolute minimum. Thirteen boaters, five of whom were organising committee members, actually entered and paid the entry fee, four more said they were coming but hadn’t paid anything in advance. I am sure they would have done so but it was a risk your committee wasn’t prepared to take – and this still left a shortfall of eight. Really, it was a no-brainer. Entry fees have been refunded and so consequently it has been necessary to subsidise the event from genContinued on page 8

8 eral Branch funds which means less money is available for other waterways causes and purposes, such as funding our voluntary work in supporting our aims as a result of adopting the Northampton Arm. This adoption project is now moving forward. During the Gathering it had been hoped a formal announcement would be made by CRT to confirm our official adoption status but this has now been postponed, although only temporarily. Happily, a volunteer, David Higgins, has now come forward to lead our Northampton Arm Adoption sub-committee, currently in the process of being set up. David, a keen boater and regular user of the Arm, is retired and looking for an activity to keep him busy. I think he may have found a suitable role! As I mentioned above, and in my last Jottings, some of the money we would have raised at the Gathering was to be earmarked towards the cost of equipment required when we start our activities on the Arm, such as protective clothing (gloves etc.), coloured identification bibs, rakes, grappling hooks and so on. These costs will now be drawn from Branch funds unless your committee decides to mount a fund-raising exercise specifically for this purpose. Any ideas on this? My thanks go to a loyal Branch member who lives south of the Thames but keeps her boat on our patch. Concerned at the cancellation of the Gathering, she volunteered to monitor similar events this year to see how they fared. If they were successful, why? If they suffered from dwindling attendances, also why? Clearly this information will not be available until later in the year, but it is the type of intelligence we need to help us with our forward planning. But there is a bright light at the end of this rather sombre revue of recent events. There definitely will be a Gathering at Becket’s Park in 2015. For, on 1st May 1815, the Northampton Arm was opened, replacing the temporary tramway link which had been built using equipment from the no longer needed Blisworth Hill tramway following the opening of the Blisworth Tunnel in 1805. We are planning to engage with Northampton Borough Council and other organisations in an anniversary event to make it another red-letter day in the history of Northampton’s waterside life. We are also going to approach IWA nationally to make this a Festival event. Now you will want to come along to this, won’t you …? PLAQUES FOR SALE. Among the items which have to be paid for in advance of the Gathering are the memento brass plaques. As a result of the cancellation, we now have 40 of these for sale. Their attractive design, drawn up as always by Eric Young, features a lock and commemorates the adoption of the Northampton Arm. They are therefore, I would suggest, a little piece of waterway history which many of you would like to have as a keepsake. Each plaque we sell will, of course, help to defray the initial financial outgoings we had to bear because of the cancellation of the Gathering. Plaques from previous Gatherings are also available. Please see the advertisement on page 20 as to how you can obtain these plaques. PHOTOGRAPHIC COMPETITION. This competition, themed “Waterways Throughout The Year”, with the aim of producing a Branch calendar for 2014, is still alive even though the original plan was to hold it in conjunction with the 2013 Gathering. If you have any waterway images you would like to be considered for the calendar, please post them to Roger Hasdell at 8 High Street, Hardingstone, NorthampContinued on page 10


10 ton NN4 7BT by the end of August for consideration by the Branch committee meeting in September. CARRY ON CRUISING (OR WHATEVER). May I wish you a good summer on and around the waterways doing whatever floats your boat. Hope we shall see a good turnout of you on Sunday 7th July when we are gathering for an informal towpath walk on the Northampton Arm. Please see below for full details.

GET YOUR WALKING BOOTS ON FOR A NORTHAMPTON ARM EXPEDITION Following the success of the Branch’s summer canal walk in the Braunston area in 2012, we are repeating the exercise this year with a walk centred on the Northampton Arm. The walk, on Sunday 7th July, will be led by former Endeavour editor Roger Hasdell. It is hoped he will be supported by former long-time Branch secretary Rodney Hardwick, who will recall the Branch’s sterling efforts against officialdom in the late 1980s to get the line of the A43 dual carriageway, the so-called Blisworth bypass, moved a little further away from the canal in places to achieve a (relatively) quieter environment, helped by raised earth banking. Meet at 11am at the second lock down on the Arm, adjacent to the road to Rothersthorpe where parking is easier. It is proposed we walk to Lock 14 close to the Northampton to Rothersthorpe road (Banbury Lane), from where you can retrace your steps. Some, however, may like to end their walk at Lock 14 in which case we will be ferrying cars there (we shall be sorting this out on arrival when people can make their wishes known). Enthusiastic walkers may even elect to press on towards Northampton – but remember you have to make your own way back! No strict timetable is being imposed but think in terms of the outing lasting between 2-3 hours. Please bring whatever refreshments you like, but the finishing time will allow ample scope for those so inclined to adjourn to a convenient hostelry. Any queries, please ring Roger on 01604 767212 in the week preceding the walk. The IWA may not agree with opinions expressed in this magazine, but encourages publication as a matter of interest. Nothing printed may be construed as policy or an official announcement unless so stated, otherwise the Association accepts no liability for any matter in the magazine. Neither the editor nor IWA can accept responsibility for any errors or omissions in the magazine, and opinions stated are those of individual contributors. We will, however, gladly publish corrections if notified. The editor reserves the right to shorten or modify articles published in the interests of clarity or space.

Canal adoption schemes in Northampton Branch area


Here is a list of known adoption schemes already agreed with the Canal & River Trust in the Northampton Branch area:. Buckingham Canal Society - adoption of Cosgrove Lock and canal to A5. Contact: Athina Beckett 01908 661217or Stoke Bruerne Canal Partnership – from Blisworth Tunnel south portal to Bottom Lock. Contact: Helen Westlake (Chairman) 01908 542414. E-mail is Blisworth Canal Partnership – from Blisworth Tunnel north portal to Gayton Junction. Contact: Jan Andrews 07919 003704 / 01604858023. Braunston Canal Society – from Braunston Tunnel west portal to junction with Oxford Canal. Contact: IWA Northampton –Northampton Arm. Contact:

Your volunteer help is needed at Daventry Daventry Canal Society is applying to the Canal & River Trust to adopt the canal from Norton Junction to the east portal of Braunston Tunnel and is looking for volunteers to help with this rewarding project. Like other adoptions, the Society will be carrying out tasks that would otherwise not get done within the CRT’s tight operational budgets, such as litter picking, trimming back hedges and other small jobs required to help keep the canal area clean and tidy.

GRAND JUNCTION BOAT COMPANY Boat Building and Fitting, Marine Engineers, Electricians, Agents for Yanmar Diesel Engines CANAL MAINTENANCE YARD, BLISWORTH ARM, NORTHAMPTON NN7 3EF Tel: 01604-858043


Matters Arising It was reported that Richard Thomas was unable to do talk on 9th April but will re-schedule to September.

Adoption of Northampton Arm

Initial meeting with CRT held on 17th January with general agreement reached on what the Branch wanted to take on and how to proceed.


There are 483 members (309 memberships).

Boat Gathering

Clean-up of Westbridge Arm is scheduled for 28th April.


It was agreed that the Branch should put in a response to the moorings consultation, highlighting that there are no seven-day moorings at Bottom Lock, Stoke Bruerne.

Reports from Local Societies, Canal Partnerships etc

Buckingham Canal Society have been selected by WREN to receive a grant of ÂŁ69,985 to restore and re-water the section of canal at Bourton Meadow. They hope this will start in July. They have also adopted the canal and lock at Cosgrove and have been given permission by CRT for test trials to be carried out to re-water this section of the canal starting in March.


Adoption of Northampton Arm

It was reported that adoption forms had been completed and submitted. CRT had emailed back a number of suggested amendments which were discussed, mainly health and safety issues relating to working at heights (painting lift bridges) and use of power tools. It was agreed to purchase six grappling hooks and rope before the clean -up on 28th April.

Branch Meeting

Two speakers from CRT will talk about the adoption of the Northampton Arm at the AGM.

13 Membership

There are 484 members (310 memberships).

Boat Gathering

Four bookings had been received, with Raymond and Nutfield also attending. Plaques had been ordered.


It was noted that CRT have received around 600 replies, mostly negative, about mooring consultation. Agreed the Branch should submit a response in favour.

Reports from Local Societies, Canal Partnerships etc

Buckingham Canal Society. Good progress, with CRT approving test trials for re-watering 500 metres at Cosgrove. By end of the year, the Society hopes to have both ends in water. Stoke Bruerne Canal Partnership. Planning application submitted for removal of weighing machine in dry dock. The lock island by top lock will be restored now picnic tables etc have been removed. Northampton County Council tourist department will be producing information boards giving details of key tourist sites. One will be in the Museum car park whilst other sites around the county will be advertising Stoke Bruerne’s attractions.


Adoption of Northampton Arm

Bernard Morton reported that David Higgins was interested in being involved with the adoption of the Northampton Arm sub-committee and should be invited along to the next Branch committee meeting with a view of co-opting him onto the main Branch committee. It was agreed to make £50 donation to Braunston Canal Society who have just adopted the section of canal from the tunnel to Braunston Junction

Branch Meeting

Richard Thomas ‘s talk on the Manchester Ship Canal has been rescheduled for September.


There are 479 members (308 memberships).

14 Boat Gathering

Only 12 confirmed bookings; the minimum required to break even is 25. Emails to be sent to those who had attended the 2010 and 2011 Gatherings and those who had booked for 2012 to try and increase numbers. A deadline was set for 23rd April; if 25 boat entries are not reached, then the event would have to be cancelled.


Lynda Payton reported that proposed changes to moorings at popular locations had been put on hold, with CRT extending the consultation period. Major repairs were needed on lock 12 of the Aylesbury Arm due to imploded walls. Cost of repairs would come from contingency fund.

Reports from Local Societies, Canal Partnerships etc

Stoke Bruerne Canal Partnership. The partnership had won £150k grant for funding of interpretation panels on canalside. Friends of Canal Museum. Had just won funding from the Arts Council for replacement lighting — total cost £61k which will be made up by £56k Arts Council and £2,500 each from the Friends and CRT Asset Dept. The restoration of Sculptor is still in contention for a Waterways Renaissance Award.

May Election of Officers

Officers for the coming year: Chairman, Bernard Morton; Secretary, Sandie Morton; Vice-Chairman, Eric Young (unable to attend, will ask if he is willing to continue); Treasurer, Alex Madisons; Membership Secretary, Geoff Wood; Social Secretary, Graham Treagus; Publicity Officer, Lynda Payton; Magazine Editor/Website, Tony Clarke; Planning Officers, Alex Madisons and Geoff Wood; Rally Chairman, Michael Butler; Nene Navigation Officer, Bernard Morton. In his absence, Geoff Wood to be asked if he will continue with the above roles.

Adoption of the Northampton Arm

Bernard Morton introduced David Higgins to the committee to handle the adoption of the Arm. He had proposals for work around Lock 17, and a provisional date of 2nd July was agreed for the first work party, subject to approval by CRT. continued on page 16


Now fully open


Diesel  Pump-out  Well stocked chandlery  Groceries Pay us a visit, just browse and see what we have to offer Open daily 9am –6pm ALL YEAR ROUND Tel 01327 844639 E-mail:

DAY BOAT HIRE FROM BRAUNSTON OUZEL 11 Cruise either towards Napton or Hillmorton and return The Ouzel 11 seats up to 12 people. It has hot and cold water in the galley, crockery, cutlery and glasses on board, a gas ring, kettle and flush toilet. Buoyancy aids on request. Prices: Weekends and Bank Holidays: £150.00 Monday - Friday: £115.00 Returnable deposit: £50.00 UNION CANAL CARRIERS LTD, Braunston Pump House, Dark Lane, Braunston, Daventry, Northants. NN11 7HJ

Tel 01788 890784

Fax 01788 891950

THE WHARF INN BUGBROOKE Cornhill Lane, Bugbrooke, NN7 3QB by Bridge 36 on the Grand Union Canal

Tel: 01604 832585 FOOD SERVED EVERY DAY



16 Branch Meetings

A guided walk down the Arm from lock 2 (Rothersthorpe road bridge) to Lock 14 will be held on Sunday 7th July.


There are 472 members (304 memberships). representing a small decline. National figures are also declining, which is worrying.

Boat Gathering

All agreed that it was disappointing having to cancel the 2013 Gathering but with only 13 firm bookings and another four perhaps, there was no alternative.

Reports from Local Societies, Canal Partnerships etc

Friends of Canal Museum. Sculptor restoration project had won through to the finals of the Waterways Renaissance Awards. Stoke Bruerne Canal Partnership. A work party was set up at short notice and around nine people attended, clearing weeds and painting. Planning application for removal of weighing machine has been approved.

ARM ADOPTION: a message to all Northampton Branch members by David Higgins As you may be aware, the Branch has just adopted the Northampton Arm of the Grand Union Canal. What does this mean to the Branch? More to the point, what does it mean to us, the members (you and I)? It means that we, working alongside CRT, will be helping to look after a substantial and significant piece of real estate, and will help control the general appearance and well-being of this beautiful stretch of water. Of course, we can all be extremely cynical with our remarks! Or we can take this as a golden opportunity to do something really positive. This, then, is our chance to actually do something in which we can all partake. Hopefully, the work will be seen, and we may even enjoy doing the various jobs and be praised for our efforts! I had a chance meeting with your Branch Chairman — in Sydney, Australia, of all places. We had not been talking long before the topic of matters boating came up, during which time I rather rashly said what my views were on this vital and neglected part of the system and offered my thoughts on what should be done. The Chairman then said: “Well,” (thinking there's one born every minute), “we might have just the role for you!” I then was asked if I continued on page 18



continued from page 16

would like to take part as the head of the maintenance effort. That, members, is the story of how I am where I am. It was the result of a chance meeting with a (canal) man in Sydney. We both share a love of boating and are passionate about all things "canally". So far so good, there are some of you who might just spot a slim resemblance to the famous Rolt and Aickman meeting on the Tardebigge Flight that day in 1946. So, here I am to try to do my part in this very exciting project. I am completely new to the IWA (joining only recently), so you will see l carry no baggage and start completely fresh. All I would ask is for us all to "give it a go". I don't expect us to be hitting the ground running or anything like that. What I shall do is to walk the flight, take some notes and form some sort of a plan. I shall then liaise with CRT via a schedule of meetings (where would we be without meetings?) from which I hope to get some idea of the limitations of the brief. Then, with your help, perhaps we can make some sort of start fairly soon. I am hoping that some small tasks could be done during weekdays, so that those of us who find we have some time on our hands can get out from "under her feet" and spend time in the sun having “fun in the bushes". To this end, we are planning our first work party on Tuesday 2nd July. Further details will be announced shortly. Other activities will be planned for weekends for those of you working. I hope to bring you more up to date after the initial meetings with CRT. Till then, do like me — walk the flight and bring any ideas to our first meeting. It is worth saying again that this is a Branch commitment, but let us all enjoy the challenge. Wish me luck on my first foray into the unknown! I hope to see you all soon on the job, so to speak. Please feel free to email me your comments/ideas and particularly to let me know if you are able to join our inaugural work party on 2nd July at 10am by Lock 17 at Far Cotton, Northampton. e-mail


BLACKSMITH in Tug Store at tunnel entrance, Stoke Bruerne Wrought Iron Work for Boat or Garden

For further details, either visit or ring O1604 859726 / 07761 833049


Volunteers get down to work at Stoke Bruerne Nine volunteers joined the Canal & River Trust’s Volunteer Co‐ordinator  Miriam Tedder on 29th April for a work party at Stoke Bruerne Top Lock  (No.14) between 9.30am‐5pm to paint both sets of lock gates, bollards and  checking stumps as well as carrying out weeding, moss clearance and grass  edging. The work party was organised by members of the Stoke Bruerne  Canal Partnership who are currently considering an adop on agreement  with the Canal & River Trust. IWA Northampton Branch is a member of the  Stoke Bruerne Canal Partnership. Anyone interested in joining a work party  should contact  David Blagrove on 01604 862174. Volunteers take a camera break during their day’s labours


Gathering Plaques for Sale  Because of the cancellation of this year’s Branch Gathering, we have 40 memento plaques for sale. The plaques also mark the adoption of the Northampton Arm by the Branch and are therefore of specialist historical significance.

 Also available are plaques from previous Gatherings.  Plaques are priced at £4.00 each and are available from Sandie Morton, IWA Branch secretary, at 14 Baker Street, Gayton, Northampton NN7 3EZ.

 Please contact Sandie before ordering to confirm availability and arrange delivery details by phoning 01604 858294; mobile 07917 163860; or email

2012 design

Marking the Diamond Jubilee and the Olympics

2013 design

Marking the Adoption of the Northampton Arm


Celebrating our Waterways Heritage and The Canal Museum’s 50th Birthday Stoke Bruerne’s Gala Weekend 15th-16th June 2013 A fun packed programme with boats, food, drink, live music and entertainment is sure to keep all the family entertained at Stoke Bruerne’s Annual Gala event on 15-16th June. The Canal Museum, which celebrates its 50th anniversary this year, will be host to a large number of canal craft demonstrators including Roses and Castles painting, rag rug making, quilting, crochet lace and crochet, pottery, wood turning, rope splicing, decorative ropework and blacksmithing. Working or historic boats will be there in abundance with trade boats and stalls, theatre, dance, children’s activities, guided heritage walks and, of course, a chance to take a boat trip on Indian Chief or Charlie into the famous 1¾ mile long Blisworth Tunnel. Stoke Bruerne’s resident blacksmith, Bob Nightingale, will be giving regular demonstrations in his forge at the tunnel entrance and for the first time this year, The Navigation pub will be holding a beer festival all weekend with the festival beer being delivered by narrow boat from Burton-upon-Trent. Kate Saffin joins us again this year with her one woman theatre shows and children’s theatre workshops and The Kevin O’Regan Band (also booked for the Crick Show) will be performing on Saturday night. Popular Braunston based duo Ramshackle will be entertaining all weekend and don’t forget to watch out for our special water based spectacle. Will the pirates be returning or will it be something completely new? You’ll have to come along and find out. As usual the weekend kicks off early with an evening musical jam session and fish and chip supper on the canalside at 7.30pm on Friday 14th June (food tickets on sale), accompanied by a real ale bar on the Museum Green run by local pub The Boat Inn. All-in-all we can expect an activity-packed weekend for families with plenty to interest everybody. Admission to the event is FREE. Car parking in the village car parks £3 (subject to agreement of operators). More information can be found at:


Buckingham Canal Society Report By Chairman Athina Beckett This is a very exciting time for Buckingham Canal Society. The planning application to re-water Bourton Meadow, submitted to Aylesbury Vale District Council, has been approved and a grant has been awarded to the Society by WREN for ÂŁ69,985. This work will take place this year and the result will be that the Bourton Meadow stretch will reappear as a proper canal once again. The Society has adopted the Cosgrove end of the canal from the Canal & River Trust, and work will also commence this year with the outcome being yet another stretch of the canal in water. Now of course we have to join up both ends and that will take more time. With support from our members and funding via grant applications, however, there is much enthusiasm for this and significant interest from our Patrons and various organisations. At our Bourton Meadow site, Waterline Solutions is the company selected to carry out the work to reline the canal and we hope this work will start in June. Training sessions for our volunteers to learn to drive excavators and dumper trucks were arranged over a weekend in March at Bourton Meadow, as the CRT will only allow trained operators on site at Cosgrove. This proved to be a very successful weekend with

23 several volunteers now able to drive both excavators and tracked dumper trucks. Over the last few months our volunteers have been preparing the site at Bourton Meadow before the contractors start work and have been assisted by pupils from Furze Down School. This work is now completed and our work parties have moved to Cosgrove where trials to re-water this section of canal take place over several weekends in May. These re-watering trials include building bunds at every 200 metres and then filling spaces in between with water and monitoring the seepage rate and, of course, hoping the water stays in the canal bed!

NEW BRANCH MEMBERS ARE WELCOMED We extend a warm welcome to the following IWA members who have joined Northampton Branch since the last issue of Endeavour NEW MEMBERS Mr C Long, Wigan Mr G Clough, Cambridge MEMBERS WHO HAVE MOVED TO THE BRANCH Mrs J G Bramley, Kettering Miss K Dodington, Stoke Bruerne Mr R E & Mrs D J Feaking, Duston Northampton We look forward to meeting you all at Branch events

Receiving Endeavour electronically To help keep the production costs of Endeavour within acceptable and affordable limits, your Branch Committee again requests that you consider receiving the newsletter electronically, thus saving on the most costly aspect窶馬amely, postage charges. Some of you, of course, have already signed up to accept the electronic version, which means that you see the illustrations in colour, but the numbers are still a low percentage of our total Branch membership. We realise there will always be many of you who will prefer to remain with the printed version, but those who wish to switch, then please email Geoff Wood at and he will do the necessary. Editor



SUPPLIES We are a family run, customer friendly business based adjacent to Bridge 32 at Nether Heyford. Our service point is clear of moored boats making your stop quick and easy. We offer the following services:

 DIESEL – always competively priced  PUMP OUT – no meter clock here  BLUE TOILET FLUID  ODORLOS – organic waste tank treatment



 CALOR GAS – all sizes of bottled gas including Camping Gaz.

 SOLID FUELS – all types of smokeless fuel or coal. Plus firelighters, sticks and logs.  CHARNWOOD STOVES – all sizes of multi-fuel stoves with or without boilers  MORRIS OILS – popular grades of engine oil plus water resistant grease  FUEL SET FUEL CONDITIONER

Most Major Credit Cards Accepted. Open: 8.00am to 5.30pm Monday to Friday, 8.00am to 1.00pm on Saturdays

Fred Tarry Bridge Cottage Furnace Lane Nether Heyford Northampton, NN7 3JY

Telephone/Fax: 01327-341202

01604 862428

RECYCLING REMINDER The Branch recycles ink jet cartridges and mobile phones to raise cash to help local projects. Please bring them along to Branch meetings or ring 01604 767212 to arrange collection. Please no Epson ink tanks.


Blisworth Canal Partnership presents a weekend of entertainment AN EXHIBITION OF THE LATE JIM PAYLER’S PHOTOGRAPHS Saturday June 22nd 11am - 4pm Sunday June 23rd 11am - 2pm BLISWORTH VILLAGE HALL FREE ENTRY

Copies of images will be available upon request The late Jim Payler was often seen out and about with his camera. He started taking photos of workboats and canal scenes in the early 1950s and the passion grew from there. His images were often in the waterways press. A much awaited exhibition of his large collection of unpublished work will be on show. For more information please contact:

Sunday June 23rd 3.30pm onwards in The Old Rectory Gardens,Blisworth (entry is through the garden’s towpath gate just south of Mill Bridge 51)

BEYOND THE VEIL presented by the

MIKRON THEATRE Sponsored by Blisworth Canal Partnership Free entry (donation bucket at the end of the performance, proceeds to Mikron) Bring your own chairs Both venues will be well signposted with refreshments available. All welcome, no pre-booking or tickets needed, just turn up and enjoy!






Grand Union, Oxford & Leics Canals Rivers Nene and Thames RING: 07889 10 99 39 RGBARCOS@BTINTERNET.COM

HIGH HOUSE MARINA LTD High House Wharf, Heyford Lane, Weedon, Northants NN7 4SF OUR SMALL MARINA (ONLY 24 BOATS) IS A VERY FRIENDLY PLACE TO BE MOORED, HENCE OUR CLIENTS TEND TO STAY PUT Our car park is quite secure and well hidden from the road WE DO NOW AND AGAIN HAVE A VACANCY, SO WHY NOT GIVE US A CALL? Contact Phil Gardner on 01327 349519, E-mail:



ADVERTISING All advertisements must comply with the requirements of the Trades Descriptions Act and avoid misrepresentation of goods offered for sale. The Business Advertisements (Disclosure) Order 1977 requires that businesses seeking to sell goods must clearly indicate this in an advertisement.

COMMERCIAL RATES (suggested donations) 1/4 Page (box) £12.00 1/2 Page (box) £25.00 Full Page £40.00 Discount of 10% for 4 issues Other sizes by arrangement

CLASSIFIEDS (suggested donations) £1.50 for 22 words, 15p each additional word £3.50 for box around classified advertisement (nb. telephone numbers count as one word) £3.50 for photographs

BRANCH SOCIAL MEETINGS Regular Branch Social Meetings are held on the second Tuesday of each month from September to May inclusive at

THE WALNUT TREE INN, BLISWORTH at 8pm All members and non-members welcome. Food and drink available

Next meeting: Tuesday, 10th September Speaker: Richard Thomas — Manchester Ship Canal (this has been re-scheduled from April) The next edition of Endeavour will be published August 2013


WHO’S WHO IN NORTHAMPTON BRANCH 2013/2014 Bernard Morton

Branch Meetings

07785 375787

Graham Treagus

E-mail: bernard.morton

E-mail: graham.treagus


Branch Secretary Sandie Morton E-mail: sandie.morton

Membership Secretary & Planning Officer Geoff Wood E-mail:

Deputy Chairman & Police Liaison Officer Eric Young E-mail:

Boat Gathering Chairman Michael Butler E-mail:

Boat Gathering

Treasurer & Planning Officer

Sub-Committee members

Alex Madisons E-mail: alex.madisons

Newsletter & Website Editor Tony Clarke 07939 977859 E-mail: tony.clarke

Michael Butler (Chairman), Catriona Butler, Linda Clarke, Tony Clarke, Roger Hasdell, Alex Madisons, Bernard Morton, Sandie Morton,, Sam Samuells and Eric Young (also occasional members Ian Bekusch)

Non-Committee posts

Publicity Officer


Lynda Payton

Archivist, Endeavour Advertising & Distribution


Catriona Butler 01604 473756

Roger Hasdell 01604 767212

Profile for The Inland Waterways Association

Endeavour May 2013  

Newsletter, Inland Waterways Association, Northampton Branch

Endeavour May 2013  

Newsletter, Inland Waterways Association, Northampton Branch