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Doesn't say they were in the water. Suggests their boats were still floating with them on board. Reading between the lines their going in was reported by someone. The fire and ambulance services had to respond 'cause of the flack they would have got if they didn't and people died. They shouldn't have been there anyway, especially at that time of night, so escorted out by the water rescue launch. It was a quiet night, so lots appliances turned out.

 

Jen

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Just now, archie57 said:

Don't recall seeing this elsewhere! Does anyone realise it's only 4ft 6" deep, most people could probably walk out.....

https://www.stokesentinel.co.uk/news/stoke-on-trent-news/midnight-kayakers-rescued-after-getting-4191708

 

 

Most but not all ...

 

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2635127/Father-drowned-Harecastle-Tunnel-hitting-head-boating-holiday.html

 

Sorry for the Daily Wail link, but it's the one I have!

 

 

 

 

(For clarity this isn't the same incident, this was 6 years ago.)

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Could they not paddle anymore? Were their vessels leaking? Why couldn't they get out, presumably they got in!

 

55 minutes ago, archie57 said:

Don't recall seeing this elsewhere! Does anyone realise it's only 4ft 6" deep, most people could probably walk out.....

https://www.stokesentinel.co.uk/news/stoke-on-trent-news/midnight-kayakers-rescued-after-getting-4191708

 

No idea about the tunnel but a few years ago dad ended up in the canal on Marple Aqueduct and was amazed to find his feet wouldn't touch the bottom - he's over 6 feet tall.

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2 minutes ago, magpie patrick said:

Could they not paddle anymore? Were their vessels leaking? Why couldn't they get out, presumably they got in!

 

No idea about the tunnel but a few years ago dad ended up in the canal on Marple Aqueduct and was amazed to find his feet wouldn't touch the bottom - he's over 6 feet tall.

That'll be one of the regular collapsed culverts he had his feet in then.   

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Maybe they went in at the north end where there is only a car park type barrier and paddled all the way to the south end to be confronted by the closed door. Perhaps then the kayak was to long to then turn round. Or maybe they just thought the the rule about not going in the tunnel in un-powered craft didn't apply to them. A bit like covid-19 rules don't apply to everyone either!

Edited by Alway Swilby
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2 hours ago, archie57 said:

Don't recall seeing this elsewhere! Does anyone realise it's only 4ft 6" deep, most people could probably walk out.....

https://www.stokesentinel.co.uk/news/stoke-on-trent-news/midnight-kayakers-rescued-after-getting-4191708

 

Is this true? or specifically has the canal been partly filled in to compensate for the subsidence? I reckon its sunk by between 2 and 3 feet at the low bit, so if it was built to 4'6" it will be a lot deeper now.

 

...............Dave

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Large parts of it were given a concrete invert when the towpath and the steel struts that supported the subsiding bit were removed in the early 80s.  Mate of mine got stuck one night in his Josher and I had to back up half the tunnel and drag him out.  No barriers or tunnel keepers then  just a one-way system.  North in the mornings. South in the afternoon.

 

N

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8 minutes ago, BEngo said:

Large parts of it were given a concrete invert when the towpath and the steel struts that supported the subsiding bit were removed in the early 80s.  Mate of mine got stuck one night in his Josher and I had to back up half the tunnel and drag him out.  No barriers or tunnel keepers then  just a one-way system.  North in the mornings. South in the afternoon.

 

N

This is interesting, thanks! I had always assumed most tunnels were made extra deep to prevent groundings and also sometimes to improve water storage as they tend to be on summit levels. I know this is true for the K&A. Wish the canal history books didn't all end their accounts after commercial carrying ended. 

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2 hours ago, magpie patrick said:

No idea about the tunnel but a few years ago dad ended up in the canal on Marple Aqueduct and was amazed to find his feet wouldn't touch the bottom - he's over 6 feet tall.

 

53 minutes ago, Dave123 said:

This is interesting, thanks! I had always assumed most tunnels were made extra deep to prevent groundings and also sometimes to improve water storage as they tend to be on summit levels. I know this is true for the K&A. Wish the canal history books didn't all end their accounts after commercial carrying ended. 

Another reason to make narrow aquaducts and tunnels deep is to help boats move. The displaced water can flow underneath the boat, rather than be pushed ahead and round the sides. On the Llangollen, both in the tunnels and the aquaducts travelling with friends upstream, my 2' draft boat could move through them a lot easier than my friends almost 3' draft boat. Same length, same engine.

Jen

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28 minutes ago, Jen-in-Wellies said:

 

Another reason to make narrow aquaducts and tunnels deep is to help boats move. The displaced water can flow underneath the boat, rather than be pushed ahead and round the sides. On the Llangollen, both in the tunnels and the aquaducts travelling with friends upstream, my 2' draft boat could move through them a lot easier than my friends almost 3' draft boat. Same length, same engine.

Jen

ah this'll be the same thing i find when going under bridges when it gets narrow - the boat slows noticeably..

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15 minutes ago, Tacet said:

Getting stuck in Harecastle tunnel in a kayak at midnight is a bit odd.  Were they exploring the old tunnel?

Impossible to say from the newspaper reports, but they may not have been stuck. They shouldn't have been there. Out of CaRT hours, in unpowered craft, but if the fire and ambulance people hadn't turned up there is a good chance they would have finished their trip without incident and no one would have been any the wiser. If someone had spotted them going in and reported it, then the emergency services would have to respond. They were in their boats, not in the water and were towed out by the fire service craft, so not necessarily in any immediate danger.

The sort of adventure where the important thing is not to break the eleventh commandment. "Thou Shall Not Get Found Out!"

Jen

Edited by Jen-in-Wellies
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8 minutes ago, Tacet said:

Getting stuck in Harecastle tunnel in a kayak at midnight is a bit odd.  Were they exploring the old tunnel?

You can't get in the old tunnel because of the metal grid at both ends. The north portal has a lift up barrier and the south portal has gates. They probably went in under the north barrier and couldn't get out of the south end.

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I thought I might find something on 28DaysLater about trips into the old Harecastle Tunnel, but all I found were some trips into the railway tunnel which was abandoned when the West Coast Main Line route was realigned for electrification in the 1960s. One report begins:

 

"Harecastle South Tunnel - 1,766yds

Built in 1848 by James Brindley & Co. Harecastle Tunnel (South) was on the original route of the West Coast Mainline (WCML) built for the North Staffordshire Railway it was one of three railway tunnels in this area ..."

 

Interesting that James Brindley was building railway tunnels 76 years after he died!

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Years ago "when I were a lad" I went to a talk y someone who made a habit of venturing into old tunnels in a canoe - he showed slides of Sapperton, Oxenhall and Harecastle Old, he had helped police when the body of a young woman, a kidnap victim, was found in a modern shaft that connected to the old tunnel. 

 

He was possibly a little bit arrogant, certainly old school health and safety, but he knew what he was doing!

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"We were 1,300 metres through when we saw a torch behind us. We still had about 45 minutes to go.

"We didn't think that much of it at first and thought it was probably a dog walker. ...

 

Hmmm. Acquatic dogs. If it had been 1972 there would still have been a towingpath ...spacer.png

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It won't happen again.

Harecastle now only available 4 days a week for 4 hours by appointment only.

Another of C&RT's close downs. Disgusting.

How long before we have no canals in the UK?

I wonder what lame excuse they will use for this latest "restriction"?

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15 minutes ago, Tracy D'arth said:

Harecastle now only available 4 days a week for 4 hours by appointment only.

I wonder what lame excuse they will use for this latest "restriction"?

Because the canals have only just been reopened after lockdown and aren't yet back to full operational capacity? 

Just an idea, but seems like a reasonable excuse to me. 

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