Locks and Found at WRG Bonfire Bash09 November 2017
Photo: Paul Rodgers, IWA trustee and WRGie gets down to work at the Bonfire Bash 2017
On the 4th and 5th November, IWA's Waterway Recovery Group (WRG) held its annual Bonfire Bash Weekend on the Uttoxeter Canal in Staffordshire. 80 WRG volunteers from across the country, joined by volunteers from Caldon and Uttoxeter Canals Trust carried out major vegetation clearance along the line of the old, but now very overgrown, canal and towpath at Alton. WRG’s specialist Forestry team who had been on site in the week leading up to the Bash between Carringtons Lock and Bridge 70, worked alongside volunteers to clear around 300m of the canal bed and towpath. The Trust were thrilled when the teams discovered an unheard of wharf as well as the bywash culvert of Charlesworth’s Lock – the exact location of the lock was previously unknown. Over the weekend a small team of volunteers also started hedgelaying near Crumpwood Weir.
It is hoped that this work will help the Trust establish a walking route along the length of the Uttoxeter Canal, utilising as much of the original towpath as possible. Steve Wood, Deputy Chairman of Caldon & Uttoxeter Canal Trust, is delighted with the outcome of the weekend, saying: “We are now one step closer to opening a new path along the length of the Uttoxeter Canal, giving local people the chance to reconnect with this superb piece of our local heritage. The Waterway Recovery Group weekend was a huge amount of fun and it was fantastic to see so many volunteers on site. Weekends like this give us all a boost as we work hard to bring the waterway back to life.”
Click here to see photos from the weekend.
WRG is looking for a site for the 2018 Bonfire Bash (3rd/4th November 2018) – if you’ve got a stretch of canal that needs clearing get in touch with the WRG Head Office team – Jenny Black (firstname.lastname@example.org) or call 01494 783 453.