Sharpness gets dolphin-friendly
GLOUCESTER & SHARPNESS
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 canalrivertrust.org.uk for details of all closures.