Ham Mill Lock 5th Report

Ham Mill Volunteers make progress

Removal of defective brickwork and ‘toothing out’ of bricks to enable new brickwork to be keyed in is now complete – ahead of schedule!

Bricklayers share their skills

Both ladder recesses have been cut and finished with new bricks. Bricklaying has progressed this week very quickly, with skilled bricklayers working with, and passing on their skills to, other willing volunteers.

One such skilled bricklayer, Bob Ambury, is pictured right. The ladder recess can be seen at the right of the picture.

Silt removal

Work is progressing in the area between the Aquadam and the top of the lock. Stop-planks have been removed along with the props which were bracing them against the concrete dam, which will be removed at a later date.

There is a large amount of sloppy black silt to be removed from this area.

A number of loads have been removed, aided by a 3-tonne digger generously loaned by JB Plant Hire of Ebley.

Work over the next few weeks will focus on continuing with bricklaying and removal of silt.

The team will also be installing stainless steel channels for the new stop-planks.

One set of gates delivered

The lower gates were delivered by Hargreaves of Sowerby Bridge, Yorkshire to Brimscombe Port on the 18th March.

They will be stored there until installation later in the year. The current target is June.

Spill weir tests encouraging

The spill-weir outlet has been excavated and initial tests on the spill-weir are encouraging in that water appears to be running through it fairly freely.

Project Manager Ron Kerby is pictured above with Canal & River Trust Restoration Campaign Manager Simon Henry. Simon travelled down from London on a fact finding visit to the Cotswold Canals Project. He readily expressed his appreciation of the professional standards being maintained by the CCT volunteers.

More local business support

JB Plant Hire's corporate generosity has been matched by Tricel Ltd. of Stonehouse.   Tricel have agreed to supply a cofferdam at no cost. This will be installed around the spill-weir outlet to enable further clearing of silt and repair to the brickwork.

New volunteers welcomed

Les Morris reports… "The Ham Mill Team has been pleased to welcome several new volunteers recently; some are local residents who use the tow path and others who have been enthused by the website updates.

"A number of volunteers who work in the Wallbridge Visitor Centre have been given a guided tour of the site, to enable them to better explain our work to visitors."

Time to spare and skills to share – Why not join the team?

You can drop in to the Ham Mill site and register your interest. The work requires all levels of skills for a wide range of tasks; from mixing the mortar and wheeling it to the bricklayers through to maintaining the site's customary safe and tidy state. 

Click on the Connect icon below to register your interest and find out more.

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