Photo: Droitwich Barge Lock which was reopened in 2008 after after more than 30 years of campaigning by IWA and restoration work carried out by IWA's Waterway Recovery Group (photo by Chris Handscombe)
IWA has welcomed Canal & River Trust's (CRT) renewed commitment to the restoration of Britain's inland waterways, and has provided funding to encourage this.
IWA and CRT organised a workshop for restoration groups, which took place on Saturday 10th May. The workshop was developed to provide local waterway groups with support in the progression of their restoration projects. Delegates heard from external experts who presented their research in to the economic and social benefits of waterway restoration, took part in discussion groups, and saw the launch of a new video that demonstrated the wider benefits of restoration. The video can now be viewed on the IWA's website.
IWA and CRT have recently formed a Restoration Partnership to raise awareness of, and encourage broad support for waterway restoration. As part of this, IWA's Restoration Committee provided a grant of £5,000 towards the cost of two new CRT staff members, recruited to focus on restoration.
These initiatives build on IWA's long history of waterway restoration campaigns, that has seen hundreds of miles of waterways saved and restored to use, since the Association was founded in 1946:
IWA's National Chairman, Les Etheridge said "We're really pleased to see that Canal & River Trust is getting behind the campaign to support restoration of the UK's canals and rivers. We hope that their commitment to the promotion of restoration will continue to raise awareness, support, and investment in local projects, for the benefit of the wider waterways community."
Les Etheridge added "Today, people using the Kennet & Avon, Ripon, Caldon, Peak Forest, Droitwich and Bridgwater & Taunton canals, and many others, plus river navigations such as the Upper Great Ouse, so easily forget that these were once derelict waterways reliant on IWA and other voluntary support. We need to encourage today's restorers, who face even greater challenges, to achieve simliar great feats. The active support of CRT is a vital step in this process, which is why we welcome this opportunity to work together."
Resources for waterway restoration groups can be found on IWA's website.
Photo: Canalway Cavalcade 2014 (photo by Roger Squires)
Record numbers of people came out to enjoy the colourful spectacle and fun at IWA's 2014 Canalway Cavalcade over the May Day Bank Holiday weekend at Little Venice in London.
Over 130 boats attended, including a Dutch barge, Azolla, owned by Graeme Heap. She celebrated her 100th birthday at Cavalcade, en route to her birthplace in the Netherlands.
At the Opening Ceremony on Saturday afternoon Libby Bradshaw, Events Manager on the organising committee, introduced Richard Parry, Chief Executive of Canal & River Trust, and Les Etheridge, IWA National Chairman. Both emphasised the value of the waterways, the work already achieved and the necessity to continue the job of preserving them. They also stressed the need for more volunteers, not only to work to restore the waterways, but to assist in the organising of such successful events as Canalway Cavalcade.
Councillor Sarah Richardson, Lord Mayor of the City of Westminster, welcomed everybody and thanked IWA for putting on the event. As has become the tradition at Cavalcade, she then rang the ship’s bell to officially open the festival.
The pageant, after the opening ceremony, and procession of illuminated boats on Sunday evening were very well attended with some remarkable constructions including Nelson’s Column, a replica Boris with one of his bikes and some guards from the Trooping of the Colour. There was a wonderful atmosphere amongst the crowds, throughout the three days of the festival.
The awards were presented by John Edmonds, Vice President of London Region IWA, on Monday afternoon and all the waterborne competitions and processions were supported by British Land.
The Marcus Boudier Trophy, for the best decorated privately entered boat in Saturday's Pageant went to Muttley owned by Michael and Marion Birch.
The Ray Dunford Buckby Can was not awarded this year because there were no entrants.
The Vic Trott Memorial Trophy, for the couple in the best 'Boaters Sunday Best' costume was awarded to Robin and Laura Ormerod on Miss Matty.
The Cruise Electric Trophy, for the best illuminated boat in Sunday evening's procession went to Tryst No. 1, owned by Tim and Sue Gwynne-Evans.
The Graham Capelin Award, for the best entry by a boater who has not previously taken part in either the Saturday Pageant or Illuminated Procession of Boats, was awarded to Little Gem, owned by Franze Progatzky.
The Westminster Trophy, sponsored by the City of Westminster for the winner of the Boat Handling Competition, was won by Ray Oakhill on Stronghold.
The Roger Squires Trophy, presented by St Pancras Cruising Club in recognition of Roger's 10 years as their Commodore, for the best novice competitor in the Boat Handling Competition, was awarded to Little Gem, owner Franze Progatzky.
The Mike Stevens Memorial Trophy, for the 'Best Boat' at Canalway Cavalcade, selected from all the boat entries at the event, awarded in recognition of Mike's outstanding contribution to IWA and Canalway Cavalcade during his lifetime, went to Nimrod, owned by Craig Haslam.
Christine Smith, Publicity Manager, said "I wish to especially thank the young people who have worked so hard supporting me with the publicity this year: Hannah and James Ranken, Lydia Collins, Gemma Bolton and Stephanie Pay. I have waited years for a TV channel to feature Cavalcade and then three came along at once!"
Jerry Sanders, Chairman and Commercial Director of the IWA Canalway Cavalcade Organising Committee said: "Attendance has been record breaking - over 32,000 people came, boosted on Monday by our appearance on BBC Breakfast TV. The traders were extremely busy and many have already booked for next year. I’d like to thank all the 100 volunteers, who helped to organise and set up the event. for their hard work and dedication. It was an outstanding success."
Photo: Narrowboat Raymond at IWA Northampton Branch's Braunston Boat Gathering (photo by Tim Coghlan)
Over thirty boats gathered in glorious sunshine for IWA Northampton Branch’s first ever Boat Gathering held in the historic Nurser’s canal dock at Braunston Marina over the May Day Bank Holiday (May 2nd – 5th). The event was boosted in numbers by members of local adoption group Braunston Canal Society, one of the beneficiaries of funds raised over the weekend, and also some of the 250 moorers based at the Marina.
The weekend saw a full programme of activities including guided walks, a treasure hunt, quizzes, games and competitions. Prize for Best Turned Out Boat was won by The Friends of Raymond who also received a donation of £166 from the proceeds of the raffle on Sunday night towards their work restoring, maintaining and exhibiting historic working boats Raymond and Nutfield.
Highlights over the weekend were visits from CRT South East Waterway Manager Neil Owen and his family, and CRT Chief Executive Officer Richard Parry who took time out from talking to visiting boaters to take a trip down to Braunston Turn and back aboard Aldgate steered by Nick Wolfe. Chris Heaton-Harris, local MP for Daventry, also dropped by.
Chris Burton, of Braunston Canal Society said “We were delighted that IWA Northampton Branch chose Braunston as the site for its Annual Gathering this year and were pleased to assist and make it into an enjoyable and busy weekend for everyone. The Branch has been very supportive of our volunteer work and we were glad to be able to repay some of this help.”
Tim Coghlan, owner of Braunston Marina, who kindly allowed IWA Northampton Branch use of the marina facilities said “With excellent weather - especially for a bank holiday, it proved a very successful and enjoyable gathering. This was both so for our visiting friends from IWA and our moorers who welcomed the onsite real ale bar, BBQ and fish ‘n chips facilities!”
All in all it was an enjoyable fun filled weekend with plenty to do for everyone.
In total, IWA has received over £800 through the easyfundraising scheme, which allows online shoppers to raise funds for IWA, at no extra cost to themselves.
Customers who wish to support IWA can buy goods from retailers such as John Lewis and amazon.com through the easyfundraising website and IWA will receive the equivalent of 1.5% of the total price paid for the goods. For example if you bought a £10 book sold by amazon.com but through easyfundraising, IWA would receive a 1.5% donation of 15p. The customer would pay the same price for the goods when purchasing via easyfundraising as they would if purchasing from the retailer direct. The 1.5% donation comes from the retailer in the form of a cash reward to the customer, which easyfundraising collects and sends on to your chosen good cause at no extra cost.
In just a few easy steps you can sign up to use this service via the easyfundraising website. To create an account that supports IWA, visit the Association's page on the easyfundraising website and sign up from there. When you want to make an online purchase you will need to sign in to easyfundraising.org.uk and select one of over 2700 participating retailers participating in the scheme. You will then be directed to the website of the online retailer to select and pay for their products. A percentage of the total will be donated to IWA.
For more information about easyfundraising visit its website or visit the IWA easyfundraising page to sign up and support the Association today.
A planning application was made on 18th October 2013 on behalf of Scottish Widows for an extensive development alongside the Oxford Canal in Banbury town centre. This included the demolition of the northern car park and the General Foods Sports and Social Club and the erection of a glazed canopy over the Oxford Canal. IWA Oxfordshire Branch submitted an objection to the development.
In May a revised proposal was submitted, which retains the General Foods Sports and Social Club and margin adjacent to the canal and removes the canopy over the canal. The latest proposal and more information can be viewed at the IWA Oxfordshire Branch web pages.
IWA’s new Marketing Committee is looking to recruit two or three new members over the coming year and would welcome expressions of interest from IWA members who would be interested in serving on the committee. Ideally candidates should have a marketing or commercial background and the time to contribute towards marketing strategy and development for the Association. Some expertise amongst the media or waterways trade would be a particular advantage. The committee meets about six times per year, usually in the southern Midlands. For further details, please contact Frank Wilson (committee chairman – email@example.com) or Neil Edwards (chief executive) at Head Office.
Some IWA members may have been taken by surprise to find a copy of the proxy form for the Extraordinary General Meeting held on 12th April on the reverse of the mailing sheet insert in the Summer edition (published in May) of Waterways magazine. This was due to an error at the printers (the reverse of the mailing sheet should have been blank). Both the printers and IWA apologise to members for any confusion caused.
The Summer 2014 issue of IWA's Waterways Magazine is now available to download or read online.
IWA is saddened to report that Sylvia Rymell, longtime Secretary of IWA West Country Branch, passed away on 24th April after three years of unsuccessful treatment for Ovarian Cancer.
Sylvia, together with her husband Tony, led the successful campaign for the restoration of the Bridgwater & Taunton Canal, and was associated with many other West Country waterways, including the Bude and Grand Western canals.
Sylvia was tireless in promoting IWA from Truro to Bournemouth and took the IWA West Country sales and publicity stand to events throughout the country. The region's annual AGM weekend was Sylvia’s idea and attracted many members to the AGM, as were members trips to distant waterways, fundraising for restoration and much more. For over thirty years Sylvia was involved with IWA West Country Branch and she inspired many others to follow suit and give their time to run a trip boat, man a sales stand and serve on a committee.
IWA is saddened to report that Ann Appleton, a member of IWA Shrewsbury District & North Wales Branch, passed away on Monday 12th May, at the Severn Hospice. Ann and her husband Hugh joined the committee two years ago, and were very active in branch activities.
Amber Jenkins has joined the Association's staff at IWA Head Office as Assistant Volunteer Co-ordinator, a newly created role supporting Jenny Black, Volunteer Co-ordinator, with Waterway Recovery Group (WRG) activities. The position has been funded from WRG's restricted funds. Amber can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Photo: Lancaster Canal Trust's trip boat Waterwitch (photo by: Lancaster Canal Trust)
Lancaster Canal Trust has been successful in securing funding through the Heritage Lottery Fund’s (HLF) Catalyst Grant. The Trust plans to use the grant to develop ways to encourage young people and families to get involved in practical activities and support the Trust’s work along the northerly section of the Lancaster Canal.
The first step is to research local people’s attitudes towards the Lancaster Canal in order to ascertain what kind of activities people would like to get involved with along the canal.
This funding is one of 82 Catalyst heritage building fundraising capacity small grants recently awarded by HLF. These grants of between £3,000 and £10,000 are intended to help heritage groups across the UK build financial resilience by increasing fundraising capacity and encouraging more private giving. This programme forms part of a broader initiative between the Department of Culture Media and Sport, Arts Council England and HLF designed to diversify the income streams of arts and heritage organisations.
Photo: Lock on the Napton Flight, Oxford Canal (photo by Tim Lewis)
On Monday 5th May, the approach wall of Lock 10 of the Napton flight on the Oxford Canal partially collapsed into the waterway.
The collapse sent bricks and other debris into the canal, making navigation through the lock difficult. In response, CRT closed the canal between locks 8 and 14 to prevent further damage to the wall and to reduce the risk of injury and/or damage to boaters and boats. CRT was quick to begin work on the wall, aware of the popularity of the route the lock is situated on. Hire boat fleets often use the lock, so to minimise impact on these boaters hire boat companies and CRT were quick to work together to minimise the impact or hirers.
Engineers had the lock reopened by Friday 9th May, after the completion of temporary repairs. CRT staff remained on site to help boats through the lock with priority given to hire boaters on their return trip. The locks were closed at 7pm when CRT staff left.
The Napton flight may operate on restricted opening hours over the coming weeks due to on-going concerns over the structural integrity of the lock approach wall. This restriction would allow CRT staff to be on site to assist boaters through the lock and minimise the likelihood of further damage to the wall. CRT has said it will continue to review the situation and update the opening times as necessary, these can be found on the CRT website.
CRT believes the wall collapsed when a byweir outlet became blocked and caused water to build up behind the wall, the pressure of which caused the wall to fail. CRT have said it plans to make permanent repairs to the wall later in the year as part of the 2014/15 winter stoppages.
CRT has announced its initial list of Annual Public Meetings for 2014. The list can be viewed on CRT's website.
This section contains volunteer reports from IWA branches and IWA's Waterway Recovery Group (WRG). IWA branch reports contain information from their latest work parties where volunteers have worked to help maintain their local canals. WRG reports on its Canal Camps and weekend digs to keep readers up to date with the restoration work the group has been undertaking.
Photo: Steel Work at Weymoor Bridge (photo by Alan Lines)
From the 12th-21st April over twenty-five WRG volunteers spent nine days working on two different sites on the Cotswold Canals. One team of volunteers worked on the Weymoor Bridge Project. Weymoor Bridge once carried a bridleway over the Thames and Severn Canal but the bridge arch was demolished in the 1950s. Recently Cotswold Canals Trust gained planning permission for volunteers to rebuild the brick arch using the remaining abutments. WRG volunteers made significant progress over the camp, installing the steel arch which will be used to support the brick arch during the construction phase.
Another team of volunteers spent the camp clearing out Bowbridge Lock ready for restoration work to start in the summer. Work involved removal of vegetation, clearance of silt and mud as well as lowering water levels with a pump.
View photos of the volunteers in action.
WRG is running four summer canal camps at Bowbridge Lock – 5th-12th July; 9th-16th August; 16th-23rd August; 23rd-30th August. Work will include the removal of damaged brickwork and the installation of scaffolding into the lock chamber to allow for rebuilding work to be undertaken. Why not do something different this summer and volunteer with WRG!
Volunteers with IWA North Staffordshire & South Cheshire Branch and the Trent & Mersey Canal Society spent a lovely day working at Malkins Bank on the Cheshire Locks flight pf the Trent & Mersey Canal. Lock 64 had most of the metalwork painted, Lock 62 had the wood started, and the towpath bridge over the side-arm was tidied and painted as well.
Photo: Rubbish collected during Bridgwater & Taunton Canal May work party (photo by Bob Abbott)
It was another success story at IWA West Country Branch's Bridgwater work party on 3rd May with good weather and the help of twenty volunteers plus two CRT staff all there to tackle the littler along the Bridgwater & Taunton Canal. The volunteers split into four groups who started between bridges 6 and 7 and worked along the tow paths in all directions. Another four volunteers worked from the CRT motorised flat workboat. The volunteers collected about thirty black bags of rubbish, three bikes, five road cones, a new Aldi shopping trolley, plastic sheets, carpet underlay and some traffic safety barriers, which the group managed to return to their original work sites!
Photo: Embankment works by Lock 31 (photo by Greta Russell)
Over the last two years, IWA Warwickshire Branch has been clearing the vegetation and obstacles from the offside path between the locks in the middle of Hatton flight on the Grand Union Canal. The point has now been reached where it is necessary to pair back an embankment alongside the lock landing at lock 31 in order to restore a safe pathway.
In preparation for an assault on this section on Sunday 4th May, a CRT hopper was moved from the Hatton depot to the work site on the previous Friday evening. Before the hopper was moved, it was loaded up with supplies and equipment.
Sunday morning was bright, but with a cool wind, which helped with the heavy labour of removing the sticky clay from the embankment at lock 31. The clay was bagged and loaded onto the hopper, which was then transported to the other end of the pound, above lock 30. Here it was unloaded and spread over the rubble on the offside towpath. The rubble had been previously laid as a new towpath surface by earlier IWA work parties on parts of the path that had subsided. To prevent the embankment at lock 31 encroaching on the lock landing in the future, a retaining wall of posts was driven into a trench, which was then filled with concrete.
Pouring rain on Thursday 8th May meant that the planned work to continue painting the cast iron bridge at Hazelhurst Junction on the Caldon Canal could not take place. As a number of stalwart volunteers from IWA North Staffordshire & South Cheshire Branch and Caldon & Uttoxeter Canals Trust turned up despite the rain and the forecast, two useful alternative activities were found.
Firstly, a litter pick was carried out between Bridge 38 at Denford and Hazelhurst Junction, and along the Leek Arm as far as the aqueduct. A surprising amount of rubbish was found, for such a peaceful rural location, including discarded oil cans and other larger items. Following that a session was held clearing vegetation and preparing some ground for a new storage shed that will be used for the storing of work party tools.
Have a look at the list of volunteer opportunities within local IWA committees. There is a full list of volunteer opportunities within IWA branches.
IWA's Marketing Committee is looking to recruit new members over the coming year. Find out what this involves and how to express an interest.
The following IWA region and branch magazines have been added to the website since the last edition of the Bulletin:
Lichfield Branch - Lichfield Lines - Spring 2014
The following IWA region and branch magazines have been added in recent weeks:
Manchester Branch - Manchester Packet- March 2014
East Yorkshire Branch - Wolds Waters - April 2014
Lee & Stort Branch - Lee & Stort Recorder - April 2014
Warwickshire Branch - Bear Essentials - April 2014
Chiltern Branch - Grapevine - May 2014
Milton Keynes Branch - Towpath Telegraph - May 2014
South Yorkshire & Dukeries Branch - Keels & Cuckoos - May 2014
North Riding Branch - The Northern Navigation News - Spring 2014
Major IWA events in 2014
24th - 26th May 2014 -
6th - 8th June 2014 - IWA Campaign Festival, Chester
23rd - 25th August 2014 -
Branch Boating Events in 2014
27th - 29th June 2014 -
4th - 6th July 2014 - (IWA Lee & Stort Branch)
6th July 2014 - (IWA West Riding Branch)
6th - 7th September 2014 - Maesbury Canal Festival (joint arranged by IWA Shrewsbury, District & North Wales Branch along with Friends of the Montgomery Canal)
Have you got a waterway event or activity to promote? - Anyone can add details of a waterways event or activity to this area on the website. You don’t even need to register with the website or provide any sort of password. Simply use the upload event form.
16th May Work Party - Brindley Bank Rugeley (IWA Lichfield Branch)
17th May Work Party - Lapworth (supported by IWA Warwickshire Branch)
17th May Work Party - Trent & Mersey Canal (IWA North Staffordshire & South Cheshire Branch)
17th May Work Party - Manchester Bolton & Bury Canal (supported by IWA Manchester Branch)
21st May Work Party - River Gipping (supported by IWA Ipswich Branch)
28th May Work Party - River Gipping (supported by IWA Ipswich Branch)
28th May Work Party - Wardle Lock (IWA Shrewsbury & North Wales Branch and IWA North Staffordshire & South Cheshire Branch)
1st June Work Party - Northampton Arm (IWA Northampton Branch)
2nd June Work Party - Hatton Locks (supported by IWA Warwickshire Branch)
4th June Work Party - River Gipping (supported by IWA Ipswich Branch)
4th June Work Party - Hatton Locks (supported by IWA Warwickshire Branch)
7th June Work Party - River Gipping (supported by IWA Ipswich Branch)
7th June Work Party - Dee Branch, Chester (IWA Chester & Merseyside Branch)
7th June Work Party - Bridgwater & Taunton Canal (IWA West Country Branch)
7th-8th June Work Party Weekend - Tardebigge Lime Kilns (supported by IWA Birmingham, Black Country & Worcestershire Branch)
11th June Work Party - River Gipping (supported by IWA Ipswich Branch)
11th June Work Party - Staffordshire & Worcestershire Canal (supported by IWA Birmingham, Black Country & Worcestershire Branch)
12th June Himalayan Balsam Work Party - Caldon Canal, Cheddleton (IWA North Staffordshire & South Cheshire Branch)
17th June Work Party - Trent & Mersey Canal (IWA North Staffordshire & South Cheshire Branch)
18th June Work Party - River Gipping (supported by IWA Ipswich Branch)
19th June Work Party - Lapworth (supported by IWA Warwickshire Branch)
21st June Work Party - River Lee at Ware (IWA Lee & Stort Branch)
21st June Work Party - Lapworth (supported by IWA Warwickshire Branch)
21st June Work Party - Greater Manchester (supported by IWA Manchester Branch)
22nd June Himalayan Balsam Work Party - Caldon Canal (IWA North Staffordshire & South Cheshire Branch)
24th June Himalayan Balsam Work Party - Leicester (IWA Leicestershire Branch)
25th June Himalayan Balsam Evening Work Party - Caldon Canal (IWA North Staffordshire & South Cheshire Branch)
25th June Work Party - River Gipping (supported by IWA Ipswich Branch)
To advertise your restoration/cleanup events in the bulletin please add details to IWA's events calendar
18th May Walk - Alvecote (IWA Warwickshire Branch)
18th May Waterside Walk - London (IWA Towpath Walk Society)
22nd May Waterside Walk - Bunbury (IWA Chester & Merseyside Branch)
29th May Waterside Walk - Wey & Arun Canal (Wey & Arun Canal Trust)
1st June Waterside Walk - Mile End to Islington (IWA Towpath Walks Society)
3rd June Waterside Walk - Basingstoke Canal (Railway & Canal Historical Society)
8th June Waterside Walk - Ashby Canal (IWA Lichfield Branch)
15th June Waterside Walk - Little Venice to Camden (IWA Towpath Walks Society)
19th June Waterside Walk - Wey & Arun Canal (Wey & Arun Canal Trust)
To advertise your towpath walks in the Bulletin, please add details to IWA's events calendar
The following special offers are now available exclusively for IWA members:
Please note: All discounts and offers are entirely at the organisers' discretion.
To see details of how to take advantage of these offers, please go to www.waterways.org.uk/support_us/members_area/member_discounts_special_offers_public
For IWA members who receive a printed copy of this bulletin in the post, please contact the membership team on 01494 783453 for the details of the offers.
Members can also support IWA with a Narrow Boat magazine subscription
IWA has an arrangement with insurers Navigators & General and River Canal Rescue that provides top quality boat insurance and access to the basic waterway rescue service for boat owners, with the added benefit that every policy taken out and subsequently renewed helps IWA, and thus furthers our charitable work for the waterways.
See more information about the IWA insurance scheme for boaters
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