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SUMMER 2012 | ISSUE 236

waterways EEP

Meet Lynne Berry

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YS

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Essex Helmsman’s School

Welsh Waters FROM THE LLANGOLLEN TO THE NEATH & TENNANT DOWN THE DRAINS

THE NEXT GENERATION

SLOUGHTHAMES LINK

Lincolnshire waterways

Focus on youth

Ambitious plan reviewed


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CONTENTS 3.

AGENDA

Summer 2012 Ten Good Reasons to be an IWA Member

The Column of the National Chairman

IWA AT WORK

9.

What’s been happening around the branches

YOUR SUPPORT HELPS IWA TO:

12. NEWS A round up of the main stories from IWA and beyond

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16. FREIGHT Commercial carrying developments around the network

20. ESSEX WATERWAYS HELMSMAN’S SCHOOL Expert boathandling tuition…the IWA way

22. THE NEW CANAL The prospects for a new waterway linking the Slough Arm with the Thames

24. WELSH WATERS Exploring the Principality, from the Llangollen in the north to the Neath & Tennant in the south

32. MEET THE TRUSTEES We talk to Lynne Berry about her ambitions for the Canal & River Trust

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34. THE NEXT GENERATION Attracting young people to the world of the waterways

36. GOING DOWN THE DRAINS A visit to Lincolnshire’s remotest waterways

38. EVENTS DIARY What’s on in 2012 – IWA festivals and more

43. CUTTINGS What the media has been saying about waterway issues

COVER PICTURE Crossing Pontycysyllte Aqueduct on the Llangollen Canal.

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ROBIN SMITHETT

WATERWAYS EDITOR: Keith Goss Tel: 01283 742951 E-mail: k.goss@wwonline.co.uk ART EDITOR: Kerry Hogston ADVERTISEMENT MANAGER: Ian Sharpe Tel: 01283 742977 E-mail: ian.sharpe@wwonline.co.uk ADVERTISING DESIGN: Jill Brown, Clare Salisbury ADVERTISING PRODUCTION: Samantha Lloyd E-mail: s.lloyd@wwonline.co.uk EDITORIAL BOARD: Neil Edwards, Jo Gilbertson, Keith Goss, Clive Henderson, Peter Johns, Jim Shead REPROGRAPHICS: Waterways World Ltd, 151 Station Street, Burton-on-Trent, Staffordshire, DE14 1BG. Printed in England by Warners (Midlands) PLC, Bourne, Lincs Articles may be reproduced provided permission is obtained and acknowledgement made. ISSN 0969-0654 

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• Campaign for properly funded waterways • Provide a voice for you • Help improve your local waterways • Defend the waterways from unwelcome development • Give practical financial and political support for waterways restoration • Provide expert advice for waterway managers and restoration groups • Organise restoration holidays for young people • Provide over 5,000 days of volunteer labour each year • Arrange affordable insurance for waterway organisations • Enable greater appreciation of the waterways through education and experience

MEMBERS’ SERVICES The following special offers are now available exclusively for IWA members: Channel Glaze - 10% discount on double glazing Cotswold Outdoor - 10% discount Europcar - Special hire rates to IWA members Lee Sanitation Ltd. - 10% on orders over £100 Midland Chandlers - 5% discount Narrowboat Services - 10% discount RoadPro - 5% discount UK Boat Hire - 15% discount UltimateBerths.com - Free Listing Willowbridge Marina - 10% discount on chandlery purchases and services in the yard Worcester Marine Windows Ltd - 5% discount

Please note: All discounts and offers are entirely at the organisers’ discretion. To take advantage of these offers please go to: www.waterways.org.uk/support_us/members_ area/member_discounts_special_offers_public IWA has teamed up with both Navigators & General and River Canal Rescue to enable an insurance facility that is unique to the market, with the added benefit that every policy taken out and subsequently renewed helps IWA, and thus furthers our charitable work for the waterways. These specialist inland waterway insurance policies are tailored to fit your needs, covering loss and damage to your vessel, protecting you against legal claims, paying for injury and damages caused to other property and providing the security of inclusive breakdown cover. Obtaining a quote couldn’t be easier, simply fill in a few details on our online form, and one of Navigators & General team will call you back.

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Founded: 1946, Incorporated 1958 Registered Office: Island House, Moor Road, Chesham, HP5 1WA Tel: 01494 783453 E-mail: iwa@waterways.org.uk Web site: www.waterways.org.uk Chief Executive – Neil Edwards Company Secretary – Helen Elliott-Adams Campaign & Communications Manager – Jo Gilbertson Nothing printed in Waterways may be construed as policy or an official announcement unless stated, otherwise IWA accepts no liability for any matter in the magazine. Although every care is taken with advertising matters no responsibility whatsoever can be accepted for any matter advertised.

Where a photo credit includes a note such as CC-BY-SA, the image is made available under that Creative Commons licence; full details at www.creativecommons.org

| IWA waterways - Summer 2012

The policy incorporates many features that are unique including: • Membership of River Canal Rescue • Dedicated insurance cover for owners who permanently live aboard their boats (additional cost) • Personal public liability • Marina benefits • Medical expenses cover • £3 million pounds third party cover The Inland Waterways Association is authorised and regulated by the Financial Services Authority.

IWA ANNUAL SUBSCRIPTION RATES •Adult/single £30.00

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Progress continues Progress towards the Canal & River Trust launch seems to be going to plan and much that we have campaigned and lobbied for in recent years has been reflected in its structure, constitution and objectives. The funding settlement agreed between the CRT Transition Trustees and the Government is generally believed to provide security for the nation’s waterways for the foreseeable future. Plans for a launch in June are in hand with the only contingency being the time it takes Parliament to carry through proposals that seem to have all party support - so let’s hope that the water shortages do not spoil its first year. With British Waterways/CRT, we jointly hosted a successful workshop in February for a wide-ranging group of waterway supporters to encourage a feeling of joint pride in past achievements, as well as establishing the foundations for working together for shared aims in the future. There was mutual enthusiasm that more can be achieved by all interest groups working in cooperation. I was delighted and grateful at the level of support that enabled three IWA trustees, including myself, to be elected among those representing boaters on CRT’s Council. Whilst IWA seeks to campaign for all aspects of the waterways, IWA’s roots lie in navigation, using the waterways as well as conserving and restoring them, and our members are active throughout the country doing this. I therefore feel that IWA’s trustees are particularly well qualified to represent the best interests of IWA’s objectives, members and boaters on the body providing the conscience for the new Trust. IWA’s committees spend time meeting with navigation authorities to support waterways being used for their purpose, navigation, and we fought to have use for navigation stated as the CRT’s first charitable purpose when it was missing in the first draft thereof. So I hope that our support for navigation is now clearer. I was further delighted that all four of those elected (in their personal capacity) are IWA members. I very much hope we can live up to the expectations entrusted to us - we will certainly try to do so. Please contact me directly with any questions or concerns, and I will share these with the other three elected if you wish. We have attended our launch meeting of the CRT Council, which went very well and gave us confidence that there is a breadth of knowledge and support alongside CRT to make it succeed. The final tranche of Partnership chairs and boards have been announced and the Transition Trustees have been adopted as the CRT Trustee Board after three additional members were recruited. Despite my reservations expressed in my previous column, I am now more impressed at the expertise available to CRT at its launch and I know how much time many have put into making it a success. I hope that all waterway supporters will now do their bit, when they can, towards that end.

A new chapter in waterway history The establishment of CRT is of course an ongoing project and will move a step nearer to completion when the EA Navigations are added in a few years time. I am sure that IWA will work alongside and support it whilst it moves forward towards delivering a vision set in principle by Robert Aickman 60 years ago. I don’t want to understate what has already been achieved by many within IWA and elsewhere over recent years in launching CRT. I have seen major change over nearly

four years whilst I have been your chairman and despite the heading of this section I hope that when we look back in ten years or so we will realise it was the beginning of a new volume of waterway history and not just a new chapter. Throughout my life the waterways have been owned and run by the State with varying objectives and success. Few will dispute that the role of IWA, founded before their nationalisation, in pursuing its aims to conserve, restore and use waterways, has been essential in keeping them on the agenda and thus able to take advantage of this new era. In the 1950s and ‘60s it was challenging work and we now approach our own jubilee milestones to celebrate, such as Stourbridge. We are working with the Stourbridge Navigation Trust to recognise the importance of that campaign and the work done to hold our National Rally of Boats there in August 1962. If you were there please let us have your photographs or recollections. That rally required us to stand up to officialdom and to test the law to establish the principle of volunteers working on something that they valued more than its owners did at the time. I hope that we all still have that belief in our blood that if it is good for our waterways, then it is worth doing or supporting.

Please give me a wave I don’t normally like to fill this column with my personal boating activities but as I have been lucky enough to have secured a place in the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Flotilla on the River Thames on Sunday 3rd June, I will break that habit and disclose the name of my boat. I like to cruise anonymously as a relaxation normally and usually achieve this. If you are there I hope you will wave to me or will keep an eye out on TV for nb Nanshe from Lapworth within the group of 40 narrowboats taking part among nearly 1,000 boats of all descriptions, many of which represent the inland waterways of Britain. London’s waterways summer launches with our Cavalcade event at Little Venice on the May Day weekend followed by the Jubilee weekend and then the Olympic events. I can understand why some of you are planning to head elsewhere to avoid it all, but wherever you are planning to go I hope you have enough water underneath to enjoy your trip.

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IWA at WORK E-mail your news and photos to iwa@jim-shead.com

IWA at Work News from around the branches

PARLIAMENTARIAN OF THE YEAR SUPPORTS LOCAL CAMPAIGNING Fiona Bruce, MP for Congleton, was named Inland Waterways Parliamentarian of the Year on 28th February for her work on the All Party Parliamentary Waterways Group, of which she is treasurer (see also page 14). Fiona is also a member of IWA and has demonstrated her support for the Cheshire Locks Project. This is a partnership led by IWA’s Stoke-on-Trent Branch and the Trent & Mersey Canal Society. She was introduced to the project at Church Lawton, where she had tea with the Branch during her campaign to be elected, and at the Middlewich Festival where she saw evidence of the public support for the campaign. Fiona Bruce at the Middlewich Festival.

WORKING WITH THE LOCAL COMMUNITY For some time now IWA Lichfield Branch has been working with local people in Rugeley to improve the Trent & Mersey Canal in the town. In one of its regular working parties, it teamed up with Rugeley Lions and other local groups including the Ash Tree Boat Club, to plant 406 saplings along the towpath. Some 23 volunteers planted the young trees to fill in the gaps in the hedgerow. This is part of the Woodland Trust’s ‘Jubilee Woods’ appeal, whereby they give packs of saplings free of charge to organisations who meet their criteria. A further tranche of trees will be planted in March by Armitage Scouts, with back-up from British Waterways and IWA. The branch is also hoping to secure a further 406 saplings for planting in November. Another small work party took place in Rugeley on 2nd March to clear scrub and litter on the offside in Rugeley. This is part of a plan to create winter, disabled and short-term moorings in Rugeley. The branch is working in partnership with Rugeley Open Spaces, British Waterways, Rugeley Lions and Rugeley Rugby Club to provide these improvements. It is hoped that facilities for boaters will also be provided in this area. More information about IWA’s Rugeley Project can be found on the IWA website and details of the scheduled work parties from Margaret Beardsmore, telephone 07581 794111 or email: margaret.beardsmore@ Scrub clearance in Rugeley. waterways.org.uk.

ETRURIA JUBILEE CANALS FESTIVAL

Etruria Festival.

The Etruria Jubilee Canals Festival, to be held on 2nd3rd June, will continue the traditions of the community event - one of the largest free events held in Stoke-on-Trent – which attracts thousands of visitors to the junction of the Trent & Mersey and Caldon canals on the first weekend of June each year. For the first time, the canals festival will be wholly organised by volunteers. IWA Stoke-on-Trent Branch and Etruria Boat Group volunteers have taken on the task of running the event. This year’s festival will celebrate the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee on the waterways at the heart of the Potteries. A jubilee flotilla and a giant jubilee tea party are among the events planned. Music and dance will complement colourful historic narrowboats moored along the towpaths in Etruria. There will be children’s activities, the historic beam engine in the Bone & Flint Mill will be ‘in steam’, and there will be traditional crafts, vintage vehicles, boats galore, entertainments and much more besides.

BRANCH SALES & PUBLICITY The IWA South London Branch stand was present at numerous events last year including Eltham Family Day, Angel Canal Festival, The Mayor’s Thames Festival, The Great River Race and Brixton Windmill Open Day. Its new display stand was used to good effect. The stand was built by IWA member Alan Furber. Over the year £1,050 was raised from sales and the long established Waterways Game. This year, IWA South London has a long list of events to attend but, with no National Festival, it will be a tall order to beat last year’s total. Help is needed at all events, as well as contributions towards Waterways Game prizes of all kinds. As well as the cash generated by sales, well-equipped stands have the advantage of attracting the public’s attention and giving a better opportunity for publicising IWA’s message and recruiting new South London Branch stand. members.

Is your branch doing something that demonstrates the great work that our members do? If so let us know - send your story and pictures to iwa@jim-shead.com.

IWA waterways - Summer 2012 |

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waterways KEEPING OUR WATERWAYS ALIVE

IWA Annual General Meeting

I

n accordance with Article 71 of IWA’s Articles of Association, notice is hereby given that the Annual General Meeting of the Association will be held on Saturday 29th September 2012 at 2pm. The venue for the meeting will be at King Edward VI Grammar School, 63 Broomfield Road, Chelmsford, CM1 3SX. Full details of the meeting will be provided in the next edition of Waterways. In accordance with Article 43, nominations to stand as an elected trustee (three places available) are sought. Nominations are also sought for the posts of region chairman for North West Region (to serve until 2015 AGM), South West Region (to serve until 2015 AGM) and West Midlands Region (to serve until 2015 AGM).

Become a Trustee Any member can submit a nomination for a nationally elected trustee, which should be accompanied by confirmation from the nominee that they are willing to be elected as a trustee

of the Association. Nominations for region chairmen should be made by a member of the relevant region. The nominee should also be a member of that region. All nominations should be accompanied by a brief biography or statement not exceeding 400 words, for publication as part of any ballot paper with the notice convening the AGM to be issued in the next (August) edition of Waterways. All nominations should be received by no later than 2pm on Friday 6th July (i.e. 85 days before the AGM). For those who might be thinking of putting themselves forward – and some new candidates are needed as some retiring trustees have indicated that they are not available for re-election – there are some detailed notes for the guidance of prospective candidates at www.waterways.org.uk/pdf/ constitution/information_for_potential_new_trustees. The notes below, which attempt to explain how the Association is organised, give an overview of how trustees and other officers of the Association fit in to the overall structure.

IWA’S ORGANISATION

The above chart shows how the constituent parts of IWA fit together. The Association is governed by a board of trustees who are partly elected on a regional basis, and partly elected on a national basis. The procedure for election of nationally elected trustees is covered in IWA’s Articles of Association, and for regionally elected trustees is set out in rules devised by the full

12

| IWA waterways - Summer 2012

board of trustees. The full rules are available on the website at www.waterways.org.uk/information/governing_documents/ national_constitution. There are a number of national committees, each reporting to the board of trustees. For each committee there is an agreed role and operating arrangements, with areas of delegated responsibility


Summer 2012 | NEWS | FREIGHT | RESTORATION

– these are all available at www.waterways.org.uk/information/ national_committees/national_committees. The current national committees are: ● Finance Committee ● Navigation Committee ● Restoration Committee ● Waterway Recovery Group ● Promotions & Communications Committee ● Remuneration Committee (decides remuneration for senior employees) ● Awards Panel (produces recommendations for national awards from nominations received) The members of these committees are appointed by trustees, usually by approving recommendations from the committees themselves following advertisement for members. Appointments are usually for three-year terms. Some committees have subcommittees or working groups. The main ones are Inland Waterways Freight Group, which is a sub-committee of Navigation Committee, and Investment Working Group, which is a sub-committee of Finance Committee. For historical reasons, the Waterway Recovery Group committee is known as the ‘WRG Board’, and there is a wider ‘WRG Committee’ (not shown on the diagram) of active WRG organisers and volunteers. WRG maintains a distinct image with its own logo, with the ‘WRG Board’ delegated by trustees to run WRG’s operations, financed from within IWA’s budget, with the support of a full-time member of staff at Head Office (see left). WRG also has regional groups, which operate in a similar fashion to IWA branches – but without any fixed rules or byelaws. The Association has two subsidiary companies. One, Inland Waterways Enterprises Ltd, undertakes trading activity that is not entirely charitable in its own right, but which has the purpose of making a profit to raise funds for the Association. This company is run separately from the Association by a board of directors appointed by IWA’s trustees (hence the link on the chart is only shown as a dotted line). It is this mechanism that allows IWA to maintain overall control, but IWA does not engage in the company’s day-to-day management, other than services provided from Head Office, which are charged by IWA to Enterprises to ensure the trading company is not subsidised by the charity. There are two main parts of Enterprises: IWA Festivals, which is run by a sub-committee of the board, and the trading part, comprising the mail order operation (run by Head Office) and sales at shows and events (run by Promotions & Communications Committee). IWA Festivals also has a subcommittee to run Canalway Cavalcade.

The second subsidiary company is Essex Waterways Ltd, which manages the Chelmer & Blackwater Navigation in Essex. Again, this company is run by a board of directors appointed by IWA’s trustees, but otherwise operates independently of IWA (hence the link on the chart is only shown by a dotted line). Essex Waterways Ltd employs a full-time navigation manager, two other full-time and eleven part-time members of staff, one of whom is based at IWA Head Office at Chesham, the others are based on the navigation. Geographically, IWA is divided into eight regions, with the membership in each of these regions electing their own region chairman; each is therefore a regionally elected trustee. Within each of these regions are between four and six branches (plus any groups and sections, which have similar activities to branches but are not formally constituted as such). The operations of regions and branches are covered by byelaws formulated by trustees.

Managment Structure The Association employs a chief executive, appointed by trustees, who heads a staff (four full-time, eight part-time and three volunteers), mostly based at the Association’s Head Office at Chesham. The chief executive has responsibility for the dayto-day management of the Association, and the staff undertake work in running the Association’s administration, including the collection of membership subscriptions, general enquiries, running the website, e-mail arrangements, receiving and banking income, making payments for expenditure throughout IWA and both subsidiary companies, arranging insurance for IWA nonprofit making corporate members, running the mail order shop for Inland Waterways Enterprises Ltd, and providing support to all parts of the Association including WRG. Much of the Association’s campaign work at a national level is undertaken from Head Office by the Campaign & Communication Manager and his team, once policy is set by trustees and relevant committees (mostly Navigation Committee). This team also looks after publication of Waterways magazine and other IWA publications and promotional material. The Campaign & Communications Manager also has overall responsibility for membership recruitment for IWA. The Finance Manager is also the Association’s Company Secretary, and with her team looks after all company and charity compliance requirements, as well as management accounts and other support work for Finance Committee. The Membership Officer & Office Manager and her team look after all IWA membership records and administration as well as managing the Head Office building and facilities.

IWA LOBBYING PAYS OFF

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ritish Waterways has announced that it has reached agreement with the security services about Commercial Road Lock on the Limehouse Cut. As a result of the many representations made, particularly by IWA and St Pancras Cruising Club, the lock will be open for booked traffic for two hours each day during the Olympics period. The opening hours will be flexible to allow for boaters who wish to transit through the Olympic Control zone, or out onto the Thames, to make the passage in the shortest possible time. BW expects to announce shortly the arrangements for booking passage through London during the Olympics period.

Paul Strudwick, IWA London Region Chairman, said “This is great news for all boaters who use the waterways in London. IWA and St Pancras Cruising Club have vigorously campaigned to achieve the opening of this lock during the Olympics. It will allow boaters wishing to travel to and from the River Lee safely without being forced to use the tidal River Thames”. IWA has offered to assist in operating the lock. Anyone interested in volunteering to help-out should contact Paul Strudwick, London Region Chairman, by emailing paul.strudwick@waterways.org.uk or call on 07885 240291.

IWA waterways - Summer 2012 |

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waterways KEEPING OUR WATERWAYS ALIVE

Fiona Bruce wins IWA Award

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iona Bruce, Conservative MP for Congleton, Cheshire, has been named IWA’s Parliamentarian of the Year for 2012. The award was announced at IWA’s annual parliamentary awards dinner, held at the House of Commons on 28th February. The event was attended by almost 40 MPs and peers representing all the major political parties. IWA Chairman Clive Henderson paid tribute to Fiona Bruce, saying she had given generous parliamentary and practical support for the inland waterways during the previous twelve months. Ms Bruce, a member of IWA, has two Association branches within her constituency. She is treasurer of the All-Party Parliamentary Waterways Group and played a key part in Parliament’s role in overseeing the formation of the Canal & River Trust. It was felt that she had been especially

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effective at the Parliamentary Waterways Group hearings, where her questions to the new CRT transition trustees were forthright and searching.

Red Diesel Update

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M Revenue & Customs has issued advice to boaters and is consulting on changes to legislation concerning the use of red diesel on the continent. The issue follows actions taken by Belgian customs who have decided to take action against any visiting vessels found with marked red diesel in their fuel tanks. The draft amendment, published by HMRC on 20th February for consultation, does not propose to extend the territorial scope of the 1979 Act and would therefore still neither prohibit nor authorise the use of marked red diesel for propelling private pleasure craft outside UK territorial waters. However, other coastal states may apply their own legislation to vessels navigating in their own territorial waters. So far, Belgium appears to be the only country in which fines may be imposed on boaters where red diesel is detected in a boat’s fuel tank used for propulsion irrespective as to whether the correct level of duty has been paid or not.

IWA has been involved in detailed discussions with HMRC along with British Marine Federation and RYA on this matter. There is to be no change to arrangements for the use of red diesel on inland waters in the UK provided the correct amount of duty has been paid.

Prince of Wales to be Patron of the CRT

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is Royal Highness, The Prince of Wales, a long-time supporter of the waterways, will become the first Patron of the new Canal & River Trust. The news was announced at the first meeting of the Trust’s Council in Birmingham on 28th March, where members confirmed the appointment of the charity’s founding trustees. In addition, the Prince has agreed to continue in his role as Patron of the Waterways Trust in Scotland, where BW Scotland is to

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Cooks on Camp

remain under State control and thus does not have a patron.

njoy feeding your family and friends? A dab hand with cakes? Ever thought you might be able to turn your hand to feeding a bunch of hungry Navvies but scared of not knowing what you’d be letting yourself in for? The Waterway Recovery Group is running a training and information day for cooks (old, new and potential) at Rowington Village Hall on Saturday 12th May. The agenda will include what’s expected from a food hygiene perspective, budgets and a chance to discuss any worries, recipes, menu ideas, how to scale up generally and a chance to meet some of the leaders requiring cooking assistance. WRG is always looking for cooks and any offers of help are much appreciated. You don’t have to commit to a whole week – even just a couple of evening meals can make a big difference to a camp that doesn’t have a permanent cook. And why not team up with a friend to share the workload? WRG run a series of canal camps throughout the year across the whole of the UK. Whilst Rowington is the location of the training, we would be looking for cooks from all around the UK. To book on the leaders training day email Jenny Black: jenny.black@wrg.org. uk or visit the WRG website. For any questions or further information contact the organiser Helen Gardner: helen.gardner@wrg.org.uk, or telephone her on 07989 42546.


Summer 2012 | NEWS | FREIGHT | RESTORATION

IWA Gives Evidence to Efra Select Committee

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waterways infrastructure than in the past, unless it is expressly permitted by the minister, who will remain as a ‘perpetual guardian’ of the assets. In effect, should CRT fail, the assets will remain in trust and the government will seek another trust to manage them. The committee also discussed the concerns that IWA had previously raised, over the risk that CRT may be pressured to downgrade waterways owing to financial concerns. It was noted that the Minister has recently made public statements about the Government’s wish to see the waterways grown and developed rather than downgraded under CRT, and that CRT objectives now enshrine navigation as a core responsibility. The committee had further detailed questions for BW and Defra which were dealt with through subsequent correspondence between them. It is anticipated that if there are no material concerns from the committee, the CRT could be launched by the end of June this year.

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was funded by British Waterways, Lancaster Canal Trust, English Heritage and the Heritage Lottery Fund. Designed by John Rennie and constructed by Alexander Stevens, the aqueduct consists of five stone arches supporting a 600ft (183m) stone trough. The aqueduct took three years to build and was completed in 1797.

Dave Bleasdale at Flickr.com CC-BY-SA

WA together with British Marine Federation officials were called to give evidence in front of the Efra Committee on Tuesday 13th March, as part of the committee’s scrutiny of the transfer of BW’s assets into the Canal & River Trust. The committee, chaired by Anne Macintosh MP, included former Waterways Minister Barry Gardiner MP, who had spent a considerable amount of time grilling BW executives beforehand, on what appeared to be mostly historic matters. IWA and BMF gave evidence together, and were asked general questions regarding the transfer order, and whether there were any general concerns over the transfer of BW assets to the CRT. More detailed questions followed about our views of the funding settlement, and whether we felt the network would be suitably protected under the management of the CRT. It was noted that the funding had considerably improved over what had initially been offered. IWA noted that the transfer order makes it more difficult for CRT to dispose of

he £2.4m restoration of a 200-year-old Lancashire aqueduct has been completed. Work to repair the Lune Aqueduct, which carries the Lancaster Canal over the River Lune at Lancaster, began in January 2011. The work has involved restoring the canal channel, removing graffiti, masonry repairs and improving public access. The work

Blue Peter Winner to Cruise to the Weaver Rally

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atherine Dewar, aged 10 from Chester, was chosen from 35,000 entries in a nationwide competition run by BBC children’s programme Blue Peter, to design the Queen’s official 2012 Diamond Jubilee emblem. The design will appear on everything from posters to commemorative tea cups. Katherine and her younger sister Eleanor, together with her parents, are joining guests at the Anderton Boat Lift on Saturday 23rd June to be part of the VIP Reception, before cruising to the Northwich River Weaver Festival which will be opened by HM Lord Lieutenant of Cheshire. The event is organised by IWA’s Chester & District Branch along with the River Weaver Society. Commemorative mugs featuring the design are being transported by working boat from the Etruria Festival (2nd – 3rd June), stopping at the Middlewich Folk & Boat Festival (15th – 17th June) and culminating at the River Weaver Festival in Northwich (22nd - 24th June). This trip has been titled the ‘Jubilee Run’ which is part of the Join-Us-In-June celebrations.

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waterways KEEPING OUR WATERWAYS ALIVE

Domestic Waterborne Freight – 2010

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PEEL PORTS STARTS £300 MILLION LIVERPOOL 2 TERMINAL

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eel Ports have started procurement for their new £300 million deepwater container terminal at the Port of Liverpool. When completed in 2015, the new Liverpool 2 will be suitable for the world’s largest vessels. The project forms part of Peel’s 20-year Mersey Ports Master Plan which includes the Manchester Ship Canal. Liverpool 2 will connect directly to a number of portcentric logistics hubs along the canal. Locating distribution centres at ports rather than

inland will save money and cut lead times, while reducing costs, carbon footprint and traffic congestion. A further advantage is that the hubs can hold surplus stock for sufficient periods of time to ensure product availability. Among retailers and third party logistics providers, interest in port-centric logistics has increased significantly in the last 10 years. Tesco already has a port-side import facility at Teesport, and along with other major retailers, the company is likely to be enthusiastic about

this new development in Liverpool. Containers could also be fed to hubs on the Weaver, especially if Eddie Stobart continues to develop the Port of Weston (formerly Weston Point Docks) from where there is good access to the M56. Gary Hodgson, Peel Ports Mersey Managing Director, said, “Where possible, we will source goods and services locally; however when we need to source goods over a longer distance, we will seek to transport construction materials by sea directly to the Port”.

elatedly the statistics for 2010 appeared in January this year but the figures are disappointing and reflect the overall lack of growth in the economy. At 2.94 million tonnes, internal (barge) traffic was the lowest since 2004 and in the decade since 2000 there had been a decline of 18 per cent. This traffic was dominated by liquid bulks (0.72 million tonnes) and dry bulks (1.36 million) and it was only on the Thames that Cory’s waste movement provided significant unitised traffic. The Thames/ Medway barge movements accounted for 43 per cent of the total and the North East network 33 per cent. One-port and coastal traffic also declined but there was some improvement in foreign trade penetrating inland waterways. It is all too easy to forget that our waterways have a significant role in international trade with over 31 million tonnes moving to or from inland ports by ships engaged in foreign trade.

Promoting Waterborne Freight

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he Inland Waterways Freight Group (IWFG) has long argued that in the transport market there is a sad lack of helpful information for potential customers on the water transport option. In our small way we tried to address this problem; Freight by Water (FBW) in its final days made a more professional contribution with its Freight by Water Data Base (2009) and the Commercial Boat Owners Association (CBOA) now provides useful arguments for and examples of waterborne freight in its excellent newsletter. With FBW now absorbed into the Freight Transport Association (FTA) there were possibilities either that the

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FBW would be wholly eclipsed or that the start it had made would be taken up and elaborated by the FTA. The FTA has now created a mode shiftcentre and argues that companies can utilise short-sea, coastal and inland shipping services to improve their supply chains. The FTA feels that with its “unparalleled” range of contacts in the water freight industry it is able to offer advice to potential users but with no disrespect to the listed providers of waterway services (Armac, Wynn, Trent Wharfage and Thompson River Transport), this is only to scratch the surface. Just one traffic, the hauling of aggregates from Besthorpe on

the Trent to Whitwood (Aire & Calder), has involved eight barges from five different companies, all involved in a variety of other trades. The FTA could therefore be providing a very short-sighted view of the possibilities and this must be remedied. The Freight Transport Association is promoting waterborne freight.


10

*

*Please quote IWA10

This voucher must be presented at the time of a qualifying purchase. Voucher must be redeemed in full, as no cash alternative will be offered. Vouchers cannot be used in conjunction with any other offer or discount, and cannot be redeemed against purchases of gas, diesel or gift vouchers. Voucher applies to full retails prices only. (Terms and conditions apply, see in-store for full details). Redemption Value 0.0001p: Only one voucher per transaction.

Selby Boat Centre currently offers Residential, short, and long term berths on our linear moorings on the Selby Canal just a short distance from Selby Lock ■ ■ ■ ■ ■ ■ ■

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waterways KEEPING OUR WATERWAYS ALIVE

Doug Beard - An Appreciation

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n 1985 IWA’s Chelmsford Branch issued a report entitled “Springfield Basin … and Beyond”, advocating restoration of the (then) derelict Springfield Lock and Basin and connection to the rivers through the town. This was circulated widely to councillors, MPs and the press. Among the many favourable reactions was a letter from a certain Douglas A. Beard congratulating us on a fine report. Several years passed, and although the various members of Chelmsford Council said they were in favour, nothing happened. In the meantime Doug and Molly Beard joined the Committee in 1991. Doug initially became membership secretary – a post left vacant after the death of Francis Booth. But it wasn’t long before he announced at a Committee meeting that we were going to restore the lock and basin. This was typical Doug! There was no “Wouldn’t it be good if ...”, and no consultation, just an announcement – a fait accompli. Jaws dropped and the general thought was “Where’s this man coming from, we can’t possibly afford that”. But Doug had the bit between his teeth. He sought and obtained permissions; he wrote hundreds of letters and obtained grants, some big and many small, until we could afford it. Doug didn’t know the mean-

ing of the word “tact”, but when he put his mind to it, he could talk anybody into anything! Somehow he discovered that the National Rivers Authority had some money left over in their budget, and persuaded them to dredge the basin. I don’t think we ever discovered exactly how much this cost them, but it was vastly more than the surplus they were trying to use up. Meanwhile Essex County Council were persuaded to restore the bridge by the lock, Chelmsford Borough Council gave us free use of the Wharf Road car park, and the Branch and Waterway Recovery Group restored the lock. Roy Chandler played a not insignificant part in these plans, but it was Doug that was the driving force. It is impossible to quantify the exact amount Doug raised, as much of it was given in kind. The cost of the dredging and the repairs to the bridge are examples. We were also given two dumpers, the use of two redundant electricity board sub stations, and a lot of materials. We were given 22 oak trees by Essex Wildlife Trust that we then felled to make the lock gates. The lock and basin were reopened on 29th May 1993 by the Vice Lord Lieutenant of Essex, accompanied by many local dignitaries. Doug didn’t stop there. Over the next few years he continued fund raising to pay for repairs and improvements to the Navigation in conjunction with the Chelmer & Blackwater Navigation Company. He also found time to become region chairman and serve on IWA’s National Council, as well as cruising the canal system aboard his new narrowboat Essex Girl.

In 2003, the Canal Company, which owned the Navigation, went into administration; Doug was appointed as IWA’s representative on the Creditors’ Committee, which supervised the Administrator. As no other navigation authority was willing to take over the navigation, Doug helped persuade IWA’s trustees to form a subsidiary company – Essex Waterways Ltd – to run the navigation, and in 2005 Doug became the first chairman of that company. Once EWL was up and running, he handed over the reins to Roy Chandler, as running a going concern didn’t present the sort of challenge he was interested in. Doug delighted in presenting an abrasive personality to the world, but those of us that knew him well could see past this, to the real person who was trying to do what he thought was right, and he wasn’t bothered in the slightest what others thought. During the last couple of years he suffered from increasing ill health. He suffered, and recovered, from throat cancer, he had a pacemaker fitted, but it was liver cancer that he was unable to beat and he died in hospital in late January. He will be very greatly missed, and all our sympathy goes to Molly. Doug’s funeral took place on Friday 10th February. The service was noticeable for the large number of people attending. There were various eulogies covering Doug’s many interests, after which we walked into the snow-covered woodland where he was laid to rest. John Gale

Pristine and splendid – Springfield Lock today.

Addressing the media at Springfield Lock.

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Essex Waterways Helmsman’s School Expert boathandling tuitition …the IWA way

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ssex Waterways Helmsman’s School is based at Paper Mill Lock, right at the heart of the beautiful and tranquil Chelmer & Blackwater Navigation, an historic waterway, engineered by the great John Rennie in the late eighteenth century, and now managed by Essex Waterways Limited, a wholly owned subsidiary of The Inland Waterways Association. Although formed initially to train employees and volunteers, and to encourage boaters moored on the waterway, the school’s fame quickly spread. Having accepted its first student in July 2011 it had, by the end of the year, attracted tens of participants, some from as far away as East Kent, North East Hampshire and South London. Hugh Turner, the school’s Chief Instructor, has worked on the waterway for over 20 years, and is an experienced commercial boatmaster. Despite this he had to undertake a number of courses to qualify as a Royal Yachting Association approved instructor. The School operates as an RYA training centre, so the certificates it awards are nationally and internationally recognised. The main course offered by the school is for the RYA’s Inland Waterways Helmsman’s Certificate (IWHC). This is a comprehensive

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one-day course that combines theory with plenty of practice in knots and ropework, the handling, manoeuvring and mooring of inland vessels, the effects of wind and currents, safety, rules of the road and lock operation. For those wishing to explore the inland waterways of mainland Europe the IWHC provides the practical element, and the school can undertake the necessary assessment for the Code Europeen des Voies de Navigation Interieure (CEVNI). The combination of the CEVNI assessment and the IWHC leads to the International Certificate for Operators of Pleasure Craft (ICC).

Ideal Training Location Paper Mill, close to Chelmsford in the centre of Essex, is an ideal training location providing appropriate experience in most aspects of inland navigation. The school has the use of a small passenger-carrying narrowboat as a training vessel, and there are comfortable classroom facilities, together with ample parking and an excellent lock-side café. It is easily reached by road, being just a couple of miles from the A12, and a similar distance from a mainline railway station where students can be met if required. A comprehensive course handbook is supplied to every student. The clear diagrams

Essex Waterways Navigation Manager Colin Edmond has announced that he plans to retire later in 2012, and so Essex Waterways will be recruiting a successor later in the year. If you think you might be interested in the role, an applicants pack will be available from Christine Walsh at Head Office (Christine.walsh@ waterways.org.uk)


Essex Waterways

LEFT: Getting underway. BELOW LEFT: Turning skills explained.

MORE INFO: Anyone who is interested in taking the RYA Inland Helmsman’s Certificate course with the Essex Waterways Inland Helmsman’s School is invited to contact the Chief Instructor, Hugh Turner, by writing to EWHC, Paper Mill Lock, Little Baddow, Essex CM3 4BS; emailing hugh. turner@waterways.org.uk; or telephoning 07910 558465.

A safe place to wind.

Mooring up.

Paper Mill Lock.

Time for quiet reflection.

provide guidance for students who don’t master every knot and manoeuvre on the day. Many participants have arrived in apprehension, but have finished the day with happy confidence having realised that they are not expected to perfect their skills in one day. Explanation, encouragement and practice can get them pretty close though! Each course is conducted in a flexible and friendly manner, and while certain aspects cannot be missed, the emphasis can be adapted to accord with the strengths and weaknesses of the group. The RYA allows a maximum of three students to each instructor, and we have found this to be the ideal number as everyone learns from each other. We can train just one or two people

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at a time, but three seems to result in the perfect dynamic. Where students want to gain confidence in handling their own boat we can use that as the training vessel, subject to a few sensible safety considerations. At the end of each course we invite the participants to let us know what they thought of it, and whether it matched their expectations. The short questionnaires can be anonymous and have space for additional comments. Almost every student so far has been happy to put their name to their comments, and it has been heart-warming to read that the course almost always exceeds expectations and is rewarded with gratitude and praise. The current level of enquires suggests 2012 will be another busy season.

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Getting to know the ropes — ropework skills demonstrated.

IWA waterways - Summer 2012 |

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A Link between the Thames and the Slough Arm of the Grand Union has long been mooted. It would be a huge boost to the waterway network of the south east, as Mike Timms explains…

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oaters on the Thames battling their way against an incoming tide towards the Grand Union Canal at Brentford must have often wondered why there is not an easier route between the river and the canal network. After all, the Slough Arm of the Grand Union runs less than two miles from the Thames at its nearest point. That a suitable connection does not exist is not for the want of previous efforts to provide one; as early as 1802 a “Western Union Canal” from Cowley on the GU main line to Maidenhead or Marlow was proposed and a similar scheme in 1819 would have included a branch to Windsor. These proposals were designed to enable commercial traffic to avoid certain sections of the Thames, then notoriously poorly maintained in places. Fast forward now to the mid-1960s, when the long established leisure use of the river was beginning to be matched by similar activity on the canals. Newly moved to South Bucks, your writer’s interest in a Slough Arm-Thames link was aroused by attendance at a meeting in Slough around 1968, addressed by the then Viscount St Davids and Mr Neville New. The noble lord had identified a strip of undeveloped land to the east of Slough town centre running from the canal roughly between Middlegreen Road and Uxbridge Road bridges to Black Potts Bridge, where the Staines to Windsor railway line crosses the Thames and he and Mr New were hoping to generate support for a link between the two waterways along this line.

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The New Canal At around this time, Slough Borough Council was seeking to construct a Ring Road to connect the London Road (A4) to Slough Trading Estate, which would have involved widening of residential roads to take increased traffic and filling in of the last mile and a quarter of the Slough arm. This generated intense local opposition and a group of six canal enthusiasts, including Neville New and your writer, joined together under the title Slough Canal Group to provide waterways input, as well as campaigning for the Link. In the event, the road scheme was defeated, due largely to the inspired leadership of a local journalist, one Stanley Richardson, whose home lay on one of the streets concerned and who subsequently became editor of the Slough Observer newspaper. Contact with Mr Richardson resulted in ongoing favourable publicity for the Slough Arm and the Link over a lengthy period. Promoting the cause of the Link in those early days had its lighter moments, often associated with the personalities involved. When working out


The New Canal

Lovestruck at flickr.com CC-BY-SA

Quiet waters on the Slough Arm.

Entrance to the Slough Arm from the Grand Union.

Pete Reed at flickr.com CC-BY-SA

The Thames at Eton.

the details of Lord St Davids proposals, Neville New - a waterways visionary in the classic IWA style (among other things, he was drawing up plans for reinstating the Basingstoke Canal west of Greywell Tunnel when the main part of the Basingstoke was still unrestored) - consulted the representative of one of the landowners along the route, namely the Mother Superior at St Bernard’s Convent in London Road, Slough. One can only guess at the thoughts of this good lady on being confronted by a gentleman enquiring about cutting a canal across her employer’s land. In an attempt to counter opposition to the Ring Road scheme, Slough Council’s engineering department produced a drawing purporting to show a new terminal basin for the Slough Arm at Bloom Park (where the annual Slough Canal

Festival is now held) with a flight of locks leading down to enable a link to the Thames to pass under the adjacent railway line. The public relations value of this exercise, clearly targeted at the waterways fraternity, was diminished by the fact that the locks were shown facing the wrong way, pointing downhill rather than up. Fast forward again to the mid-1990s, when British Waterways began to show an interest, producing a feasibility study and a geotechnical desk study for a link broadly along the St Davids/New route, but involving tunnelling under areas which had since been built up. This project, it is understood, was carried out in the hope of obtaining millennium funding, which regrettably was not forthcoming. The work undertaken, however, resulted in the Link gaining “official” status, by appearing in no less than four glossy reports, two by the Inland Waterways Advisory Council (IWAC) (2001 and 2006), one by the Association of Inland Navigation Authorities (2001) and one by British Waterways itself (2004). What is the position now? The formation in 2003 of the Friends of Slough Canal to encourage the use and adequate maintenance of the Slough Arm has provided a base for promoting the link as a longer-term concept. The two principal statutory bodies concerned, British Waterways (shortly to become the Canal & River Trust) and Slough Borough Council, both previously either hostile or indifferent, now support the idea of a connection between the two waterways, albeit with substantial caveats in each case. Slough Council, in its Core Strategy 2026 for planning purposes, states of the Link: “The Council would support this in principle, provided it is technically feasible, economically viable and environmentally sustainable”. Circumstances have become sufficiently favourable for one of the current councillors to attempt in part to draw up a notional alignment; against this must be set the fact that ongoing urbanisation of the area around Slough continues to reduce the route options available. A certain amount of documentation is available to anyone willing to take up the baton of promoting the link. That said, local enquiries and investigations indicate that finding a suitable person and assembling a team with sufficient expertise and status solely from Slough and the surrounding district is likely to prove impossible. The two IWAC reports mentioned above classify the strategic significance of the link as “national” (as against “regional” and “local”). Progressing it therefore needs to be approached at national level. The Canal & River Trust, or one of its officers, might like to consider taking this on, as an indication of seriousness of purpose. And a suitable name for the link, when it is built? The New Canal, of course, in honour of the man who did much of the pioneering work!

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Negotiating a lift bridge on the Brecon & Abergavenny Canal.


Welsh l Waters From the industrial valleys of the south, to the spectacular mountains of the north, the waterways of Wales have so much to offer. Join us for a tour…

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ention the waterways of Wales and most people’s thoughts turn immediately to the Llangollen Canal. With its iconic aqueducts at Pontcysyllte and Chirk, dramatic mountain scenery and enthralling climax at the world famous Eisteddford town, this is Britain’s most popular holiday waterway - and deservedly so. But Wales has so much more to offer the waterway enthusiast, including the picturesque Montgomery Canal, which is slowly being restored between its junction with the Llangollen at Frankton to Newtown, Powys - a distance of 35 miles. The greatest concentration of canals is to be found in the south of the Principality. They range from the fully-navigable Brecon & Abergavenny Canal, spectacularly located within the Brecon Beacons National Park, to the Monmouthshire, Neath & Tennant and Swansea canals, all of which are undergoing restoration with the active support of IWA and Waterway Recovery Group. It is here in the south that we begin our tour, looking at restoration projects currently underway, present day attractions and boat trips, and future prospects.

CANALS OF SOUTH WALES The canals in South Wales were built to bring heavy goods down the valleys to the ports along the coast, notably Swansea, Neath (Briton Ferry), Cardiff and Newport. With the decline of the heavy industry and the coming of the railways they fell into disuse with the result that some have almost completely disappeared especially where the valley was so narrow that their line was the only suitable route. There are several active canal societies dedicated to maintaining and restoring their piece of canal. The South Wales branch of IWA acts as a forum where the groups may come together and gives support where it is able. Very little remains of the canals west of Swansea; a restored harbour and short length of the Kymers Canal at Kidwelly and some stonework of the Penclawdd Canal.

The Ponty Paddle on the Swansea Canal.

The Swansea Canal The Swansea Canal, completed in July 1798, descended 375ft through 36 locks in a distance of just over 16 miles. It had several tramroads and small canals feeding it, as was typical in South Wales. Now only three stretches totalling five miles remain in water, owned by BW as a remaindered waterway and giving BW an income from supplying water to local industry. The Swansea Canal Society is active in maintaining these lengths with regular cleanups and has just started a project exploring the viability of restoring a short length through an old council yard and its adjacent lock. IWA through, its restoration fund, has provided ‘seedcorn’ money for this project. IWA South Wales Branch actively participates in the Ponty Paddle, an event for canoes, held for the first time last year and now to be a regular August event. Visit www.swanseacanalsociety.com. Also in the Swansea valley part of the underground Smith’s Canal, built to supply water and later coal to the Whiterock Copperworks, has been located and cleared. A stroll beside the Swansea Canal.

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The Neath & Tennant Canals The Neath Canal has been the focus of much regeneration. Owned by the Neath Canal Company, this canal also generates income from the sale of its water to local industry as does the Tennant Canal, which is still owned by the Tennant family. The Neath & Tennant Canals Trust is another very active canal society. Visit www.neath-tennant-canals.org.uk/ Very little remains of the Glamorganshire Canal except for the nature reserve at Whitchurch, adjacent to the recently restored Melingriffith Wheel, and the stretch at Pontypridd which is the focus of restoration, most of the rest being buried under the rebuilt A470. The Pontypridd Canal Conservation Group is working on the restoration of the canal alongside the site of the former Brown Lenox chain works from which chain is carried by canal to Cardiff Docks and exported all over the world. The site is now being redeveloped by Sainsbury’s. IWA’s Restoration Committee provided a grant for surveying and other initial work. The Glamorganshire Weighing Machine at Stoke Bruerne was also made here by Brown Lenox. Visit www.pontypriddcanalconservation.com.

Trip boat on the Neath & Tennant Canals.

ABOVE: Unrestored lock at Pontypridd on the Glamorganshire Canal. LEFT: Artist’s impression of restored locks at Pontypridd.

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Welsh Waters Neath Canal – Restoration Update Although the canal ceased operating as an industrial transport system in 1920, the section of canal particularly between Abergarwed and Briton Ferry continued to be maintained to a reasonable standard to provide an important water supply to the various heavy industries located along its lower route. This core activity ensured the canal waterway was protected for leisure use for future generations, whilst stimulating the economy. Aware of the social and environmental benefits the canal provides to the community, the committee has actively encouraged all schemes to promote its use. ● 1990: Restoration of 6km of canal above Resolven ● 1999-2001: £600,000 invested in improving the canal and towpath between Tonna and Briton Ferry ● 1993-4: Contingency plans were implemented saving 5km of canal from heavy pollution due to a discharge of mine water but 7km between Abergarwed and Tonna Lock were completely poisoned ● 2001: Using Welsh Office funding, a new prototype chemical treatment plant was designed and installed at a cost of £1.5 million to accept all the polluted water. This equipment now prevents any polluted water entering the canal. ● 2005-2007: £2.6 million funding was secured to restore the polluted section of the canal between Abergarwed and Tonna. It was completed on schedule and within budget in October 2005 and the project won a BURA Waterways Renaissance Award in 2007

for the restoration of the four locks between Tonna and Cyd Terrace and the replacement of the old aqueduct at Ynysbwllog which had been partly demolished by floodwater The design for the aqueduct included the safest and most cost effective form of construction to enhance the physical environment and provide maximum benefits to the operation of the canal and the community. The design considered the environmental integrity from the outset in close partnership with the Environment Agency, including a clear span across the River Neath to improve flood capacity of the river and to provide long term benefits for the upstream land owners. The structure has been designed to take the full lateral force resulting from floodwater overtopping the side of the aqueduct. The above projects have returned 9km of canal to its former beauty, enabling it to continue to act as a linear nature reserve, whilst providing excellent recreation and sporting facilities for the general public; plus securing an ongoing clean industrial water supply to the new prestigious Baglan Energy Park complex. Waterway Recovery Group has been involved with many of these improvements, especially the work above Resolven in the early days. IWA made a financial contribution to the restoration of the listed stone-arched canal bridge which provided the main entrance to last years Welsh Waterways Festival & National Trailboat Rally.

In addition, a further £2.2 million of funding was secured

Ynysarwed Bridge on the Neath Canal…before restorati on.

The completed bridge, restored thanks to an IWA grant.

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Monmouthshire Canal The Welsh waterways popularly known today as the ‘Mon & Brec’, are a combination of the already navigable parts of the Monmouthshire Canal and the entire Brecon & Abergavenny Canal. The latter flows from Brecon in the north through the unbelievably beautiful scenery of the Brecon Beacons, before currently terminating abruptly at Five Locks Basin, Cwmbran (see below). This is the start of the long, heavily locked fall of the Monmouthshire Canal down the Usk valley. The intention is to restore the canal through to a proposed new connection with the River Usk near the M4 motorway at Newport. Despite part of the canal in Cwmbran being lost beneath a road, and the waterway similarly compromised in Newport, enthusiasm for restoration of this sometimes spectacular waterway thrives, and progress has been made all along the route. Starting with Gwastad Lock in the 1970s, several locks have been restored, and three miles of the waterway from Newport to Pentre Lane were opened to navigation in 2010. The Crumlin Arm is also undergoing restoration, greatly boosted by WRG Canal Camps. The premier attraction here is the impressive Cefn Flight, aka Fourteen Locks, which raises the canal by 168ft in just over half a mile and contains a series of embanked ponds, pounds and elaborate sluices and weirs. At the top is a much acclaimed visitor centre featuring an exhibition about the canal. The Trust is working in partnership with Newport Council on the phased restoration of locks 17–20 of the Fourteen Locks, funded under the Education through Restoration project, and a funding strategy is being considered to restore the remainder of the flight. Working in partnership, Torfaen Council, WRG and the Monmouthshire, Brecon & Abergavenny Canals Trust restoration team, which includes a number of community

unemployed learning heritage skills, has begun a project to restore the Ty-Coch flight of nine locks at Cwmbran. Work is nearing completion on Drapers Lock, and the partnership has recently submitted an application for Heritage Lottery Funding to restore the other eight locks. Visit www.mon-brec-canal-trust.org.uk.

TOP: Enjoying a walk along the Crumlin Arm of the Monmouthshire Canal. ABOVE: Risca, Crumlin Arm. LEFT: Pontywaun, Crumlin Arm. BELOW: Relaxation - Brecon & Abergavenny style.

If the Brecon & Abergavenny were connected to the main system, it would undoubtedly rival the Llangollen as the most popular canal in the country, such is the beauty of its surroundings. However, its isolated nature saves it from the crowds which flock to that famous Welsh waterway further north and gives it the status of an exclusive club. There could never be a better time to visit this extraordinary canal than in this, its 200th anniversary year.

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ROBIN SMITHETT

Brecon & Abergavenny Canal


The stunning beauty of the Brecon & Abergavenny Canal near Llanover.

ROBIN SMITHETT

Almost entirely ensconced within the Brecon Beacons National Park, the canal runs from Brecon to Pontnewydd near Cwmbran, and offers the most gorgeous views imaginable of the lofty peaks of the Beacons and down into the Usk Valley. There are numerous highlights: Brecon, with its restored basin and canalside theatre; Talybont, a mini-resort for adventure seekers where boaters halt traffic on the minor road crossing the canal in order to raise the electric lift bridge; the fabulously sited lock flight at Llangynidr; and the wonderful wooded section at Llanfoist, where the trees occasionally thin out to reveal tantalising glimpses of the Sugar Loaf and the other green hills that encircle Abergavenny. Only the most sedentary of visitors can resist the lure of the mountains and a pair of walking boots should be regarded as essential equipment for a trip along this spectacular waterway.

Entry to the ‘Monty’ at Frankton Junction.

MID WALES Montgomery Canal The Montgomery Canal ran for 35 miles from Frankton Junction on the Llangollen Canal to Newtown in mid Wales and was abandoned in 1936, following a breach near Frankton. Under the auspices of the Shropshire Union Canal Society, restoration work has been underway for over 40 years. Volunteers have restored structures including locks at Frankton, Aston, Carreghofa, Burgeddin, Brynderwen and Newhouse. An isolated 11-mile section from Berriew to Ardleen is open to navigation, centred on Welshpool with its small canal centre and summer trip boat, although lack of traffic means that weed makes most of the length more or less impassable for boats. A horse-drawn hotel boat operation had to withdraw because of the weed growth. Meanwhile, from the Llangollen Canal at Frankton Junction, boats can cruise a sevenmile section to Gronwen Wharf at Redwith. Work, much of it being carried out by WRG, is currently concentrating immediately south of Redwith, where over 100 yards of channel has been shaped, some 15 yards lined, and towpath improvement effected. The channel shaping and lining will continue in 2012. The next major task is to secure funding – and permissions – to join the two navigable sections, making Welshpool again accessible from the national network. This work includes building new nature reserves and reconstructing several blocked road crossings.

A rally of boats at Welshpool, 1981.

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Comparatively few engineering problems stand in the way of complete restoration of this beautiful waterway – so why is it taking so long? The canal is designated as a Site of Special Scientific Interest for much of its length, being particularly important for its range of rare aquatic plants. Consequently, restoration plans have had to include a wealth of measures to safeguard the survival of these life-forms. Finally, on the southernmost section of the canal, down towards its historic terminus at Newtown, SUCS has rebuilt several locks, but more road crossings stand in the way of navigation. For the foreseeable future, then, this beautiful section has to be enjoyed on foot – but it’s a truly delightful walk. Visit www.shropshireunion.org.uk and www.montgomerycanalme.co.uk.

Further information

ABOVE: WRG volunteers toiling away on the Montgomery Canal. BELOW LEFT: Day boat on the Llangollen Canal.

All the Welsh restoration projects detailed in these pages welcome volunteers with open arms. For further information visit the relevant trust or society. Alternatively, contact: IWA South Wales Branch: Margaret Gwalter 01792 851271, e-mail: southwales@waterways. org.uk. IWA Shrewsbury District & North Wales: Dawn Aylwin 01691 830403, e-mail: shrewsandwales@ waterways.org.uk.

BELOW RIGHT: Coming in to moor at Trevor, Llangollen Canal.

ROBIN SMITHETT

ROBIN SMITHETT

NORTH WALES

Llangollen Canal The overwhelming popularity of the Llangollen Canal never seems to waver - and why should it, for this is a truly magnificent canal, from its quiet beginnings in the dairylands of Cheshire through to its fantastic climax in the dramatic mountains of North Wales. But there is a price to pay for all this scenic grandeur, as the Llangollen can be exceptionally busy in the peak summer months - an out of season visit often brings greater rewards. Leaving the Shropshire Union Canal at Hurleston Junction, the waterway slips quietly through a timeless landscape of black and white cows and black and white houses. The pretty villages of Wrenbury and Marbury serve to enhance the rural idyll. By contrast, Grindley Brook locks are often the scene of frenzied activity in high season - fortunately the lock keeper is normally on hand to offer expert guidance to inexperienced boat crews. The mountains of Wales, initially just grey/blue smudges on the western horizon, are coming ever closer now, but first there is Shropshire’s very own Lake District to enjoy: a series of

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For details of Waterway Recovery Group Canal Camps in Wales telephone 01494 783453, or visit www.wrg.org.uk.

delightful meres grouped around the handsome town of Ellesmere. Passing Frankton Junction, where the Montgomery Canal heads off towards Newtown, you ascend the canal’s final two locks at New Marton. Then there are two splendid aqueducts to negotiate. First there’s Chirk, spectacular enough in its own right, followed by fabulous Pontcysyllte (featured on our front cover), where the canal crosses the River Dee on an incredible structure 1,000 feet long, 127ft tall at its deepest point and comprising an iron trough supported by 18 stone pillars. Celebrating its 200th birthday in 2005, Pontcysyllte is undoubtedly the single most iconic structure on the British canal network and was recently granted UNESCO World Heritage status. And then you’re on the last lap into lovely Llangollen, a town made famous by its annual Eisteddfod. You can moor in the special mooring basin whist you explore all the sights. Strongly recommended is a horse-drawn boat trip along the final two-mile section up to Horseshoe Falls, and there’s a steam railway too.


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MEET THE

Trustees

CRT trustee Lynne Berry talks about her waterway background, IWA and the new Trust. Waterways, she says, have a great heritage and a bright future… IWA’s continuing role

I’ve had the privilege of meeting many IWA members and have been really impressed by the commitment you’ve shown to the process of transferring the waterways to the Canal & River Trust. It’s not often you get a chance to make a huge difference to something you care about or to influence major decisions but we all have that chance now! In fact, IWA members have played an important part in protecting the canals, turning them into a real haven for people and wildlife and creating new opportunities for people who own or hire boats to have a fantastic time on the water. You fought hard to save the waterways when they were under threat and I’ve been intrigued by the stories of the past, conscious of the pride of those who have campaigned to bring them back to life. We are asking IWA members to continue to help safeguard the future of the waterways and I’m delighted that people are so enthusiastically behind the Trust. I’m excited to hear so much about people’s ambitions for the future. I’ve seen at first hand the results of skilled volunteers who have used their practical skills to restore our heritage. Thanks to them new generations of visitors can be impressed by the engineering skills of the Industrial Revolution and can admire the locks and gates, the detail of the paddles and the beauty of the old work places and buildings.

How far have we got? As the Parliamentary hearings enter their final phases, the launch of the Canal & River Trust is getting ever nearer and we are all planning for the future. We’ve come a long way since the first Transition Trustees were recruited by Defra in May 2011. The dream of creating a charity to safeguard and develop the waterways, to create community ownership, is slowly coming true. We’ve still got some way to go but we have our Council, and I and the other Trustees were honoured to be ratified by it at its first meeting. We’ve set up the regional Partnerships, we’re a registered Charity and we’re thrilled to have the Prince of Wales as our Patron. We have to wait for the transfer of the assets – the 2,000 miles of canals and rivers (200 reopened in the last decade alone),

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“We are asking IWA members to continue to help safeguard the future of the waterways and I’m delighted that people are so enthusiastically behind the Trust” the thousand conservation sites, the 65 SSSIs, the nearly 66 megalitres of water, the five adjacent World Heritage sites and nine historic battlefields, and so on. That will fall into place once the transfer has taken place and we’ll be off to a great start when we launch this summer.

Confidence in the future The Trust will start its life with a tough but fair settlement from Government. We’ve got to wait for the next Government Spending Round (in 2015) before the new money really kicks in and we’ve got to wait for the fundraising to show a return on the investment before we can reap the rewards. I have every confidence both things will happen but we’re a little way off them yet. What we can do - and in all sorts of ways this is the most important thing – is to start getting more people involved. I want them to feel, like IWA members do, that the canals and rivers are part of their communities, part of the pride they feel in their heritage, a source of environmentally sound holidays and cruising, a safe place for wildlife and an amazing place to get fit. That’s our real challenge – and it’s vital that we turn the dream of these being everyone’s waterways into a reality.

Why did I get involved? I sometimes get asked why I got involved with this amazing venture. Well, it’s partly because it’s such an exciting challenge – turning one of our most important public assets into a treasured charity, bringing benefits to the communities and


Robin Smithett

The Interview Tardebigge Locks on the Worcester & Bimingham Canal – an inspiration to Lynne during her schooldays.

“We’ve come a long way since the first Transition Trustees were recruited by Defra in May 2011” increasing the numbers of people who love them. We’ll be aiming to develop the canals and rivers for boats of all sorts as well as for anglers, runners and walkers, increasing visitors to the amazing heritage and doing something positive about the environment. It’s also because I think I have some of the skills the Trust needs, in engaging volunteers and making sure they feel their time is valued and in fundraising. I’ve spent my career in both government and the voluntary sector running large national organisations, and have developed policy and campaigned to increase local participation and community engagement. It’s also because I’ve always been near to water and I love it. I lived as a child near the Pontcysyllte Aqueduct and the Dee in North Wales. We moved because of my father’s work near to Birmingham and I’ve witnessed the complete revival of the city and its canals. I went to school not far from the Tardebigge Flight and had a history teacher who took us to see them, thrilling us with stories about Brunel, Telford and Brindley, and how the pots of Wedgwood and the needles of Redditch would not have got to market but for the genius of the industrial architects and engineers. This all has made me passionate about our heritage and I want to make it relevant to the future. As a student I lived by the river in Cambridge and the docks in Cardiff and since I arrived in London in the mid-70s I’ve worked and lived near the Regent’s Canal. For the last ten years

“We know we need to reach out to more young people, more people with disabilities, more women, more people from minority ethnic communities”

my husband and I have also had a little wooden cabin on the side of the Trent near where his parents lived, where he’d gone finishing as a lad. At first we could only get there using a small boat! About five years ago we fell in love with a ‘50s wooden river cruiser which we’ve nearly finished doing up and which already brings enormous joy as we set off along the river. To have the chance to increase the numbers of people who enjoy messing around on the rivers and canals – what could be a better thing to be involved in?

Why you should get involved And you can be involved too. IWA will continue to be a key stakeholder and partner when the Trust gets going. We need your knowledge and expertise, advice and ideas. As IWA always says it’s not just a boating organisation – it’s for everyone who wants to develop the waterways, to protect the environment, to preserve our heritage and to introduce canals and rivers to others so they can love and enjoy them too. The new Canal & River Trust shares IWA’s dream of waterways for everyone. That’s the real ambition I have for the new Trust. There are many who have been passionately involved for a long time but we need more people to feel that the canals and rivers are for them. I’m conscious that the people who use the towpaths, who boat, fish and canoe, who enjoy the history and want to use their skills to improve the canals, are amazingly varied. The Canal & River Trust’s new Partnerships and the new Council will give a voice to all these groups and will find new ways of balancing their interests. We know we need to reach out to more young people, more people with disabilities, more women, more people from minority ethnic communities and empower them to feel that they aren’t just visitors (welcome as visitors are) but that they can aspire to key positions of influence. That’s our remaining challenge and one I know, with your passion to get people involved, we’ll be able to do something about.

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THE NEXT GENERATION We look at attempts to attract young people to the world of the waterways

Art is Rubbish at IWA’s Northwich Festival

A

Following lots of testing with children and their teachers, discussion with partners and a children’s marketing agency, the new Canal & River Trust is to have a new name for Wild Over Waterways (WOW). The new name is Explorers – which can then be supplemented by the inclusion of Canal & River, Waterway or Glandwr (Welsh for Waterside).

activity - it fits with the Trust’s focus on promoting a national, but local waterway network with free volunteer-led sessions. • Explorers strengthens and enhances the main Canal & River Trust’s brand. • And finally it does what it says on the tin - no more explaining the name or web address.

The name was selected because: • Explorers came out very strongly when tested with children; they recognise the word and feel comfortable with it. • It’s an active word which inspires investigation and

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s part of IWA Chester & District Branch’s community involvement with Northwich, we are running the “Art is Rubbish” project with local schools. Currently six schools have signed up and are working towards our presentation day in Northwich on 14th June when the Mayor will attend and present the schools with prizes – donated by IWA and local organisations. British Waterways have kindly donated a day out at Anderton with a boat trip included and the local Council have also made a grant of £100 so everyone will receive a good prize to take back to their school. Other local companies have also been approached and we are awaiting responses. The projects will then be displayed on the River Weaver festival site in Northwich during the weekend of 23rd-24th June, enabling all the parents to come and see what the children have been doing with their “recycling” project. Last year, in Burton upon Trent, some great pieces of art work were produced and we are looking forward to a similar standard this year.


The Next Generation New WOW volunteers at Stoke Bruerne Museum

Kids go free at Beale Park

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C

olunteer Lawrence Owen has been busy making model canal bridges from blocks of wood for children to build and learn about arches. These were tested, with help from staff at Stoke Bruerne Canal Museum, during a recent visit to a school in Milton Keynes as part of the celebrations for National Science Week. New WOW education volunteers are now being trained

to support the existing volunteers at the museum so that the education programme for schools can be extended. Building arches after a visit to Blisworth Tunnel will certainly form a part of the programme.

hildren visiting this year’s Beale Park Boat Show on the Thames (8th-10th June) will be admitted free when accompanied by a full paying adult, in celebration of The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee. Gillie Jackson, Show Organiser, said “I am absolutely delighted that we are able to commemorate this happy occasion in such a beneficial way, as we hope that it will encourage families to visit the show, and enable them to explore the world of boating and discover the many waterborne activities available to them.”

WOW programme takes off in Devizes

S

chools are now taking advantage of the new programme of education activities run by a group of WOW volunteers at the Canal Museum at Devizes Wharf. With support from Elaine Stanley, education volunteer co-ordinator, the group has developed a range of activities suitable for children

aged 5 to 11. There is an interactive workshop where the children build a model of the canal, examine some of the cargoes that were carried and dress up in costume. The volunteers also lead a guided trail around the museum and a walk along the towpath to look at some of the old wharf buildings and how a lock works. Schools also have the opportunity to book a boat trip run by the Kennet & Avon Canal Trust. Four schools have visited the museum so far and several more schools have booked for the summer term.

Foxton Locks Success

B

ritish Waterways began recruiting WOW volunteers at Foxton Locks in Spring 2011. Their role was to out-reach to schools, groups and families, encouraging more visits, learning and excitement about our waterways. Between the end of June and December last year, Foxton Locks WOW Volunteers led 11 school visits; many of these visits were with two or three classes at a time. They supported the Foxton Canal Museum at events; and running children’s activities such as making model boats, canal painting, and ‘build a canal’ demonstrations. The team ran a number of self-promoted family activities, such as the Big Draw art event and Winter Family Walk – cold but fun! It hasn’t stopped there; the team has just produced a full list of activities taking place at Foxton Locks in 2012, some of which link to the Olympic Torch and launch of CRT. These activities will run alongside the school visits, including a planned History Schools Week in June, where they will be joined by the Heritage Working Boat Volunteers.

Young Working Boaters Society

W

ith the new changes in waterways management (see opposite) it seemed appropriate for the Young Working Boaters Society to rethink it’s structure and what the group is about. Our aims are remaining the same, but over the next few weeks and months we are reforming the group and making a lot of positive changes. Please bear with us whilst we try and do this as quickly and efficiently as possible. To begin with our membership scheme is changing: You no longer have to be between the ages of 16-35 to become a member, but can join the society as an associate member if you are above 35, or a junior member if you are below 16. If you’re interested in becoming a member then get in touch with the chairperson Rebekah and you will be sent a membership form explaining which membership level is best suited to you. A new website is currently under construction and will hopefully be available wthin the next month or so. YWBS are on the lookout for some trustees of our own; these will help us to run the society and as a whole will provide a wealth of experience and knowledge in running a group such as ourselves. You do not necessarily need to be a boater to become a trustee, so once again if you’re interested then please get in touch. We look forward to exciting times ahead for the society. Contact: Rebekah Fuller on 07541 421 886, e-mail rebekahjanefuller@hotmail.com or visit www.ywbs.co.uk.

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GoingDown

the dr ains

F

or those looking for something different why not try going down the Drains? As the name implies this 56-mile network of waterways was cut to drain the fenland to the north west of the market town and port of Boston. Early records show that as early as 1568 the Maud Foster Drain, named after the land owner through which it passed, was built to drain the fens to the north of the town. Later in 1631 it was enlarged to provide “a great navigable stream three miles long” that discharged through a sluice and lock into the Tidal Haven. Coastal sailing craft entered the town via this route and later passenger “Packet Boats” journeyed to Lincoln and London. Of the seven locks built into the system, only two are presently usable - Anton’s Gowt and Cow Bridge. Maud Foster and Hobhole locks were turned into sluices in the 1940s, a lock at Lade Bank was demolished to build a pumping station and another, East Fen, connecting the Hob Hole to Cow Bridge Drain, was in-filled as a golf tee. Hagnaby Lock survives but is gateless. Anton’s Gowt Lock, some three miles east of Boston is, maintained by the River Witham navigation authority, BW (C&RT), and is the entrance to the system and boater operated. It can accommodate craft up to 72ft long by 18ft wide. There are no boater facilities, mooring is “bankside” and no extra licences are required. At the entrance, pontoon landings have been installed and new tail gates have been fitted to the lock. The nearby Lincolnshire Waterways Partnership “Water Rail Way” long distance path between Lincoln and Boston provides easy access for cyclists into town.

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Boston Stump.

Two authorities control the Navigable Drains. The Witham Fourth I.D.B. (telephone 01502 310099) extend from Anton`s Gowt to Cow Bridge Lock. Their main function is land drainage but from May to September inclusive the water is maintained at a higher level for irrigation and leisure purposes. It is advisable to let them know, during office hours, of your presence, should they have to alter water levels that could affect navigation.. It is also advisable to check the water levels before leaving Anton’s Gowt Lock on the depth board on the tail wing wall, best seen from the road in front of the Malcolm Arms pub. On the map the bridge clearance heights shown are at 0 on the board and allowances should be made for other readings. No height shown on the map indicates an excess of 6ft clearance. For quiet, in town moorings, turn right along the Frith Bank Drain to Cow Bridge Lock, using the mooring rings under the road bridge climb the bank to cross the road and set the lock. The mitre gates have no balance beams, due to their proximity to the private bridge, but use the chains to open them and a long shaft to close them. The dimensions of this lock are 71ft x 10ft 9in and, as with a number of other fenland locks, has a flat timber bottom with the stone sided chamber sat on it.

Rutty at flickr com CC-BY-SA

IWA Lincolnshire Branch’s Dave Carnell recommends the Witham Navigable Drains for a quiet cruise...


Facilities by Boston Lock.

FENLAND CLARIFICATION

presently filled in and used by the golf club as a tee. It is understood the chamber is in good condition, its restoration would add a further 13 miles to this unique waterways system. For those who collect mementos of their voyages the Lincolnshire Branch produce a stainless steel plaque 8cm square with a black etched Maud Foster windmill depicted on it, which with a picture of their boat on the system and a donation of £10, can be obtained from Lincs IWA, Conifer Cottage, Northend, Goxhill, Barrow upon Humber, North Lincolnshire DN19 7JX.

Thank you to readers who e-mailed and telephoned to put the record straight.

Fenland Waterways Link Water levels in the Drains are lower than those in the Maud Foster that takes you into Boston and the `Packet Boat` mooring steps. Having used a Water Mate key to unlock the guillotine winding gear take a firm grip on the winding handle before releasing the clutch bar to prevent any kick back. On leaving the lock you are in EA controlled waters which they classify as Main River. Whilst they acknowledge a right of navigation they do not accept they are the navigation authority although their sign on the “Packet Boat Steps” indicate it is their official mooring. Travelling along the Maud Foster you will pass under two cast iron bridges made by the Butterley Ironworks in 1811.

BELOW: Looking along the tidal Witham to Grand Sluice Lock, Boston.

Historic Boston

Robin Smithett

Rutty at flickr.com CC-BY-SA

We have been taken to task for a couple of inaccuracies in our ‘The Magic of Fenland’ feature in the previous issue of Waterways. There are no public moorings, as suggested, in Brayford Pool, Lincoln, the only such facilities provided by British Waterways being at their Fossdyke Depot. The footpath between Lincoln and Torksey in fact finishes at Saxilby, some 2½ miles short of the Fossdyke Navigation’s junction with the Trent. We also failed to make mention of the navigable section of the River Slea within the article.

At the mooring a watermate key will unlock the gate at the head of the steps giving access to the centre of Boston. This historic town has much to offer the tourist not least the Parish Church, St. Botolphs (the Stump) with its lantern tower standing 272ft high, and the 1390s Guild Hall Museum with exhibits including the Pilgrim Fathers being tried and imprisoned there in 1607. Along side the moorings is the Maud Foster working windmill that offers stone ground flour and refreshments using their own flour. Markets days have been held in the medieval market place for over 450 years and are on Wednesdays and Saturdays. Returning to Cow Bridge Lock, Cow Bridge Drain, on your right, was connected to the Hob Hole Drain via East Fen Lock. This is

To the south of Boston another fenland waterway, the Black Sluice Drainage and Navigation, runs for 21 miles towards the Rivers Glen and Welland. This route forms part of the Fenland Link Waterway being developed by the Lincolnshire Waterways Partnership (Lincs County Council, Environment Agency and British Waterways), and will provide a wide beam north to south inland waterway connection. A new lock has been built at its junction with the tidal Boston Haven. Until the tidal flood barrier is built down stream of the new lock a short tidal passage from Boston Grand Sluice is required. Bookings are required for this giving 24 hours notice on 01522 785041 (Mon-Fri 9am to 5pm.) To encourage visiting boaters reduced EA charges of £7.50 and £11.00 apply, larger groups of boaters can get further reductions. The usable part of the Link provides a 19-mile return trip of peaceful cruising with overnight moorings at Black Sluice Lock, where an information centre, café and boaters showers etc are available. At Hubberts Bridge the Wheatsheaf has received a Highly Commended award from the Tastes of Lincolnshire, moorings are available here and at the Barge at Swineshead Bridge. Studies of various route options, that will benefit the environment and rural community are on-going as part of the EA’s Water Framework Directive, for the connection with the River Glen. Details of the Fenland Link can be found at www.visitanglianwaterways.co.uk.

IWA waterways - Summer 2012 |

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Events 2012 Visit a show or a ra lly this summer with our comprehe nsive diary

JUNE 1st-3rd June Etruria Historic Boat Gathering Etruria Industrial Museum, Trent & Mersey Canal. www.stokemuseums.org.uk

MAY 4th-7th May IWA Northampton Boat Gathering Becket’s Park, River Nene. Boat handling competitions, day and evening entertainment, real ale bar, BBQ. www.waterways.org.uk

5th-6th May Loughborough Canal and Boat Festival Canal Bank, Grand Union Canal. Free admission. Music, exhibits, crafts, vintage vehicles, demonstrations, displays, boat trips. www.loughboroughcanalfestival.co.uk 5th-6th May Sleaford Navigation Trust Boat Gathering & South Kyme Village Festival Scarecrow competition, medieval reenactments, stalls and live music. www.sleafordnavigation.co.uk, www.skfest.co.uk 5th-7th May Tug Gathering at BCLM Black Country Living Museum, Dudley Canal. www.bclm.co.uk

5th-7th May IWA Canalway Cavalcade Little Venice, Regent’s Canal. Boaters’ gathering, pageant of boats, trade shows and stalls, music, children’s activities, competitions. food and real ale. Free admission. www.waterways.org.uk

5th-7th May Skipton Waterway Festival Skipton Canal Basin. Leeds & Liverpool Canal. Fun family event with entertainment. www.penninecruisers.com 5th-7th May Norbury Junction Canal & Food Festival Shropshire Union Canal. Craft and food stalls, cooking demonstrations, narrowboats and events. www.sncanal.org.uk 11th-18th and 20th-26th May BCN Explorer Cruises The 1st cruise starts from Curdworth, at Wigginshill Bridge on the 12th and finishing at Titford Pump House on the 18th ready for the BCNS Summer Rally. The 2nd cruise will leave the rally at Titford on the 20th finishing at Hawne Basin. www.bcnsociety.co.uk 19th-20th May Moira Canal Festival Moira Furnace, Ashby Canal. Bike stunt team, WWII re-enactment, swing band, children’s entertainment, live steam, classic cars. www.moiracanalfestival.co.uk 19th-20th May Rickmansworth Festival Rickmansworth Aquadrome, Grand Union Canal. Boat gathering, music, entertainment, beer tent, boaters’ tug o’ war and farm animals. www.rwt.org.uk

2nd-3rd June BCN 24-Hour Challenge Event open to anyone with a boat licensed for BW waters. Historic working boat and pairs welcome. Boats can start at any point on the BCN but should finish at Walsall Town Arm. £15 per boat including plaque. Entry forms 01922 428644, www.bcnsociety.co.uk

2nd-4th June IWA Trailboat Festival: Stroud on Water Marling School, Thames & Severn Canal. Canal boat trips, live music, real ale, craft and produce stalls, children’s entertainment, WOW. www.stroudonwater.org.uk

2nd-5th June Crick Boat Show & Waterway Festival Crick Marina, GU Leicester Section. Diamond Jubilee celebrations, free boat trips, children’s fair and entertainment, trade and craft stands, free boating seminars, heritage and wildlife areas, live music and much more. www.crickboatshow.com 3rd June Thames River Pageant London. A day-long programme of music, traditional fun fair and Jubilee themed entertainment. River Pageant will take place during the afternoon. www.thamesdiamondjubileepageant. org 8th-10th June Russell Newbery Register Rally Alvecote, Coventry Canal. The first RN powered hire boat is anticipated to be in attendance. There will be a variety of boats powered by Russell Newbery and National engines, and club membership is open to all traditional engine owners or enthusiasts. rnregister.org.uk

4th-7th May IWA Northampton Boat Gathering.

38

| IWA waterways - Summer 2012

8th-10th June Beale Park Boat Show Lower Basildon, River Thames. www.bealepark.co.uk

8th 10th June Brandy Wharf Leisure Park Waterways Rally River Ancholme. On the Saturday the annual raft race will commence followed by a canoe race, tug of war egg and spoon race etc. www.brandywharfleisurepark.co.uk 9th-10th June Leicester Riverside Festival Bede Park, Grand Union Leicester Section. Boat trips, live music, displays, activities for all ages. www.leicester.gov.uk/riversidefestival 9th-10th June Stoke Bruerne Gala Weekend Canal Museum. Live music and a bar on Friday night. www.stokebruernecanalmuseum. org.uk 15th-17th June Middlewich Folk & Boat Festival Trent & Mersey Canal. www.midfest.org.uk 16th-17th June Craft and Classic Car Fair Approximately 70 craft stalls and 80 classic vehicles attending the event. National Waterways Museum, Ellesmere Port, Shropshire Union Canal. www.nwm.org.uk 18th-24th June Burscough Wharf Canal Heritage Week Leeds & Liverpool Canal. Boat gathering 22nd-24th. Free event. Live music and entertainment around the wharf. www.thewoolboat.co.uk 23rd-24th June Northwich River Weaver Festival WOW for children, water activities, trip boats, music workshops, art and craft demonstrations, historic working boats, trade displays. www.rwns.co.uk 23rd-24th June Braunston Historic Boat Gathering Braunston Marina, Grand Union Canal. Twice daily boat parade, trade exhibitors, canal societies, music. Open air Songs of Praise church service on Sunday. www.braunstonmarina.co.uk


JULY

23rd-24th Ju Braunston Hi ne storic Boat Gatherin g.

30th June-1st July Stratford River Festival Recreation Ground, River Avon. Live music, craft and charity stalls, family area, beer tent, food. Illuminated boat display and fireworks on the Saturday evening. www.stratfordriverfestival.co.uk 30th June-1st July Chesterfield Canal Festival Staveley Town Basin. Free parking. Admission £3, under 12s free. Entertainment marquee, children’s rides and entertainment, miniature railway rides, music, stalls, food and real ale. Concert featuring The Swing Commanders on the Saturday evening. www.chesterfield-canal-trust.org.uk

6th-8th July Evesham River Festival River Avon. Mikron Theatre, fly pasts, food village, craft stalls, music, boat demonstrations and competitions, illuminated boat parade and fireworks display. www.eveshamriverfestival.co.uk 14th-15th July Thames Traditional Boat Rally Fawley Meadows, River Thames. Vintage vehicles, boat jumbles, attractions, displays, traditional boats, children’s entertainment. www.tradboatrally.com 20th- 22nd July Newbury Waterways Festival Victoria Park, Kennet & Avon Canal. A colourful flotilla of boats will set the scene for the canal side event. Stalls and entertainment. www.newbury.net 28th July Linslade Canal Festival Tiddenfoot Waterside Park, Grand Union Canal. Boat gathering, craft stalls, live entertainment. www.leightonlinslade-tc.gov.uk

30th June-1st July Thwaite Mills Boat Gathering Watermill Museum, Aire & Calder Navigation. Being held in conjunction with the Leeds Waterfront Festival. Live music, dance, arts and crafts, ‘on the water’ activities, heritage boats and boat trips. www.leedswaterfrontfestival.com

29th July Audlem Festival of Transport Audlem Mill, Shropshire Union Canal. Historic narrowboats, cars, motorcycles, lorries and buses. www.audlemmill.co.uk

30th June-1st July Foxton Locks Festival GU Leicester Section. Admission £3 for over 15s. Parking £1.50 per car. Viking re-enactment, live music, craft stalls, historic vehicles, children’s entertainment. www.foxtonlocksfestival.co.uk

11th-12th Auguust Blisworth Canal Festival Grand Union Canal. Free mooring, parking, entry, walks and talks, attractions. www.blisworthcanalfestival.co.uk

AUGUST

19th August Linlithgow Canal Fun Day Canal Basin, Union Canal. Stalls, art exhibition, boat trips, children’s activities, BBQ, afternoon Cardboard Boat Race. www.lucs.org.uk

8th -10th July rk Gathering. Pa e Beal

SEPTEMBER 1st-2nd September Shackerstone Family Festival Canal-side by Bridge 51, Ashby Canal. Vintage vehicles, historic boats, trade and craft stalls, live steam, real ale bar, Shackiesaurus Children’s Club. www.shackerstonefestival.co.uk 1st-2nd September Maesbury Canal Festival Montgomery Canal. Music, children’s activities, boat trips, craft stalls and demonstrations. www.canalfestival.co.uk 2nd September Angel Canal Festival City Road Lock, Regent’s Canal. Free admission. Stalls, children’s fun fair, boat trips, regatta, street theatre, boat rally. www.angelcanalfestival.org 7th- 9th September Ellesmere Boat Rally Llangollen Canal. Stalls, competitions, waterways promotion, entertainment, best illuminated and decorated boat, boats in bloom. 01829 751454, www.shropshireunion.org.uk 15th-16th September Whitchurch Rally Llangollen Canal. www.hnboc.org.uk

29th- 30th September Village at War at the Canal Museum Stoke Bruerne, Grand Union Canal. A look back in time to WWII with people in costume, vintage vehicles and entertainment. www.stokebruernecanalmuseum. org.uk

OCTOBER 20th-21st October Stourbridge Navigation Trust Open Weekend Stourbridge Town Arm, Stourbridge Canal. Admission free. Celebrating the 50th anniversary of the ‘Battle of Stourbridge’. Rally of boats, boat trips, vehicle displays, children’s rides, large craft fair. Saturday evening entertainment for boaters. Boat entry £10. www.thebondedwarehouse stourbridge.co.uk

NOVEMBER 3rd-4th November Bonfire Rally Smethwick Engine Arm, BCN. www.bcnsociety.co.uk

DECEMBER

22nd- 23rd September Tipton Community Festival BCN. www.hnboc.org.uk

15th December Illuminated Boats Stoke Bruerne, Grand Union Canal. www.hnboc.org.uk For further events during 2012 visit www.waterways.org.uk/events_festivals

25th-27th August IWA Campaign Rally: Preston Guild Canal Festival Haslam Park, Lancaster Canal. Admission to the park is free. Plenty of things to do and see for boaters, children’s activities, food and drink. www.waterways.org.uk LEFT: 9th-10th June Leicester Riverside Festival. RIGHT: 30th June - 1st July Chesterfield Canal Festival.

IWA waterways - Summer 2012 |

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Witham development plans approved The current recessional climate has not been exactly kind to plans for the commercial development of the waterways, but what could be a potentially useful scheme recently had the go-ahead beside the Witham Navigation, according to the Lincolnshire Echo in February. Situated in the pleasantly-named Cherry Willingham, just east of Lincoln itself, a “£3.7 million marina that could create up to 70 jobs has been given the green light by councillors. The 200-berth development is planned for Eastfield Rise Farm, off Fiskerton road…The site will include a workshop, a café, a 24-bedroom hotel with bar and restaurant plus 40 holiday lodges”. Whilst I do not know that part of the waterways particularly well, I would think that, by comparison with the Midland waterways, they are relatively underused. The interesting thing though is that, as with other marina applications in other parts of the country, there have been quite strong local objections. Now I can well understand practical objections, such as water supply problems or overcrowding of boats on a particular length, but neither of these would appear to operate in Lincolnshire. At Cherry Willingham “a Parish Council survey showed 42 people supported the plans while just 12 people were in opposition. And a revision of the plans was made to address these concerns. However a resident-submitted document showed

Waterway CUTTINGS DAVID BLAGROVE TAKES A LIGHTHEARTED LOOK AT WHAT THE PAPERS HAVE HAD TO SAY 76 people were against the project with just eight in support”. The Parish Council then put out a statement which said that the body “broadly supported the application. While some residents are completely against the scheme the majority support the concept of the marina”. It would seem that some of the objections were to the aspect of the marina buildings “which some members said were too stark”. This last is again an understandable objection, which can be remedied and an organisation known as Lincolnshire Partnership “made up of Lincolnshire County Council, British Waterways and the Environment Agency, has given its backing to the project”. I mention this particular affair at length because it seems to me that we are going to hear much more of such Partnerships in the not-so-distant future, as well as applications for marinas once the economic situation improves and the new Trust gets into its stride.

BLESSED ARE THE LOCKKEEPERS And so to the question that will also be rearing its head shortly, if indeed it has not done so already: that of volunteers. Both major waterway authorities have been in the news over this during the winter. In late January The Sunday Telegraph graced its supplement known as Life with a front page picture of the actor Brian Blessed in extravagant pose with a windlass at Aldermaston Lock on the River Kennet Navigation, with, imposed across Brian’s middle, the headline “BLESSED ARE THE LOCKKEEPERS” and in smaller type “Guess who’s lending a hand on our canals?” Inside, amid the customary suburban burble of such supplements, was a full-page article entitled “Pick a lock any lock.” The reporter followed Brian Blessed’s lead and became a volunteer lockkeeper on the Regent’s Canal at City Road Lock. He was rather rude about Brian Blessed’s image: “he sits there like a thespian Captain Haddock, roaring with ebullient laughter”, but goes on to explain the actor’s involvement “As a child, Blessed explains, he spent many happy hours by the canals ‘exploring on my bike and look-

ing for wildlife”. Now he is keen that we all “do what we can to protect them for the next generation.” Jake Wallis Simons, the Sunday Telegraph’s journo, duly met “two rugged lockkeepers”, one a retired fireman, the other an ex-Royal Marine and spent a while learning how to draw paddles and shove gates. He concluded “Keeping locks, it seems to me, is a highly commendable activity; sociable, healthy and rich with tradition. And as an added bonus, you might just catch a glimpse of Brian Blessed drifting cheerfully downstream”. That same month the Environment Agency was reported by BBC local radio as saying that “it wants people to help at all 44 locks on the non-tidal stretch of the Thames between May and September…to work alongside lock and weir keepers, assisting boats and giving advice to visitors. Andrew Graham, Waterways Volunteer Manager at the EA, said: “This is the second year we have invited volunteers to help us manage and operate our locks along the Thames, and we

hope to build on the success of last year. We had more than 80 volunteers helping us out along the river during the boating season last year, and we want to extend the invitation to others who want to get involved. People don’t have to live right next to the River Thames to volunteer with us; we want people who live in the wider community to get more involved too. As well as helping boats to pass through the lock, volunteers can use what they know about the Thames and its surroundings to help us to inform visitors about everything it has to offer. We are expecting a busy year on the Thames with the Queen’s Jubilee pageant and the Olympic rowing at Dorney Lake, so the knowledge and enthusiasm of local volunteers will be invaluable.”

IWA waterways - Summer 2012 |

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Hotel Boat Holidays A holiday aboard our hotel boat Tranquil Rose offers you fully serviced accommodation with good food freshly prepared each day. We cruise the Thames, the Wey, the Kennet & Avon Canal, and the Grand Union Canal into the heart of London at Little Venice. For more information on possibly the most relaxing of holidays contact: Thames & Chilterns Holiday Cruises www.tranquilrose.co.uk Telephone: 07966 248 079

SERVICES

Moorings available Visitors welcome Breathtaking waterside destination and ideally located peaceful haven in the heart of the Midlands. For moorers’ there is everything you could want: full length boat jetties, 16amp electricity and water, workshop, drydock, wide open water space and 4 STAR graded facility blocks. Call 01283 703 332 for a mooring pack or email info@merciamarina.co.uk www.merciamarina.co.uk

HANBURY WHARF ENGINEERING SERVICES – FOR ALL YOUR MAINTENANCE NEEDS. • On-Site Crane • Blacking • Engine Servicing • Mechanical Repairs • Electrical Installations and Repairs • Charging Problems • Steelwork Repairs • Anodes • Plumbing and Heating • Solid Fuel Stove Guards. Call 01905 771018 for a quote or visit Hanbury Wharf, home of The New & Used Boat Co.

Waterside Boaters Lodges Complete your boating experience with a lodge at Mercia Marina. Lodges come with a mooring close by and there is no mooring fees payable for 5 years! Brand new lodges from £130k but hurry the government is proposing to add 20% VAT from October 2012

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Waterways

World When built over 200 years ago, the UK’s canals enabled the industrial revolution to take place. It began in the UK and rapidly spread around the world. Without our distinctive narrow canals, with their unique narrowboats, this would not have been possible. Remarkably, much of the system remains today, virtually unaltered - a testament to the engineers of the late 18th century NarrowBoat Magazine celebrates this heritage with regular articles on the waterways, the boats that traded on them, the people that ran them and their distinctive folk arts.

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Subscribe today and get each issue delivered to your door each quarter

WATERWAYS ADVERTISING Summer 2012 Waterways is distributed free to all members of the Association with a readership of over 20,000. Advertising in Waterways offers a precisely targeted medium for businesses in all fields connected with inland waterways, such as boating, hiring, insurance, building, publishing, catering, chandlery or brokerage. To advertise in IWA Waterways please contact Ian Sharpe, Advertising Manager, 151 Station Street, Burton-Upon-Trent, Staffordshire, DE14 1BG. 01283 742 965 or ian.sharpe@wwonline.co.uk

48

Index to Advertisers AB Tuckey .................................................48 ABC Leisure Group Ltd ................................4 ABNB ..........................................................1 Addex Trading ..........................................11 Axiom Propellers .......................................45 B.C. Boat Management Ltd .........................4 Blisworth Tunnel NarrowBoats Ltd .............40 Boatshed Grand Union ..............................40 Braunston Marina Ltd ................................19 BWML .........................................................7 Canal Boat Cruises ......................................6 Canal Cruising Co Ltd ................................40 Canal Junction Ltd.......................................8 Channelglaze ..............................................6

| IWA waterways - Summer 2012

Colecraft Engineering Ltd............................8 Debdale Wharf Marina ..............................40 Deck Safe .................................................10 Fox’s Marina ..............................................48 Heron Maps ..............................................10 Kings Lock Chandlery ............................ 6,45 Lee Sanitation .............................................6 Limekiln Ltd ................................................4 Maestermyn Group ...................................40 Methley Bridge Chandlery .........................10 Metro Float Ltd ...........................................5 Midland Chandlers ................................. OBC Morris Lubricants...................................... IBC Pinders........................................................1

PRM Newage...............................................8 Rose Narrowboats .....................................45 RYA...........................................................41 Saga .........................................................11 Salamander Stoves....................................11 Selby Boat Centre .....................................17 Shoreline (UK) Ltd .......................................8 Swanley Bridge Marina ..............................41 Travel Sat ..................................................31 VideoActive ..............................................40 Websters Insulation Ltd ...............................6 Wharf House Narrowboats Ltd ..................40 Whilton Marina ........................................ IFC Worcester Marine Windows Ltd ................41


CANAL BOAT PRODUCTS FROM A NAMEYOU CAN TRUST Morris Lubricants has been blending engine oils for over 140 years. We have a range of oils specially designed for canal boats. That’s why when you choose to put Morris Lubricants in your boat, you can do so with peace of mind. These specialist oils get to work quickly at the heart of the engine, even at low temperatures, whatever the conditions. The special formula canal boat range prevents bore glazing and bore polishing, protects components from wear and corrosion and provides improved cold start. There’s also a great range of products for all your marine needs, like anti-freeze that works at temperatures as low as -34ºC, biodegradable marine two stroke lubricant, and water resistant grease. With sound, high quality products and uncompromising customer service, you can rely on Morris Lubricants to protect your pride and joy for years to come.

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SUMMER 2012 | NEWS | FREIGHT | RESTORATION PLEASE SEND ANY NEWS AND VIEWS ON INLAND WATERWAYS FREIGHT TO DAVID HILLING C/O IWA HEAD OFFICE

SOME GOOD NEWS

O

ver the ten years it has been in operation the Whitwood wharf on the Wakefield branch of the Aire & Calder Navigation has handled over 1.5 million tonnes of Trent aggregates. This must represent over 100,000 lorry journeys, loaded and light, and is a valuable demonstration of the potential of waterborne freight where the conditions are suitable. This is not everywhere but there are many places where potential is ignored by planners in local government and by possible customers. Plans for the Icknield Port Loop Wharf on the BCN to be placed in the local development land portfolio have been challenged and it is now to be classed as operational property. It is used by BW maintenance craft and this will now continue. Without wharf facilities and storage, waterway maintenance would be difficult or impossible and on many

waterways this must provide the minimum wharf requirement and a possible basis for expansion. Robert Wynn & Sons Inland Navigator was a barge modified specifically to carry large indivisible loads of up to 300 tonnes and has often carried project cargo such as generators, transformers and similar items with waterside electricity plant providing an obvious market, but not the only one. The demand for such movements is in the main occasional rather than regular and there would clearly be scope for some more even spread of demand. It is understood that the barge has been involved in trials for shipments of freight between Hull and Newark and hopefully this will lead to a contract. Also in the same region, water transport could well service a waste timber-fuelled power station which has ministerial approval at Pollington, east of Knottingly

Wynn & Son’s Inland Navigator may be about to carry freight between Hull and Newark.

Icknield Port Loop Wharf will rem in use by BW maintenance ain craft.

and close to the Aire & Calder Navigation. On the site of a disused airfield, England’s largest wood pellet mill based on clean waste wood opened in 2010 and the new 52 MW power station would be adjacent to this source of biomass – eventually 360,000 tonnes a year. Local concern regarding the environmental consequences of increased road transport would be alleviated by use of barges and a private road

link from wharf to plant. Barges could provide the basis for waste wood movement from a wide area, provide access to Humber or Trent ports should imported biomass be needed and also be used for outward movement of residual ash.

Waterways Freight in London

I

n the London Plan the onus is on boroughs to protect existing water freight facilities, maximise use of water transport and identify opportunities and locations suitable for extending waterway use and the promotion of sustainable transport. The freight group of the London Waterways Commission is providing guidance to the boroughs but rather than adopt the concept of ‘safeguarding’ of wharves, so effectively adopted by the Port of London Authority after 1997, it has provided a list of loading and unloading places which are either now operational or provide obvious possibilities for use in the future. Just over 20 such sites are identified from Hillingdon in the west to Newham in the east and it is for the boroughs through their Local Development Frameworks to make decisions that will be in line with the requirements of the London Plan. It is to be hoped that some boroughs will adopt a policy which amounts to protection of wharves.

At this moment several of the wharves identified for freight potential are subject to planning proposals which would make freight handling impossible. One such is Essex Wharf on the Lee Navigation where the Lee Valley Regional Park Authority has reached an agreement with the London Borough of Waltham Forest and is withdrawing its Judicial Review action against planning consent for residential flats on the site. This effectively puts an end to any potential for the wharf to be used for commercial purposes, as well as meaning that a substantial piece of the Regional Park is lost too. It would seem to be the case that the critical environmental arguments for a shift to water transport are still not getting across but it is to be hoped that the London boroughs, and indeed planners

Lost for freight use – Essex Wharf on the Lee.

elsewhere, will recognise in a positive way the potential and advantages of making greater use of waterborne freight. A good starting point might be to ensure that the critical decision makers all have to hand a copy of Planning for Freight on Inland Waterways (DfT/Defra, 2004). While in parts this document has been overtaken by changes in the planning system, all too many local government decision makers who could influence a shift of freight from roads to water seem never to have come across this valuable guide to action.

IWA waterways - Summer 2012 |

17


AMPHIBIOUS HOUSE ON THE THAMES Some cheerful news appeared in the Daily Mail and other mainstream papers about a house by the Thames at Marlow that “Rises to escape a flood”. This construction seems to be in effect a sort of permanently moored boat that looks like a house sited in a dock. It has been designed by “Londonbased architects Baca, flood specialists who have worked on projects in New Orleans and Holland.” The ingenious design “will cost around 20 per cent more than building a conventional similar-sized home – but there should be major savings on insurance costs”. Intriguingly the Environment Agency are prepared to allow this development much closer to the river’s edge than a conventional house. It will in fact be built on the “site of a dilapidated 1930s bungalow ten yards from the river’s edge, which will be

pulled down”. I have mentioned in previous articles the growing interest in renewable energy from water. Two items, again from The Yorkshire Post during the winter, bore this out. Both dealt with the proposal to use the River Don near Sheffield for hydro-electric experiments. The first, in January, told us that “Sheffield Renewables, the group also behind a hydropower project further up the River Don, has been drawing up plans for the water wheel project for months and has now submitted them to Sheffield council…If given the go-ahead, the wheel will be built in a former water wheel pit in Alma Street.” The second item, in February, revealed that planning permission had been duly granted “The replacement wheel will be designed for a flow of two tonnes of water per second, generating around 75,000kWh of

electricity per year. This is the amount of electricity consumed by about 20 typical family homes, providing a saving of around 40 tonnes of carbon dioxide per year.” The same Sheffield Renewables gained planning permission a year ago for a second project known as the Jordan Dam Hydro scheme. The scheme “is more advanced,

Crocodiles in the Lea… Although most of us waterway enthusiasts are presently concerned with the forthcoming changeover for British Waterways to the new Trust, we are sometimes surprised that the media do not really think that this is the most important thing that has ever occurred in the story of mankind. It is possible I suppose that we look at the world through the wrong end of a telescope sometimes, but then the things that concern the media when it comes to waterway matters are sometimes less political than we might wish. Take for example the reportage by the BBC London News at the end of last year. “A goose-eating beast is lurking in the watery depths under the shadow of the Olympic Stadium, a boatman has warned.” The man concerned said “he had spotted a Canada goose being pulled below the surface of the River Lea in east London, which “disappeared so fast it didn’t make a sound”. He continued: “It was pretty surprising the speed with which it disappeared - and it didn’t come back up…British

42

| IWA waterways - Summer 2012

Waterways …asked people to report any further sightings.” The weight of the goose was estimated to be about 7kg. A British Waterways spokeswoman said of the incident: “We don’t believe there is a crocodile in the river.” Neither do I, but it just goes to show what grabs the public interest. Mind you, in my view Canada geese deserve all they get, and an old working boatman friend told me they don’t even make good eating.

…and gunslingers on the GU If someone wants to make the point that all my geese are swans, several national papers reported on the terrorist swan of the Grand Union Canal, known as “Tyson”. The Daily Mail even went so far as to devote a whole page to his doings at the end of March, complete with pictures of a hapless canoeist who was overturned with his boat at Bugbrooke. “The bird, standing 4ft tall with an 8ft wingspan, batters anyone who

[it has an Archimedean screw rather than a wheel DB] with a Community Share Offer expected later this year. This will give people and organisations the opportunity to contribute to the half a million pound building costs”. Our local Branch, I am informed is supporting Sheffield Renewables and maintaining a watching brief generally.

dares to venture near his nest. Locals say he has attacked at least three people in the last month. His antics have meant that a two-mile stretch of the popular Grand Union Canal in Bugbrooke, Northamptonshire, is now a ‘no-go area’ for children and families.” Mind you, it is not only swans that seem to be protective of this part of the cut. In February The Daventry Express reported that a live-aboard boater had received a seven year prison sentence for threatening a family in a small boat at Weedon with a gun. The accused had become involved in “an altercation”, as a result of which he attacked “the grandfather and pressed a Taser against his neck. Although the prohibited weapon made a buzzing sound it failed to discharge a high-voltage pulse of electricity.” The man “pleaded guilty to assault and three offences of illegal possession of weapons” last September. So, what with aggressive swans and Tasers, look out round Weedon and Bugbrooke. But not to worry on the Leeds & Liverpool, where The Yorkshire Post reports that a couple of Radio Leeds presenters were about “to embark on a 127.5 mile journey on the Leeds and Liverpool canal, using a Swan-shaped pedalo called Grace… The money raised is for Sport Relief”.


Directory - May 2012 HEAD OFFICE Island House, Moor Road, Chesham HP5 1WA. Tel: 01494 783453 e-mail: iwa@waterways.org.uk Website: www.waterways.org.uk Vice Presidents: Harry Arnold MBE, David Blagrove, Chris Coburn MBE, David Court OBE, Brian Dice OBE, David Fletcher CBE, Illtyd Harrington JP, David Hilling MBE, Tony Hirst OBE, John Humphries OBE, The Viscountess Knollys DL OBE, The Earl of Shannon, Sonia Rolt OBE, Audrey Smith OBE, David Suchet CBE, Sheila Suchet, Paul Wagstaffe MBE, David Wain OBE All Trustees and National Committees can be contacted via Head Office. Board of Trustees: Clive Henderson (Chairman), Chris Birks, Ivor Caplan, Ray Carter, Alastair Chambers, Les Etheridge (Deputy Chairman), Gordon Harrower, Alasdair Lawrance, Alan Platt, John Pomfret, Paul Roper (Deputy Chairman), Peter Scott, Jim Shead, Paul Strudwick, Vaughan Welch, Ian West Finance Committee: Les Etheridge (Chairman). Contact via Head Office. David Carrington, Mike Dyer, Gordon Harrower (Deputy Chairman), Gareth Jones, Gren Messham, Nick Parker, Gillian Smith, Kerry White Navigation Committee: Paul Roper (Chairman). Tel: 0118 981 3381 paul.roper@waterways.org.uk John Baylis (Deputy Chairman), Mike Carter, Alastair Chambers, Ian Fletcher, Peter Kelly, John Pomfret, Peter Scott, Paul Strudwick, Vaughan Welch Restoration Committee: Vaughan Welch (Chairman). Tel: 0121 477 9782. vaughan.welch@waterways.org.uk Chris Birks, Ray Buss, Geraint Coles, Edward Gittins, Tony Hinsley, Martin Ludgate, Keith Noble (Deputy Chairman), Paul Roper, Martin Smith, Mike Valiant, Luke Walker (Deputy Chairman) Promotions and Communications Committee: Jerry Sanders (Chairman). Tel: 01283 716 158. jerry.sanders@waterways.org.uk Julie Arnold, Gillian Bolt, Ivor Caplan, Ray Carter, Madeline Dean, Jo Gilbertson, Clive Henderson, Elizabeth Payne, Jim Shead, Paul Strudwick, Vaughan Welch, Helen Whitehouse Waterway Recovery Group: Mike Palmer (Chairman). Tel: 01564 785293. mike.palmer@waterways.org.uk Inland Waterways Enterprises Limited Board of Directors: Les Etheridge (Chairman). Contact via Head Office. Neil Edwards, Clive Henderson IWA Festivals Division: Ian West (Chairman). Tel: 01564 230104. ian.west@waterways.org.uk Inland Waterways Freight Group: John Pomfret (Chairman). Tel: 01788 891027. john.pomfret@waterways.org.uk Hon. Consultant Engineers: Roy Sutton, BA Hons MICE, Tony Harrison, BSc (Hons), DHE, MICE. Tel: 01491 872380 Hon. Consultant Planners: Bob Dewey BA (Hons), MBA, MRTPI, Martin Jiggens IWA Committee for Wales: General secretary, Gerallt Hughes. Tel: 01341 250631 Essex Waterways Limited Board of Directors: Roy Chandler (Chairman), Neil Edwards, Jim Jenkins, John Pomfret. Navigation Manager: Colin Edmond

REGIONAL CONTACTS East Midlands Chairman: John Pomfret. Tel: 01788 891027. john.pomfret@waterways.org.uk Eastern Secretary: Nigel Long. Tel: 01733 553782. nigel.long@waterways.org.uk London Contact: Paul Strudwick. Tel: 01245 358342. paul.strudwick@waterways.org.uk North East & Yorkshire Chairman: Peter Scott. Tel: 0114 2301870. peter.scott@waterways.org.uk North West Chairman: Alan Platt. Tel: 01352 720649. alan.platt@waterways.org.uk

South East Chairman: Paul Roper. Tel: 0118 9813381. paul.roper@waterways.org.uk South West Chairman: Chris Birks. Tel: 01278 734598. chris.birks@waterways.org.uk West Midlands Chairman: Vaughan Welch. Tel: 0121 4779782. vaughan.welch@waterways.org.uk

BRANCH CONTACTS Avon & Wiltshire John Gornall. Tel: 0117 329 6470. avonandwilts@waterways.org.uk Birmingham, Black Country & Worcestershire Dave Pearson. Tel: 01299 404273. birminghambcw@waterways.org.uk Cambridge John Hodgson. Tel: 01234 344884. cambridge@waterways.org.uk Chelmsford Mrs Chris Chandler. Tel: 01245 223732. chelmsford@waterways.org.uk Chester & District Gillian Bolt. Tel: 0151 678 9300. chesteranddistrict@waterways.org.uk Chiltern Peter Winter. Tel: 01494 819065. chiltern@waterways.org.uk East Yorkshire Mrs Chris Stones. Tel: 01482 875894. eastyorkshire@waterways.org.uk Gloucestershire & Herefordshire Roger Holmes. Tel: 01594 840316. gloucandhereford@waterways.org.uk Guildford & Reading Gareth Jones. Tel: 01306 713049. guildford@waterways.org.uk Ipswich Charles Stride. Tel: 01728 831061. ipswich@waterways.org.uk Kent & East Sussex Roy Sutton. Tel: 01342 317569 Lee & Stort John Shacklock. Tel: 01992 465643. leeandstort@waterways.org.uk Leicestershire John Evans. Tel: 01509 416647. leicestershire@waterways.org.uk Lichfield Mike Moorse. Tel: 07799 140068. lichfield@waterways.org.uk Lincolnshire Penny Carnell. Tel: 01469 530138. lincolnshire@waterways.org.uk Manchester Steve Connolly. Tel: 01942 679310. manchester@waterways.org.uk Middlesex Robin Bishop. Tel: 020 8452 2632. middlesex@waterways.org.uk Milton Keynes Peter Caswell. Tel: 07702 668924. miltonkeynes@waterways.org.uk North & East London Roger Squires. Tel: 020 7232 0987. roger.squires@waterways.org.uk North Lancashire & Cumbria Tony Dunning. Tel: 07730 113894. lancsandcumbria@waterways.org.uk North Riding Branch Tony Martin. Tel: 07588 236597. northriding@waterways.org.uk Northampton Sandie Morton. Tel: 01604 858294. northampton@waterways.org.uk Nottinghamshire & Derbyshire Jackie Morrice. Tel: 0115 849 1575. nottsandderbys@waterways.org.uk Oxfordshire Chris Wardley. Tel: 01295 810610. oxfordshire@waterways.org.uk Peterborough Nigel Long. Tel: 01733 553782. peterborough@waterways.org.uk Shrewsbury District & North Wales Dawn Aylwin. Tel: 01691 830403. shrewsandnwales@waterways.org.uk Solent & Arun Mike Laishley. Tel: 023 9232 5000. solentandarun@waterways.org.uk South London Lesley Pryde. Tel: 07787 372408. southlondon@waterways.org.uk South Wales Margaret Gwalter. Tel: 01792 851271. southwales@waterways.org.uk South Yorkshire & Dukeries Mavis Paul. Tel: 0114 2683927. southyorks@waterways.org.uk Stoke-on-Trent Alison Smedley. Tel: 01538 385388. stokeontrent@waterways.org.uk Warwickshire Tina Jackson. Tel: 01788 891545. warwickshire@waterways.org.uk West Country Peter Kelly. Tel: 01752 843556. westcountry@waterways.org.uk West Riding Alastair Furniss. Tel: 0113 2539401. westriding@waterways.org.uk


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IWA Waterways Magasine Summer 2012  

IWA Waterways Magasine Summer 2012

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