Sewage plant discharge killed the fish in the canals

Published: Wednesday, 29 April 2009
IT HAS been discovered that it was a discharge from a Severn Trent Water sewage plant that was responsible for thousands of dead fish in eight miles of the Shropshire Union and Staffs & Worcester canals, Alan Tilbury reports.

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Re: Boater's perspective of the Liverpool Link

Published: Thursday, 23 April 2009
Great article, thoroughly enjoyed it.I shipped out of those docks many a time in the late 50's early 60's while in the Merchant Navy. It certainly has changed - the only part I readily recognise is the Jesses Hartley Clock Tower. I wonder if Mabel's Bar is still there ?? I still bear the scars ! Roy

Canalside housing

Published: Thursday, 23 April 2009

ELEVATE, the housing market renewal for Pennine Lancashire, has earmarked over £9 millions of Government funding to regenerate housing in Pendle, much by the side of the Leeds & Liverpool Canal.

How the money should be spent is now being discussed, with much of it going towards canalside development on the Brierfield Canal Corridor site.

Anglers causing swan casualties

Published: Wednesday, 22 April 2009
A WILDLIFE charity is appealing for anglers to take more care after seeing a sharp rise in swan casualties caused by discarded fishing tackle.

Volunteers and veterinary surgeons at the Yorkshire Swan Rescue Hospital, based at Brandsby, near York, have seen 27 swans injured so far this month as a result of dumped fishermen’s lines and hooks in the Ouse.

The same problem as been found on the Selby Canal with fishing lines and hooks discarded by anglers.

The charity workers had to launch their rescue boat for a third time in a week on the Ouse last Friday when they were alerted to a severely injured nesting swan near to Naburn Lock.

The swan was found suffering with a triple-barbed fishing lure lodged in its neck, and line wrapped tightly around its wings and feet. It was treated on the banks of the Ouse and was later returned to it’s waiting mate and eggs.

Boost for Foxton Inclined Plane

Published: Wednesday, 22 April 2009
THE East Midlands Development Agency (EMDA) has approved the application for the 'Foxton Locks Boat Lift (Masterplanning) 2008-11' project, which follows the successful first stage of the restoration of the defunct inclined plane at Foxton Locks.

This project will undertake the development work needed to test the feasibility of rebuilding a working Inclined Plane. This, it is believed, would provide a landmark attraction of national importance and aim to increase annual visitor numbers to half a million by 2016.

James Clifton, Regeneration Manager at British Waterways enthused:

"We are delighted that the study is to be supported. Assuming that we have a positive result and get over the relevant hurdles, the project could commence on site in five years and be delivered in two more."

Grand Union towpath collapses

Published: Monday, 20 April 2009
THERE was an urgent call to British Waterways on Saturday when a deep hole appeared in the towpath of the Grand Union Canal at Blisworth.

A team of engineers inspected the site, which was then fenced off from the public, though passage is still possible, and we are told the hole will be filled in during the week. The navigation is not affected.

Extending Barnoldswick marina

Published: Monday, 20 April 2009

WORK is well under way on expanding Lower Park Marina, at Barnoldswick on the Leeds & Liverpool Canal from its present capacity of 15 to 50.

This is due to open in June, with berths for wide beam as well as narrowboats, with electricity and water points on the jetties, with ample parking.

Planning permission was granted way back in 2002, but explains Manager Wayne King:

“We got planning permission for the expansion back in 2002 but we suffered a series of set-backs and had to raise enough money for the build. We also intend to put in hawthorn hedges interspersed with trees, which we are hoping will look really nice when it is finished."

The marina will not however accommodate residentials.

Worries about Cemex plant polluting the Avon

Published: Monday, 20 April 2009
CEMEX, the company that was supposed to use the Severn and a wharf in Gloucester to move aggregate, but didn't, is under fire for its plans to erect a waste processing plant by the Avon.

Roy Sandison of the Green Party has described the plans to build the plant next to the river as ‘sheer madness’ and that if the plans get the go ahead it could mean that the Avon becomes ‘one of the most polluted rivers in the country'.

He believes that every town and village downstream of the plant, including Evesham, Pershore, Bidford and Tewkesbury, will feel the effects in terms of the river’s cleanliness, flooding, tourism factors and the health of wildlife, stating:

“This is a disaster waiting to happen, whereby communities along the river, wildlife and also national tourist attractions across Warwickshire, Worcestershire and beyond, face the real danger of our historic Avon becoming one of the most polluted in the country.

“We are also very concerned that water taken from the Avon for drinking could also become contaminated.”

However, Cemex refuted the allegations of the plant causing pollution stating that the scheme would be good for the environment.

The proposals are to build a plant to turn rubbish into fuel for the Cemex cement plant, and will go before Warwickshire County Council later this year.

Ideal for motorcyclists

Published: Friday, 17 April 2009

THOUGH the upgrading of towpaths is for the use of walkers and cyclists only, many motorcyclists use them, with those with the unlicenced mini motor bikes finding them ideal.

With one enjoying the  upgraded towpath, as Ralph Freeman's picture taken at Curdworth Top Lock on the Birmingham & Fazeley shows.

Unsafe boatyard case adjourned

Published: Friday, 17 April 2009

THE case of a boat building company Fairline, charged with two breaches of health and safety has been adjourned.

The company is charged with failing to organise its boatyard at Nene Park site in a way which pedestrians and vehicles could move in a safe manner, and also failing to ensure a sufficient assessment of health and safety risks relating to the movement of vehicles and pedestrians was in place.

The were brought by the Health & Safety Executive after an employee was dragged under a forklift truck that was being driven across the site by a cleaning contractor in December 2007.

At the hearing this week the magistrates adjourned the case until the 3rd June when it will be heard at Northampton. The maximum fine the company could receive is £5,000 per charge.