Rowers come before freight

Published: Friday, 23 April 2021

SO THE the boaters on the Lee & Stort think they've got problems with rowers taking over critical mooring sites, writes Jonathan Mosse.

Not wishing to detract from their very justifiable woes, I would ask your readers to spare a thought for 600 ton aggregate barges negotiating the Aire & Calder Navigation on the stretch above Lemonroyd Lock.

Massive launching pontoon

As the accompanying view from Google Earth* shows, a massive launching pontoon, serving six Leeds rowing clubs, has been placed in the canal just where loaded 180ft barges have to line up to enter Knostrop Lock. The space between the pontoon and the lock will also have to serve as a winding hole for the same craft using the soon-to-be-built wharf just 'downstream' at Stourton.

The point I'm making, common to both scenarios, is that while I commend CaRT for extending the enjoyment of their waterways to as wide a range of the population as possible, this should never be at the expense of their core function as a navigation authority enshrined, amongst other places, in the 1968 Transport Act.