ENews 2014-06

16th October 2014

Hello and welcome to ENews 2014-06.

The headlines this time round:

Ex Lockkeeper's house on the market,
But you'll need a few bob to complete.
The recent Quiz Night was successful,
So there's likely to be a repeat.

Update on progress with 1A,
Things really are moving along.
Income from the flow at Dudbridge,
A stream that is proving quite strong.

300 Club payout this quarter,
3 lucky people to share.
The AGM happens next weekend,
Trust Members are most welcome there.

Please read on for the stories behind these headlines.

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DIG DEEP

Quite a rare opportunity to own a Thames & Severn Canal lock cottage has arisen.

The one at South Cerney has recently come onto the market, but you'll need deep pockets as the asking price is £475,000. Agents' details can be found at http://goo.gl/8L70WN

The Cotswold Canals Trust owns some of the garden between the filled in lock and Claymeadow Cutting – so any prospective purchasers will need to be aware of this and of the Trust's long-term plans for this particular stretch.

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ANY ANSWERS

A very enjoyable Quiz Night was held at Frombridge Mill a month or so ago. A total of 9 teams competed for a Trophy by answering questions on water related topics.

The Quiz ended with the presentation of the Trophy and Certificates. Although the Quiz was primarily a social event, team entry fees contributed £90 to Trust funds and a further £46 was raised by the raffle held during the half-time interval. It is likely to become an annual event in the Social Calendar.

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RESTORATION SNIPPETS

Once again I have Stroud District Council's Dave Marshall to thank for the following update.

Dudbridge: A contract for repairing the winter storm damage to the bypass channel should be awarded shortly, although the start date is not yet available.  Before it does start volunteers will be repairing the brick ‘invert’ (base of the lock) where some bricks were washed out by high flows.  The contractor may well need to route river flow directly through the locks whilst the bypass is repaired, hence the need to carry out the invert repairs first.

Wallbridge Lower Lock: The post and mesh revetment along both sides of the channel is now complete. The contractor has also completed temporary works to protect the fish/eel pass excavations from flooding. This excavation work has now started. Land & Water Services has completed dredging work between the lock and Lodgemore Bridge. The company also cleared the lock chamber and removed the dangerous overhanging wall.
Work along this stretch is being funded with the assistance of a £100,000 grant from the Veolia Environmental Trust. Two webcams covering this section have been installed – see www.stroud.gov.uk/canalcams.

Towpath Work: As always, volunteers are doing sterling work on the towpath. The surface between Arundel Aqueduct and Bowbridge is now complete – this work was funded by Newland Homes as part of a S106 planning condition. At Capels Mill, they are adjusting the camber on the sloping sections of towpath to address erosion issues, whilst on the flatter sections, problems with puddles are being resolved.

Bowbridge Lock: Rebuilding of the collapsed wharf wall just above the lock is nearing completion and by the end of this month the towpath behind it will have been restored. The stonework is of a very high standard and credit is due to the volunteer team that undertook the task. This section will double as a landing stage to serve the lock and will include the provision of mooring bollards. Meanwhile, stripping of defective brickwork from the lock offside continues. Water flowing through the lock has been piped.

Griffin’s Mill: Temporary fencing around the site has been removed and permanent field fencing installed. Work to rebuild the nearby Jubilee Wharf wall is now complete; this has virtually stopped a long-running leak from the canal into the adjacent River Frome.

Ham Mill Lock: Restoration of this Listed structure has been taken on by a team from the Cotswold Canals Trust’s Western Depot at Eastington. They have already prepared the site and we look forward to working with them to see this project through to completion.

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FLOWING INCOME

An excellent suggestion has been received from my other reader; it was felt that you may like to be kept abreast of how the Dudbridge Hydro Scheme is working and have some idea of what it's actually generated since its inception. And, of course, some idea of what this means in cash terms to the Stroud Valley Canals Company (SVCC).

SVCC Director and CCT Chief Executive Ken Burgin tells me:
"Total generation to date is approx 62 Megawatt hours which, when all the receipts come in, is worth about £15,500. This is in spite of some quite long outages caused by restoration work, including the Dudbridge Locks, not forgetting last December's serious flooding.
"The hydro scheme income goes to SVCC and SVCC puts money into CCT either in the form of supporting costs, buying materials or providing capital kit on which SVCC is able to claim back 20% VAT (unlike CCT). Examples are the Wookey Hole work boat and the weed cutter. Part of the hydro income has to go to pay off a loan provided by SDC."

For some background to SVCC, have a look at http://goo.gl/Ur2I9k

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300's 3 WINNERS

The 300 Club Quarterly Draw took place on Thursday 15th October at the Trust’s Wallbridge Visitor Centre. Once again the prize fund exceeded £1,000 and a total of £1,046 was shared by the 3 lucky winners.

The first prize of £627 was won by Mr Jenkins of Bristol, the second prize of £314 by Mrs S Attwood of Stroud (That'll help pay for the holiday, Sue!), and the third prize of £105 went to Ms Watson of Cirencester.

If you would like to find out more about the 300 Club and would like to join or just increase your existing stake, please visit http://goo.gl/eC904v

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HAVE YOUR SAY

It's AGM time again; next Saturday (25th) is the date, New Memorial Hall Lechlade is the venue and 10:30 is the start time.

Links to last year's Minutes, this year's Agenda and copies of the Trust's accounts can be found at http://goo.gl/ph1Am0

Once the formalities are complete Chief Executive Ken Burgin will provide a restoration update and hot on his heels will be Val Kirby (Chair of the 1B Bid Team) with her update on the funding process for 1B.

All this should take until 12:30/13:00, after when members are invited to visit the CCT's Eastern Maintenance Depot at Alex Farm and the Weymoor Bridge restoration. Directions will be available at the AGM.

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FORTHCOMING EVENTS

For further information (including contact details) about any items marked by an asterisk, please go to www.cct.teamconnect.org.uk and the Message Boards that can be found on the Activities and Rosters page. To become a registered volunteer follow the Register Me Now link.

Mondays and Wednesdays from 09:00*: Maintenance activity at Western Depot Eastington.
Tuesdays and Thursdays from 09:00*: Maintenance activity at Eas
tern Depot Eisey.
Tuesdays from 10:00: Work Parties at Griffins Mill Lock
Thursdays from 10:00: Introductory volunteer sessions aimed at those new to volunteering. Meet Wallbridge Visitor Centre. Existing CCT volunteers more than welcome.

OCTOBER
25th – CCT AGM at New Memorial Hall Lechlade from 10:30am
28th – Construction Action Group Meeting at Down Ampney Village Hall, 19:30

NOVEMBER
4th – Noggin 'n' Natter at the Alehouse Stroud from 19:30
19th – Eastern Branch meeting Trout Inn Lechlade from 19:30
25th – Construction Action Group Meeting at Brimscombe Port, 19:30

DECEMBER
9th – Noggin 'n' Natter at the Alehouse Stroud from 19:30
17th – Eastern Branch meeting Trout Inn Lechlade from 19:30
23rd – Construction Action Group Meeting at Down Ampney Village Hall, 19:30

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If you have any item you consider newsworthy then please send me an email, although I would ask you to bear in mind that I always look for a connection with the Stroudwater, Thames and Severn or the CCT before considering any article for publication.

Any and all feedback – preferably good, but bad as well – is more than welcome.

PLEASE NOTE. We keep your email address on an electronic database for the sole purpose of contacting you in this way. We will never pass it on to any third party.

David Pagett
Editor, ENews
listmaster@cctmembers-newsletter.co.uk