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Centennial Cruise Completed

A report from Mike Gallagher

The Centennial Cruise Flotillas reached their destination on Sunday 4th September when the Mayor of Lechlade, Christine Eatwell, welcomed the crews and their boats to Lechlade.

At the reception event Mayor Eatwell spoke of the benefits of the restoration of the waterway link and its impact on tourism.

The Centennial Cruise set off from Saul on Friday 12th August in two flotillas.

Their aim was to commemorate the last commercial journey from Severn to Thames in 1911 when a narrow boat named Gem carried a final load of stone from Saul to Lechlade.

The flotillas took separate Northern & Southern routes to rendezvous in Lechlade on 4th September for celebrations and a Family Fun Day.

Two Routes to Lechlade

The Northern route was via Stratford on Avon and Oxford and the Southern route via Bristol, Bath and Devizes.

Mission Accomplished

Cotswold Canals Trust member Martin Turner, leader of the southern flotilla, stated “We are very pleased with the amount of interest shown by public and media en route. The venture certainly achieved its aim of generating support and funds for the restoration of the Cotswold Canals.”

The final rendezvous and celebrations were filmed by BBC's 'Inside Out West' Team covering the cruise for a programme featuring the restoration to be aired in the autumn.