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About Heartland

  • Birthday 06/25/1949

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    Stechford, Birmingham, West Midlands
  • Interests
    Industrial Archeology
    Folk Music

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  • Occupation
    Industrial Historian and author

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  1. The CRT message is very clear, boats not to move unless necessary. It is quite understandable through the current pandemic. Yet with traffic at a minimal, what effect will there be on the canals? There is the positive aspect of reduced bank erosion and the day to day wear and and tear at places such as locks. Yet on the negative side the flow may be reduced leading to possible pollution concerns. Then there is the Anderton Lift, with no use, will there be any mechanical issues, once it is used again? On a related point, will the CRT use the opportunity, whilst complying with the current rules, to still carry out maintenance ?
  2. This is a very responsible attitude by the Avon Trust, in the light of the serious floods there and the Covid epidemic. Who will follow next with this policy, I wonder.
  3. Yes, The report does show there are issues that CRT must address, and yes their report did not truly reflect the 22 recommendations by David Balmforth. Should the CRT re focus on its responsibilities and duties and not continue to wander into the tangential worlds that often accompany Trusts where all forms of diverse issues are brought into the fold distracting from a principal purpose of running and maintaining the waterway.
  4. The former waterworks pumping station of 1884, was advertised for sale in 2018. Does anybody know what happened next?
  5. I was wondering if Derwent Mouth Lock width has been published. John Smith had wide boats that operated to Horninglow and by previous observations had to fit the 14ft of Stenson. For the general Trent Boats to reach Shardlow, the width of Derwent Mouth Lock was presumably wider.
  6. Rose Narrowboats said We're seeing far more people than usual for the time of year. At some points the towing path has looked like Sunday afternoon in August with walkers, dog walkers, cyclists, loony cyclists, people coming to feed the ducks and even a motorbike. I think the slight drop today probably has more to do with the temperature. The interesting bit to me is that most are new faces - we know the regular walkers and they've pretty well all disappeared. Whilst one instruction is that people exercise as long as they keep the required distance. Yet this account seems to indicate some are not adhering to what has been stated. Being between Leamington and Warwick I suppose there is a large residential area near the canal and the canal does provide the recreation opportunities those with the enforced free time need. As to the rogue, or loony, cyclists, it would be nice to see their presence reduced. With the reduction of people needing to work away from home, I can only hope those that choose to cycle along the towpath for getting to and from work is reduced. Within that group of careful cyclists, are those that see speed between canal bridges paramount to get between work and home, with disregard for others.
  7. It would seem that this pandemic will effect the whole spectrum of the leisure industry. Until the virus can be controlled, all will suffer. Yet thought can be given how can hire boat operators assist in these difficult times and receive some form of payment at the same time, if that is at all possible.
  8. Having read the Balmforth report, I find the overall conclusion of value. The cause of failure at Toddbrook Reservoir on the 1 August 2019 was the poor design of the spillway, exacerbated by intermittent maintenance over the years which would have caused the spillway to deteriorate. It has not been possible to say whether it was the poor design or the intermittent maintenance that was the primary cause of failure on the day. With consistent good quality maintenance over the years leading up to the event the spillway may not have failed. However, it would have been unlikely to survive the probable maximum flood which is many times greater than the flood in which it failed.
  9. I am glad, Nathan, you found my book of use, it was written a few years ago now. The map reproduced of the estate is a useful guide to the extent of the Hambletts site. The LNWR Goods depot was Albion Interchange Basin Ray Shill
  10. Looking at the Ordnance Survey maps the buildings on the off-side of the canal on the Hawkesbury side of Tusses Bridge the image above fits with what has been suggested. A modern image shows the two cottages at Tusses Bridge The replacement bridge was later than 1927. The Coventry Evening Telegraph September 20th, 1935 offered tenders for the new bridge.
  11. The following image was published in Waterways World as a result of a find at the Black Country Museum. The location was the subject of the enquiry. Was anything decided. I wonder. The boats on the right have distinctive bows.
  12. Thanks Yes, it is the reports that Trent Barges might reach Horninglow is a reason for the observation. It is also worth comparing that Preston Brook Tunnel as opened in 1775 was made to 13ft 6in wide. Whilst Shardlow became the main transhipment point for Trent Boats. The fact of making locks 2-6 to a width that seems to fit a narrow boat pair, that could be 14ft, would suggest that the 13ft 6in quote may be a bit flexible for a few inches at least. As to Mattys comments, are modern 70ft narrow boats wider? As to the traders of their day, fly boats were light and perhaps a little narrower and such boats might have passed Locks 6-2 sharing a lock That James Brindley decided in the width is another question as Hugh Henshall was still clerk of works when locks 6-2 were made.
  13. The width of the Trent & Mersey Canal has been stated to accept craft of up to 13ft 6in in historical texts and the HNBS reported that the tail of Weston and Aston Locks were too narrow for some GU pairs. Yet standard narrow boats appear to fit the chambers on this length, when ascending or descending in pairs. I recall doing this in the past, so what is the width of these locks.
  14. The Canal History Workshop at Titford for March 28th 2020 has been postponed. Martin I Keeffe sends the following The workshop is postponed to a date to be arranged. Those who have booked and have paid can have the fee held over to the new date or refunded. If they could advise me one way or the other that would be helpful my email is [email protected]
  15. This heritage bridge on the Worcester and Birmingham was built for a different type of transport in a different age in the last stage of making the Worcester & Birmingham Canal to Lowesmore and Diglis. How much damage that has been done, will no doubt be forthcoming. Why such a large vehicle was passing along Plough Road is something that needs to be addressed and particularly with Joseph Holloway. Their base is Valencia Wharf, Oldbury adjacent to where Allen Brothers built boats. They also had their own boats at one time!
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