How long will it last?

Published: Monday, 25 September 2023

IT WAS Victor in his article on our recent cruise that brought to light the condition of Branston Lock.

BranstonLockThis narrow lock near Burton-on-Trent on the Trent & Mersey Canal was shown with its top gate beam bodged with timber and its collar completely adrift.

A leak somewhere

As it took some time to fill the lock with water to open the gate, it can only be taken there was a leak somewhere, with our hope, as this was our outward journey, it would not get worse!

But alas it did, for when we arrived at the lock another boat pulled up behind with the boater telling that there were four boats attempting to get through the evening before, but all had reversed back to moor as no one could get the top gate to open.

We waited well over 20 minutes, continually attempting to open the top gate, but the water just would not level to allow it. Even with three of us.

BrnanstonRopeIt was way back in the days of British Waterways when we first cruised the Huddersfield Narrow, that we were told that when we arrived at a particular lock to ring the number we were given, which we did, with a fella soon arriving.

Gate pulled open

He told us there was no way the top gate could be opened so instructed us to come forward with the boat, at which he took our bow rope and tied it to the lock and told us to reverse—with the gate finally pulled open.

So this is exactly what we did at Branston lock, with the gate pulled open, and the fella behind taking notice!

As to whether this has been attended to, we have no idea, as no stoppage notice has been issued.