Victor: What a difference

Published: Sunday, 25 October 2020

IT TAKES some believing that workers can drop a gate in a lock, then walk away leaving boaters stranded for over a week.

But we all now know it happened, putting Atherstone Flight on the Coventry out of action—and there is no knowing how long it will be unusable.

As some of you may remember it was at this flight where we were once held up, way back in 1999, but no butter-fingered British Waterways workers dropping lock gates, so we were all away after a day and half.

Perhaps I should have a run over to Atherstone on Tuesday and hear what the boaters have to say about the current stoppage...

blisworthBooking through broad tunnels?

I see that from the 2nd November, boaters will be able to book various passages online, including Braunston Tunnel, Saddington Tunnel and Blisworth Tunnel on the Grand Union. Of Blisworth Tunnel (pictured) CaRT tells—'the longest wide, freely navigable tunnel in Europe (it’s wide enough for two narrowboats to pass in opposite directions).

What is CaRT up to now?  All three are broad tunnels allowing boats to easily pass—simply a matter of slowing down and keeping up to the right hand wall. The information came in a Press Release, not one of those somewhat strange Stoppage Notices where mistakes are only too frequent.

Surely it is not going to make them alternate one-way only?  This will make it impossible for hirers not being able to judge where they will be at any particular time, and not too handy for owners either. And with such availability allowing only certain times and days, near impossible to calculate.

We can only hope it's a mistake.  The information given to the Press people by someone who does not know and not checked.

The best yet!

Referring to stoppage notices, CaRT have the best one yet.

It tells that contractors on behalf of Severn Trent will refurbish the three water mains crossing the Anson Branch (off the Walsall Canal) either side of Bentley Lane Bridge with access from scaffolds.

It advises boaters that the 'navigation will remain open', but to take extra care when passing through the work area.

So it tells us that a navigation is open—that was abandoned in 1961!  Good, eh?

Straying from it's purpose

I see the National Trust could face an official investigation by the charity regulator for straying from its 'clear, simple purpose' to preserve historic buildings and treasures...

Can you think of another charity that is straying from its 'clear, simple purpose'...?

It is a charity

There has been some doubts voiced concerning the charitable status of Canal & River Trust.  Yet it is the work of moments to access the Charity Commission web page to find out.

This tells it is indeed a charity, number 1146792, with a listed income of £210,000,000.  So now you know.

Victor Swift