Found the Stratford-upon-Avon an absolute delight

Published: Thursday, 24 June 2021

HAVING read the article concerning the Stratford-upon-Avon Canal being ‘a disgrace’—I felt moved to respond, writes Andrew G Fall.

Far from being a disgrace, we found the Stratford-upon-Avon Canal to be an absolute delight. It has been seven years since my wife and I last cruised this canal and I had quite forgotten how lovely it is.

Good facilities

We joined the canal at Lapworth and used the good boater’s facilities provided before setting off on our journey south. We stopped on good moorings at Lowsonford, Wootton Wawen and south of Wilmcote Locks before making our way into Stratford-upon-Avon where we are now.

Yes, there were a couple of locks with a paddle not working. That just meant that those locks took a little longer to fillhardly the end of the world. With plenty of water flowing down the locks there were no problems with water levels anywhere.

Strangely, we did speak to a CRT chap at Lock 54 who told us that he had been called out by the crew of a hire boat reporting low water in one of the poundsthere was absolutely no low water level to be found in any of the pounds, which was a bit of a mystery.

Quite hard to open and close

It is fairly unusual for so many locks to have single bottom gates and they are quite hard to open and close. Also some of the paddles on those locks, particularly south of Wilmcote are quite difficult to raise. Lock 53 with it’s bent balance beam is an issue and I wonder how some people manage it to be honest. I wonder if it would ever be possible for that lock to be electrifiedprohibitively expensive I should imagine!

Lock 53 aside and in conclusion, I hope the article referred to doesn’t put people offwe found the Stratford-upon-Avon Canal a joy!