Sharp­ness gets dol­phin-friendly


Canal Boat - - News -

DOL­PHINS AND OTHER marine mam­mals are reg­u­larly sighted in Bri­tain’s ti­dal estuaries, but this one caused a stir when it not only got into Sharp­ness Docks but showed signs of head­ing up the Glouces­ter & Sharp­ness Canal to­wards Glouces­ter.

Mike Nash from the Canal & River Trust’s Sharp­ness team said: “I’ve seen dol­phins in the en­trance to Sharp­ness be­fore, but never in­side – and we had to do every­thing we could to stop it head­ing up the canal.” CRT ecol­o­gist Laura Mull­hol­land be­lieved it was likely to have “got a bit dis­ori­en­tated fol­low­ing some fish”.

For­tu­nately, with the as­sis­tance of the Sev­ern Area Res­cue As­so­ci­a­tion’s lo­cal lifeboats, CRT man­aged to dis­suade the dol­phin from head­ing fur­ther in­land and guided it back out of the docks to­wards the sea. 29 Fe­bru­ary for the in­stal­la­tion of safety gates. The Canal & River Trust has al­ready sched­uled a clo­sure on the L& L at Bridge 109a in Ac­cring­ton from 2 Novem­ber to 5 Fe­bru­ary on the Leeds & Liver­pool Canal. This means that the west Lan­cashire lengths of the L& L will be cut off from the rest of the net­work for over three months – other than for any ad­ven­tur­ous boaters pre­pared to brave the Mersey es­tu­ary and Manch­ester Ship Canal.

How­ever, the good news is that there are no other all-win­ter stop­pages on the rest of the na­tional net­work, the only other one re­main­ing in CRT’s now fi­nalised win­ter stop­page pro­gramme be­ing on the iso­lated Mon­mouthshire & Bre­con Canal.

See canal­ for de­tails of all clo­sures.

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