Sudden flooding of the Soar

Published: Monday, 22 June 2020

I was extremely interested to read your report that Canal & River Trust had finally decided to close the Soar navigation, writes William Forbes.

Though I sold our narrowboat two years ago that was moored on the Soar as its ever increasing expense proved too much, I well remember the dangers of the river that you so rightly pointed out, having been caught numerous times by its sudden flooding.

Sit tight above a lock

It can come up overnight as many have experienced, and the best thing is to sit tight above a lock and hope it goes down, but if the flow is strong, as the Canal & River Trust told us, then with further rain forecast, as it was, the river should be closed. There are no two ways about it, it is dangerous, as I have known five boats on the banks in the river in flood conditions in the seven years and there is no way you can proceed with care as it told us, you just get taken in the flood as we have been, but luckily the boat survived.

Having said all that I have to admit that the Soar is a beautiful river and we have had some delightful times on it over the years and not often going above King's Lock have not suffered from any stoppages that seem to plague that section of the Leicester Arm.