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Local school children will get the chance to step back in time to 1952, as part of an exciting project put together by British Waterways and The Canal Museum at Stoke Bruerne, which is managed by The Waterways Trust.


Six schools - Blisworth Primary School, Pattishall Primary, Billingbrooke School, Rothersthorpe Primary School, Great Gaddesdon Primary and Ashton Primary – have signed up to take part in ‘Harry’s Cut’, a costumed interpretation by some colourful characters of life onboard a working narrow boat in the 1950s.


The performances will take place at the picturesque Stoke Bruerne in Northamptonshire, on the Grand Union Canal, between 8th and 10th June.


The pupils will travel back in time to meet Harry and his family, who work a pair of narrowboats carrying cargoes across England. They will be challenged to help Harry make decisions about his life on the canal and invited to climb onboard to discover more about living on a boat.


Jacqui Palmer, Community & Education Co-ordinator for South East Waterways, said: “This will be a brilliant opportunity for the children and their teachers to learn more about the history of our local waterways and their important role, in a way that is fun, lively and hands-on.”


The children will be able to ‘have a go’ at hands on activities such as ‘Load the narrowboat’, ‘Float the Narrowboat’ and ‘Dig the Cut’, all based on life on the canal.


The schools event forms part of wider celebrations to commemorate the 200th anniversary of the opening of Blisworth Tunnel, the UK’s third longest navigable canal tunnel, which runs for 1 ¾ miles between Stoke Bruerne and Blisworth.



The climax will be a weekend of entertainment at the Blisworth Festival, which will see events happening at both villages on Saturday 18th and Sunday 19th June. Highlights will include the biggest gathering of boats in Northamptonshire since the 1970s, with over 200 expected at the event, and a boat procession through the tunnel on Saturday afternoon. For more information, visit www.blisworthtunnel.org.uk.


For more information on the Harry’s Cut schools event, contact Ruth Driver on 01604 862229.


From British Waterways

Edited by Sam

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