Victor wonders about the spend

Published: Sunday, 31 January 2021

THOSE at Canal & River Trust's Ivory Towers are most ecstatic about its further spend of £190,000 on its 'customer service facility improvements' in London.

We boaters are to get lots of goodies, we are told, of new mooring rings together with water points, bin stores, and boater waste facilities.

They are certainly needed in the city where it is virtually impossible these days to get a mooring with so many using its waterways for cheap living.

But £190,000?  Sounds to me like a bit of an exaggeration for a couple of thousand quids' worth of trappings...

Laying down plans

Hold on. We are then informed that though the mooring rings will be installed by the end of the year, not so the other goodies.

Yes, my friends, for though CaRT is installing the promised extra mooring rings, it is 'laying down plans' and 'developing specifications' for the other goodies it promises.

Which reads—next year, sometime, never...

All in the design stage

Three stoppages too are being delayed, this time as they are all in the 'design stage'!

This seems to be the latest reason (excuse?) for not getting on with stoppages, for here we are told 'Have established a design at Whinnyfield Bridge on the Lancaster Canal'....'Engineers have prepared their design to the culvert by Bennet's Bridge on the Shropshire Union Canal'....'Our engineers are currently working on the design details to ensure the workforce can start as soon as the routes are established' on the breach on the Shropshire Union Canal.

Alas, no dates as to when the work will actually start, never mind when it will be eventually completed.

Do it right

So there's another case of 'water ingress' (CaRT's word for flooded electrics) on the Weaver as another flood swamps the control boxes, resulting of course in equipment having to be replaced and the Anderton Boat Lift and a swing bridge out of order until the work can be done.

Let's only hope that the equipment replaced is not the usual cheapest junk and the enclosures are IPX8 rated—to keep the water outand the work undertaken by someone with the 2391 certificate to test and inspect it periodically, instead of its usual slap-happy contractors who seem to know very little.

A Cartism?

A recent stoppage notice I reckon left quite a few boaters in a quandaryit telling that 30 miles and 15 locks of the Shroppie were out of use.

This we are supposedly reliably informed was caused by the breachsorry, forgot which one!

Digs deep

I always enjoy the articles from contributor Allan Richards, he digging deeply into matters that I for one do not have the stamina for!

He has really brought into the open the colossal number of days lost through the multitude of stoppages under the present regime, but more provocative the way the regime attempts to hide the real figures, something it is getting rather good at.

No apology

Definitely no apology from me for so much about the shenanigans of CaRT, that I think you will agree, are well deserved.

Victor Swift