Victor finds it looking worse for Crick access

Published: Sunday, 01 August 2021

THE news on the problem at Lime Kiln Lock is that it is 'now a full stoppage and the lock is closed'.

So together with the misinformation concerning the other Leicester Section lock at Ratcliffe, things are not looking too good for boaters' access to Crick Show at the end of the month.

For we all know the meaning of such dreaded statement as 'working in the background drawing up plans' (Ratcliffe) and 'to try and carry out temporary repairs' (Lime Kiln).

But, my friends, the contractors repairing Lime Kiln on the Leicester Section have hit a problem, hence its closure. At first it was a 'proceed with care' after the usual temporary repair, that, surprise, surprise was temporary indeed, with the lock now closed and a promised opening sometime in August.

At least we are told—wait for it—'This will now be escalated to our maintenance team, as it will need their skill set and equipment to complete these required repairs'.

Skill? Eh?

RedhilJuly21Nowhere to moor

For those boaters being turned back from Ratcliffe Lock up river from the Trent there is the added problem of no moorings.

For as per usual all those at Redhill are taken up with the usual very static boats as I have previously remarked.  Now we have the added bonus of a permanent couple on trade plates, but with only a couple of numbers showing.  These being just beyond the bridge in the photograph.  Those shown are either unlicenced or out of date.

Being a river, there is no bank mooring, and even back on the Trent spaces are at a premium, as we discovered last Tuesday, having to go right back up Sawley lock to moor.

Oxford Canal locked overnight

It had to come of course, the many leaking gates see to that, and so the Oxford is now under restrictions, starting at Claydon Flight, that will be padlocked overnight to save the wet stuff.

Then comes the instructions. The sensible one—'[for] boaters to make sure that all gates and paddles are closed after use' (sensible enough). Then the daft instruction—'sharing a lock if possible and waiting for oncoming boats'.

On a narrow lock waterway!

Pantomime season already

At first it was vandalism we were told that stopped the pump-out working at Castleford Services, so the damage had to be assessed back on the 16th of July.

Four days later, the 20th, it was discovered that an electric box had failed and so was replaced ten days after that, the 30th, yesterday.

Then on this same day notice that it had packed up again, so still no pump-out!  So two weeks and the somewhat infamous contractors still do not get the electrics working.

Perhaps they should blame vandals again!

The show must go on

On with the pantomime—this time on the Kennet & Avon, where 'our contractors and we are mobilising equipment to site to facilitate a repair'.

Just one slight problem—it was discovered there is no boat crane available on the waterway capable of lifting the damaged gate on Southcote Lock!

One could be transported by road, but it would need a crane to get it off the lorry into the water to get to the lock, but the crane is on the lorry! Another problem is that it would need a permit to travel on the roads.

So here's hoping, but this is what comes of CaRT flogging-off its equipment.

Victor Swift