IWA Bulletin October 2012

IWA News

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2012 Events

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Canal & River Trust and The Inland Waterways Association Sign Historic Agreement

Yesterday (27th September) IWA and the Canal & River Trust signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) at the Trust’s first Public Meeting, which was held at the canal-side Bond Warehouse in Birmingham. 

The agreement is designed to recognise the mutual interests of the two charitable organisations and establish areas of co-operation as well as outlining specific commitments and responsibilities.

Robin Evans, chief executive for Canal & River Trust, said: “We already work closely with IWA and this agreement both formalises and acts as a catalyst to that relationship.  By working together and building on each other’s skills and experience we will make a greater impact on the waterways and peoples’ enjoyment of them than either of our organisations could have done alone.

Clive Henderson, IWA's national chairman, said: "IWA sees that there are areas of shared interest with the Trust, where pooling our resources may help better engage with local communities to generate support from local people to care for and help maintain their local stretch of waterways, and hopefully open up new areas for fundraising".

Photo courtesy of Canal & River Trust


IWA News

IWA Annual General Meeting

IWA's 2012 Annual General Meeting was held at Chelmsford on 29th September. The formal resolution to approve the accounts, appoint auditors and trustees were all dealt with swiftly, allowing retiring national chairman Clive Henderson an opportunity to reflect on his years in office. The meeting recorded its thanks to Clive for his work as National Chairman over the last four years during which time a lot had been achieved. The meeting's proceedings were concluded with the presentation of the Association's National Awards for 2012 (see article below).

The result of the ballot for the nationally elected trustees was as follows:

John Butler: 196
Les Etheridge: 264
Clive Henderson: 264
Gillian Smith: 235

The three trustees elected were thus Les Etheridge, Clive Henderson and Gillian Smith.  A total of 367 members voted (from 263 memberships).  Alan Platt and Vaughan Welch were re-elected as chairmen of North West and West Midlands regions respectively, as sole nominees.  The only nominee for the post of South West Region Chairman had to withdraw owing to ill health, so nominations are due to be invited in the November edition of Waterways magazine.

Member's Pre-Meeting: As usual there was a pre-meeting held for those interested in the running of the Association. Presentations were made:


Recognition for IWA Waterway Campaigners at IWA AGM

The  Inland Waterways Association’s  fifty–third  AGM  held on Saturday 29th September 2012 at Chelmsford , brought recognition for a host of waterways campaigners.

  • The Cyril Styring Trophy, the IWA’s most prestigious award was made to Dr Roger Squires BEM in recognition of his long service to IWA as Deputy National Chairman, Chairman of Navigation Committee and Chairman for London Region and Trustee.
  • The Christopher Power Prize was awarded to Roger Harding for his restoration support work with the Stover Canal Society.
  • The John Heap Salver was awarded to Jerry Sanders for his long service and unstinting work as Commercial Director for IWA festivals.
  • The Branch Achievement Award this year went to IWA Warwickshire Branch for:
    • Well attended branch meetings with diversity of relevant and interesting speakers
    • Branch work parties and early initiatives to support the Canal & River Trust at Lapworth and on the Grand Union Canal 
    • Many individual members prominent on IWA national committees
    • Support for local events, such as Evesham and Stratford festivals
    • Branch newsletter, funded without any support from national funds
  • IWA Richard Bird Medals were awarded to Reece Jones, Di Jones, Alan Wiffen, Sandy Jones, Dave Jones, Stephen Scholes, Pat Barton, Bob Myall, Anne Myall, Bob Dewey, Liz Dewey, Brian Bayston, Edwina Wallace, Dave Chapman, Beryl Chapman and Ron Probert. Roger Harding and some of the Bird Medal winners were not at the AGM, so their awards are to be presented elsewhere..

See more information about awards


WRG Volunteers to Help Restore Bridges 79 & 80 on the North Oxford Canal

Volunteers from IWA's Waterway Recovery Group will be working alongside Canal and River Trust to help restore two historic accommodation bridges on the North Oxford Canal near Barby, Northamptonshire from the 5th-15th October. Bridges 79 and 80, built back in the 1770s, have slowly fallen into a state of disrepair and WRG volunteers hope to use their heritage restoration skills to restore these bridges back to their former glory. The main aim of this project is to improve working relations with Canal and River Trust, and develop a suitable framework allowing other volunteers to work on more technical projects with the Trust in the future and demonstrate what volunteers can do. At the end of the project the Trust and WRG will work together to create the handbook ‘Volunteers Guide to Bridge Restoration ‘so that other volunteers can take on similar projects in their local area.

On Friday 5th October, WRG Volunteers will take over from contractors, May Gurney, who have been working to stabilise the bridges, and for the next 10 days 14 volunteers will spend time repairing damaged brickwork, repointing joints and reinstating coping stones.

For more details or to arrange a site visit please contact Jenny Black jenny.black@waterways.org.uk or call 01494 783 453 ext 604.


IWA Restoration Assessment Schedule

The Restoration Assessment Schedule has been developed for restoration trusts and societies to highlight all of the necessary steps required to restore a derelict waterway to navigation. It will not be applicable in its entirety to all restoration projects, but should serve as a useful template for organisations attempting to identify the key stages and activities to successfully progress a restoration. It will help them to review their strategy and establish tactical plans to ensure they focus their limited resources logically and effectively. It covers the process in six milestone documents from initial identification and assessment through to post-restoration long term sustainability. This schedule is one of many tools that the IWA's Restoration Committee provides to support restoration activities and is now available on IWA's website.



IWA Branch and Region Magazines

The following IWA region and branch magazines have been added to the website since the last (mid-September edition of the Bulletin:

Chelmsford - Newsletter - October 2012
Stoke-on-Trent Branch - Knobsticks - Autumn 2012

The following IWA region and branch magazines have also been added in recent weeks:

East Midlands Region - Aegre - September 2012
South East Region - Cargoes - Autumn 2012

Chiltern Branch - Chiltern Grapevine - Autumn 2012
Ipswich Branch - Anglian Cuttings - Autumn 2012
Lee & Stort Branch - Recorder - September 2012
Leicestershire Branch - Winding Ways - September 2012
Manchester - Manchester Packet - September 2012
Milton Keynes Branch - Towpath Telegraph - September 2012
North & East London / South London branches - Meridian Cuttings - September 2012
Warwickshire Branch - Bear Essentials - September 2012

2014 Calendar Competition

Photos have been submitted for the 2014 IWA Calendar competition and are available to view online in our gallery of competition entries.

We are offering three free calendars to the photographers whose photos are used in the final calendar. Photos for the Calendar need to be digital with a resolution of at least 300 DPI and at least 2100 pixels x 1500 pixels (can be landscape or portrait). You can usually adjust the settings on your digital camera to take high resolution photos.

Photos for the competition need to be submitted by 31st January 2013. The photos will then be shortlisted and then put to a public vote.

See more information on the calendar competition and uploading photos



IWA Volunteering Opportunities

Have a look at the list of volunteer opportunities within local IWA committees. There is a full list of volunteer opportunities within IWA branches at: www.waterways.org.uk/about/vacancies/vacancies


Other News

Trent & Mersey Canal Breach
Following heavy rainfall the Trent and Mersey Canal suffered a breach at Dutton Hollow, near Preston Brook between Middlewich Big Lock 75 and Bridge 213. Significant damage was done to a supporting embankment at Croxton Flash near Middlewich.

In response, CRT has installed temporary dams and stop planks at a number of locations throughout the affected area including at Bridges 174 (Croxton Aqueduct), 181, Bartington Wharf and Bridge 213. The Flood gates at Marbury and Wincham have been closed and locked shut too.
CRT's engineering teams have surveyed the damage and estimated the repair at Croxton Flash will take a number of weeks to complete before the canal there can be reopened. The breach at Dutton Hollow is likely to take longer to repair.

The repair bill has been estimated at £1.5 million and whilst CRT hold a contingency fund that can be used to deal with this kind of emergency situation, it is money that also needs to be spent on essential maintenance and repairs across the network.

CRT has launched an appeal for donations to help fund the repairs. Donations of £5 can be made by texting 'BREACH' to 70800. You will be charged £5 plus one message at your standard network rate. CRT will recieve a donation of at least £4.97 from all major networks of your £5. By using this service you agree that CRT may contact you in the future. If you would rather they didn't, text DECLINE to 70007.

See Trent & Mersey photos by Derek Quillam

PLA Safety Bulletin for Narrowboat Users on the Tidal Thames

The Port of London Authority issued a safety bulletin in response to the sinking of a narrow boat in Limehouse Reach.

On the 24th August a narrow boat was delivered by road to South Dock Marina in London for a
new owner. The vessel was lifted into the dock and the new owner requested to lock out of the
marina as they had an overnight berth in Limehouse Marina; a short distance up the River Thames.  The vessel departed the lock at 17:00 with 5 adults and 1 dog aboard. The vessel transited directly across the river to the starboard side of the channel and then turned upriver towards Limehouse Marina.

Shortly into their transit the crew noted a change in the engine note and opened the engine room hatch to find the engine half submerged. All persons quickly moved to the stern to try and bail out the engine room, but were unable to cope with the ingress of water into the vessel. The engine room continued to fill with water and flooded into the main cabin, submerging the aft coaming below the water, resulting in severe flooding of the vessel which sank within 10 seconds. All of the crew and the dog entered the water without lifejackets, but were rescued by a nearby RIB and Police Launch.

Safety Lessons: The hull of the vessel had been completely double plated and the increased weight of this plating had resulted in a reduced safety clearance; with the bottom of the engine room vent being positioned approximately 65mm above the waterline. With 3 persons positioned on the aft deck the bottom of the engine room air vent became submerged beneath the waterline by 50mm, the resulting downflooding and sinking of the vessel was inevitable.

The following safety lessons should be carefully considered by narrowboat owners before venturing onto the tidal Thames.

  1. The tidal Thames is considered to be a Category C waterway, where wave heights of up to 1.2m may be encountered and vessels should be suitably prepared to meet these conditions.
  2. Through hull fittings, vents and exhaust outlets should be positioned as high up as practicable on narrowboats to meet the conditions likely to be encountered. Where through hull fittings, vents and exhaust outlets cannot be moved to a safe location consideration should be given as to whether the vessel is suitable to navigate on the tidal Thames.
  3. Where modifications have been made to a vessel, such as the extensive use of double plating, it is important to check that sufficient safety clearance remains for the vessel to safely navigate in the intended waterway.
  4. Lifejackets and other safety equipment should always be provided on board vessels navigating on the tidal Thames and it is strongly recommended that Lifejackets are worn at all times when on deck.
  5. When purchasing a vessel it is essential to have a pre-purchase survey undertaken by a competent surveyor ensuring the surveyor is aware of your intended use of the vessel

CRT Waterway Maintenance Plans

John Dodwell, a CRT Trustee and long-time IWA member, gave a speech on 26th September 2012 to the Water Recreation Division of the Sport & Recreation Alliance covering funding, governance, charitable activities, achievements and the future.

In his speech he announced that £4m has been allocated to improve water supply and 50m will be allocated for the winter maintenance programme.

CRT will focus funding on some areas where water can be scarce – such as the Kennet & Avon Canal, the Leeds & Liverpool Canal and the canals around Braunston.

The Trust plans to undertake a similar restoration and repair programme this winter to last winter where BW replaced a little under 200 hand crafted lock gates. Details are to be announced soon.

The Trust has also taken on 22 new apprentices – 2 in each of their 11 waterways areas; mainly in the joinery and bricklaying trades to help keep the heritage skills on the waterways alive.

More dredging is also being planned.

The full speech can be downloaded from the Useful Downloads section on CRT's Website

Irish Marine Federation Makes Representations on 'Green Diesel'

The Irish Marine Federation (IMF) has made representations to the Revenue Commissioners in relation to a proposed ban on the use of so called 'Green Diesel', (or Red Diesel in Northern Ireland) for leisure boats pointing out difficulties changes would impose on the boating industry in general.

Ireland, like the UK, has had a differential pricing system for auto fuels, with higher taxes and hence retail prices for fuels used in road vehicles.

The best-known example is the price differential on green diesel, about 90c per litre cheaper than road diesel and available to boaters, farmers and other users of diesel-powered vehicles.

Green diesel is almost identical to ordinary auto-diesel apart from the dye which is added.

The IMF has also made a separate budget submission through the Irish Tourist Industry Confederation (ITIC) asking that if the change to white diesel is enforced by the EU that the VAT rate of 13.5% be imposed on this fuel as opposed to the 23% attached to white diesel. This would have a neutral effect on Revenue and would mean a smaller increase in the cost of fuel for boat owners say the Federation.

IWA Member Discounts and Special Offers

The following special offers are now available exclusively for IWA members:

  • Boatshed Grand Union - 10% discount on brokerage
  • Channel Glaze - 10% discount on double glazing for boats
  • Cotswold Outdoor - 10% discount
  • Europcar - Special hire rates to IWA members
  • IceGrippers - 20% discount until December 2012  **New**
  • Guildford Boat House- 20% discount
  • Grand Union Diesel Services - 5% discount
  • Lee Sanitation Ltd. - 10% on orders over £100
  • Midland Chandlers - 5% discount
  • Narrowboat Services - 10% discount
  • River Canal Rescue - up to 20% discount
  • RoadPro - 5% discount
  • UK Boat Hire - 15% discount on 2012 holidays
  • 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 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 NarrowBoat subscription


2012 Waterway Events

WRG Reunion Weekend 2012 - 10th to 11th November
(accommodaton available from Friday evening)
Location: Herefordshire and Gloucestershire Canal
cost: £13 

The annual get-together for 100+ volunteers, hopefully bringing together first-timers from this year's camps, old hands and regulars from all of WRG and other regional volunteer groups for a major scrub bashing and big party on the Saturday evening.

This year we will be holding the weekend on the Herefordshire and Gloucestershire Canal after a successful Easter Camp which saw 275 metres of new canal created by WRGies in just two weeks - see photos here. The plan for the weekend is to clear around a mile of canal, thick with trees and vegetation in preparation for excavation and towpath work in 2013. There will also be work for WRG Forestry and the possibility of some machine work.

For more information and to book please see WRG's pages on the website


Boaters Invited to Join Dunsfold Canal Rally

With the recent re-opening of the restored section of canal in Alfold, Surrey, The Wey & Arun Canal Trust (WACT) will be holding a small boats rally on Saturday 27 October.  Owners of canoes, kayaks and dinghies will be able to get a close-up view of the recently restored stretch near Dunsfold Park, between Compasses Bridge and Fast Bridge on the A281.

The aim of this event is to use the new stretch of canal and welcome visitors to see what the Trust has achieved” says WACT’s rally organiser John Taylor Cram. John also organises other similar events each year to maintain navigation rights. 

The Boat Rally will start at 11am from Compasses Bridge, and be open to members of the public until 1.30pm.  Entry details can be found at www.weyandarun.co.uk


Banbury Canal Day - 7th October

Attractions will include live music, stories, theatre and even Punch and Judy. There will also be a boat taxi service and boat trips run by IWA Oxfordshire Branch members, rides on the vintage double decker bus, continental market and varied craft, trader and charity stalls. There will be a 6 hour free folk concert, dancing and the Morris Dance teams.

Visit the official Banbury Canal Day website.

Some dates for your diary for autumn 2012:

Banbury Canal Day - Oxfordshire 7th October
Stourbridge Navigation Trust - Open Weekend - West Midlands 20th - 21st October
Dunsfold Canal Rally - Surrey 27th October
BCN Society Bonfire Rally - West Midlands 4th - 5th November

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.

See IWA's Events Calendar for 2012 and 2013 waterway events. You can also search by event type or find out what's going in on your area with the map search.


Upcoming Volunteer/Clean-up Events

12th-15th October - Stover Canal (WRG BITM)
Details: Installation of concrete pad and raised access gantry to bring towpath through the obstruction, to enable public access to the canal.
Contact: bookings@wrgbitm.org.uk

13th October - Stourbridge Canal Litter Pick (Stourbridge Navigation Trust and IWA's Birmingham Black Country and Worcestershire Branch)
Details: A litter pick to tidy up the area around Stourbridge Basin ahead of the Stourbridge 50 event the following weekend.  Meet at the Bonded Warehouse at 10.00 a.m.
Contact: sk63@btinternet.com

13th-14th October - Dukinfield Junction (IWA's Manchester Branch)
Details: Celebrate the 40th Anniversary of Ashtac by joining this "BCN Style" clean up, working from Dukinfield Junction in all three directions on the Ashton Canal, the lower Peak Forest Canal and the Huddersfield Narrow Canal. Bring your own lunch, or refreshments available from the Bridge View Café adjacent to Portland Basin Museum. You are advised to wear stout footwear and bring waterproofs in case of rain. All tools will be provided. For volunteers from further afield wishing to make a weekend of it, basic WRG-style accommodation is being arranged.
Contact: alison.smedley@waterways.org.uk

18th October - Work Party - Lapworth - Stratford Canal (IWA Warwickshire Branch)
Details: Regular twice monthly work party at Lapworth. Tasks vary each time but include lock painting, litter picking, veg clearance and path work. Work parties take place on the third Thursday and the third Saturday of each month.
Contact: alison.smedley@waterways.org.uk

20th October - Cheshire Locks Work Party (IWA's Stoke-on-Trent Branch)
Details: Monthly work party organised by IWA's Stoke-on-Trent Branch as part of the Cheshire Locks Project.  Tasks will include vegetation management, clearing cobble setts, painting fences, balance beams and bollards. No experience necessary, all tools provided. Bring waterproofs and a packed lunch, and wear stout shoes.
Contact: alison.smedley@waterways.org.uk

20th October - Work Party - Lapworth - Stratford Canal (IWA Warwickshire Branch)
Details: Regular twice monthly work party at Lapworth. Tasks vary each time but include lock painting, litter picking, veg clearance and path work. Work parties take place on the third Thursday and the third Saturday of each month.
Contact: alison.smedley@waterways.org.uk

20th - 21st October - Clean Up, Grand Union Canal, Fenny Stratford to Leighton Buzzard (IWA's Milton Keynes Branch)
Details: A two-day event supported by Canal & River Trust and sponsored by Wyvern Shipping. Heading south from Fenny Stratford, through 3 Locks and Leighton Buzzard to Grove Lock.
Contact: davidjsking@talktalk.net#

28th October - Canal Clean Up - Tinsley, Sheffield (IWA South Yorkshire Branch)
Details: All volunteers advised to wear suitable footwear and have waterproofs with them. Gloves, litter pickers and bags are provided by the Canal and River Trust. Pie and peas available at the end (approx. 1pm) if pre-ordered by 15th October.
Contact: Mavis Paul, landline 0114 2683927, mobile 07725 464611 or by email mavis.brian_paul@btinternet.com

To advertise your restoration/cleanup events in the bulletin please add details to IWA's events calendar http://www.waterways.org.uk/iwa_calendar/


Upcoming Towpath Walks

4th October - Norbury Junction (IWA's Lichfield Branch)
Details: Morning Walk at Norbury Junction.  A circular walk of about 3 miles from Norbury Junction on the Shropshire Union Canal, taking in the canal towpath to Loynton Moss Nature Reserve and then return across the surrounding fields to Norbury Junction, where an optional lunch is available.  Meet at Norbury Wharf (Post Code: ST20 0PN) at 10.15am for 10.30am start.  Ground level is easy with no stiles, but can be muddy in places so strong shoes/walking boots are advisable.  Dogs are welcome but must be on a lead at all times. 
Contact: Kaye Harrison on 07973 281728 or email kaye.harrison@waterways.org.uk

16th October - Grand Union Canal, Warwickshire (IWA's Warwickshire Branch)
Details: A walk down Knowle Locks to the Black Boy pub and back.
Contact: info.warwickshire@waterways.org.uk

24th October - Canal Heritage Walk - Macclesfield Canal (Bollington Walking Fest)
Details: Three mile circular walk including Macclesfield Canal through Bollington, bridges 26 to 29, with historical commentary, and the Middlewood Way - route mostly level. Meet at Bollington Library, Palmerston Street (close to aqueduct) for 10:00am start, back by about midday. This walk is part of the 2012 Bollington Walking Festival. Everyone welcome. Dogs on leads please.
Contact: tim@happy-valley.org.uk

To advertise your towpath walks in the Bulletin, please add details to IWA's events calendar http://www.waterways.org.uk/iwa_calendar/


Contact Us

IWA Head Office, Island House, Moor Road, Chesham, HP5 1WA

01494 783 453


Bulletin is edited by Gemma Bolton