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Montgomery Canal Restoration Work Party Report - October 2013

October 19 + 20

Quite a month for news! The headline item as far as the present site is concerned is that the earth-moving in the channel is now finished. But it was a pretty close run thing!

Early arrivals on Saturday found a considerable amount of water in the channel despite some pumping having taken place during our visit the previous Tuesday (more of that later). The standing water combined with the weather (the forecast ‘occasional showers’ turned out to be ‘regular torrential downpours’!), meant that the work was more mud-shifting than earth-moving. The towpath slope was finished on Saturday despite a wiring problem on the digger which lost us a couple of hours. A frantic effort on Sunday saw the offside bank and the bottom of the channel finished just before knocking-off time. Also a permanent sump was constructed in the middle of the section in order to permit pumping out after the land-drains are finally covered up. Completion of this job means that the lining can now be completed during the November work party.

The lining gang pressed on and completed 21 m by mid Sunday morning before the supply of liner was exhausted. This leaves just 20 m to do next month to finish the whole length – another major landmark in the work.

The third major piece of work in the channel was grouting of the joint between the lining and the banks of the canal. The technique is to clear the joint of weeds and rubbish and then to use a bentonite grout to trap the lining material against the vertical bank surface. In total 130 m of this work was done – 70 m at the retaining wall and the remainder on the towpath side.

The other big news this month is, of course, the award of a First Round Heritage Lottery Fund grant to CRT for work on the Montgomery. This will be followed by a Second Round application which, if successful, will include funding for the Pryces Bridge to Crickheath section. To publicise this award the Society were asked to put on a special ‘work party’ for the benefit of the BBC's cameras. More details are available in the £160k HLF grant article in the News section.

 

IMGP1770a
Dragging spoil up the bank
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Lining in the foreground and the final area of profiling
Picture 011 (Medium)a
The final sump
Picture 014 (Medium)
Grouting
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