I SAW your article on the above [Stewponey Lock] and would like to say that all was not 'doom & gloom', writes Dudley Taylor.
We undertook a New Years cruise from the Shropshire Union to Kinver spending New Year in Kinver before returning.
Unaware of closure
We arrived below Stewponey Lock on our narrowboat 'Vagabond' early on the morning of 2nd January, unaware of the closure the day before.
Due to the Bank Holiday we were only able to contact the manager at Stewponey Wharf on 3rd January and explain our predicament that we had to return home and sitting out the main closure whilst the lock gate was removed for repair was hardly an option as we both had commitments back home.
With a great deal of effort by the Area Operations Manager at Stewponey Wharf and the West Midlands Area Reactive Team Manager and his team, a temporary repair was carried out on the afternoon of 3rd January to allow us to pass through the lock and return to our home mooring a couple of days later.
I believe the consideration given to ourselves as customers was exceptional and have made this point to the Canal & River Trust West Midlands Office.
We did not find any other problem on our nine day cruise and virtually had the canals to ourselves in exceptionally mild, dry conditions.
Apart from the final day on the Shroppie we counted the number of moving boats on one hand!