IWA Recognises Contributions of its Members01 October 2013
The work of IWA volunteers was recognised at The Inland Waterways Association’s Annual General Meeting on the 28th September. The premier award, the Cyril Styring Trophy for the member who has made an outstanding contribution in furthering the Association's campaign, went to Harry Arnold who started photographing traffic on the Bridgewater Canal over fifty years ago when he lived in Warrington, and became more involved with the waterways and The Inland Waterways Association when he ran a hire boat firm at Norbury Junction.
Harry was involved with IWA Festivals for a number of years, but his biggest contribution to IWA was his editing of Waterways magazine from 1992 to 2007 during which time he raised the profile and immediacy of the magazine.
Although Harry has not been an IWA trustee in the last 30 years he has had a unique involvement, through his photography, with British Waterways and other navigation authorities and has often spoken on behalf of IWA. Harry is also a vice-president of the Association.
Harry Arnold said: "I am so pleased to be given this award, not least because of the number of friends and well-known IWA volunteers that have received it in the past. I have marvellous stories of working with so many of them, but would especially like to mention Graham Palmer – no longer with us but a fellow founder of Waterway Recovery Group and a great friend of my family, who received this wonderful engraved award three times. On reflection, since joining IWA in 1961, I have made so many good friends through IWA and its waterways network; thank you."
The Branch Achievement Award was presented to IWA Chiltern Branch for its consistent hard work, fundraising efforts and involvement with local events.
Richard Bird Medals for members of the Association whose efforts and support are considered to have brought significant benefit to the Association over a sustained period were awarded to Roy Cleverly, (Milton Keynes Branch), Mick and Carole Golds (Erewash Canal), John Stockland and Margaret Beardsmore (both of Lichfield Branch), John Brice (Chiltern Branch) and The Canal Cruising Company of Stone, which was founded in1948 by Randell Wyatt and has been run by the Wyatt family ever since. In August 1948, IWA founder Robert Aickman hired the Ailsa Craig from R H Wyatt at Stone and was accompanied by Elizebeth Jane Howard. Also on part the trip were James and Anthea Sutherland and Angela and Tom Rolt. All six people undertook the trip on the Huddersfield Narrow Canal and the passage through Standedge Tunnel, which was probably the last complete passage of the canal before its re-opening in 2001. The Wyatt family continue to actively support the work of their local IWA North Staffordshire & South Cheshire branch today.
The John Heap Silver Salver for an outstanding contribution to fundraising was awarded to Roy Chandler for his work in arranging third party funding of more than £1 million for the Chelmer & Blackwater Navigation, managed by IWA’s subsidiary company Essex Waterways Ltd.
The Christopher Power Prize for the most significant contribution to the restoration of an inland waterway went to Bernie Jones who was elected chairman of the Shrewsbury & Newport Canals Trust in 2011, and since then has led this challenging restoration which covers former canals of about 40 miles length running through three local authorities. The Shrewsbury Canal and Newport Branch of the Shropshire Union Canal run from Norbury Junction through Newport and Wappenshall to Shrewsbury, and include the first cast iron aqueduct at Longden-on-Tern and pass alongside Shrewsbury Flax Mill, the world’s first iron-framed building.