Montgomery Canal Restoration Work Party Reports - 2006, Newhouse
What a start to the year! We had to postpone the scheduled March work party due to bad weather and held it two weeks later, not much warmer but safer travelling! This left only 2 weeks before the bumper 4 day April work party.
With the opening of Newhouse now scheduled for June 25th to coincide with the Dinghy Dawdle, (which will be the first use of the lock for seventy something years) the pressure is on to finish in time. This was the reason for the four day work party this month. The support was outstanding and all the tasks were ticked off as the weekend progressed. A volunteer who has recently undergone a gruelling week-long chainsaw training course put her skills to good use. The felled trees were later installed as fender poles below the lock.
March 31 - April 03
The April workparty was extended by two days to cover the Friday and Monday so that we could be more confident of having the restoration work completed in time for the official opening on 26th June.
There was a very good turnout of volunteers and an enormous amount of work was carried out. The remaining brickwork to the spill weir and the bridge parapet was finished, the towpath has been reinstated below the lock and made up with hardcore between retaining timbers and some final hedge cutting and planting was done. Several of the party had the unenviable task of clearing the mouth of the lock of the mud and debris that had been used to make a dam and getting it into a place where it could be lifted out by digger. All in all a very good weekend of very hard work and everyone was rewarded on the Monday when the gates were installed and the cabins removed from the site which has really transformed it. As usual British Waterways were extremely co-operative which made a great deal of difference to the amount of work achieved.
clearing the debris from the lock mouth
Laying the final bricks on the bridge parapet
The final brick of the spill weir
April 29 + 30 + May 01
Well we must be nearing the end with brooms and paint brushes being used!
The three days went exceptionally well, with all tasks being completed as far as we could and some preparatory work undertaken to make the next (and last) time a little less stressful, for me at least!
The hiccup of the weekend, and there is always one, was not having received the listed building consent in time to allow British Waterways to install the foundations for the new retaining wall adjoining the bridge. We have it verbally now, so will have to build the wall next time. Not a big problem in the grand scheme of things but it will make the last work party a little fraught if the weather is unkind - character building stuff.
The last work party before the GRAND OPENING will consist of cleaning brickwork, laying a new towpath beside the lock, the aforementioned retaining wall and laying the last of the turf. Plus any last minute tidying and painting.
June - No report found
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