Dur­ing the early 20th cen­tury, the Pocklington Canal fell into dis­use but sur­vived plans to turn it into a dump­ing ground for chalk sludge. Now vol­un­teers and sup­port­ers are cel­e­brat­ing the launch of a new nav­i­ga­ble stretch

Canal Boat - - Front Page -

Vol­un­teers cel­e­brate as new stretch is opened

Acer­e­mony marked the re­open­ing of a two-mile stretch on the Pocklington Canal which was first opened 200 years ago, as the great and the good gath­ered to cel­e­brate the restora­tion to the Bielby Arm which in­volved the restora­tion of two locks namely Thornton Lock and Wal­but Lock. The Canal & River Trust dredged the pound be­tween the two locks and un­der­took weed cut­ting and tree prun­ing above the Wal­but Lock.

Dig­ni­taries in­cluded Lord Halifax, pa­tron of the Pocklington Canal Amenity So­ci­ety and CRT chief ex­ec­u­tive Richard

Parry. Also present was David Ren­wick head of the Her­itage Lot­tery Fund for York­shire and Hum­ber­side to­gether with Adelle Rowe, area man­ager for Nat­u­ral Eng­land.

The first boats to reach the Bielby Arm were Lock­wood and Alpheus. The PCAS’s own trip boat New Hori­zons to­gether with

Just Chillin had made an in­spec­tion jour­ney to check the locks and depth of wa­ter.

The CRT’s work­boat Gaw­burn was pressed into ser­vice both to clear weed growth in the Mel­bourne arm and recheck wa­ter depth. It is thought that the Gaw­burn is the largest boat to travel up the canal to Bielby in many years.

The Bielby Arm is not, in fact, owned by the Canal and River Trust but is used by the Univer­sity of York for re­search pur­poses. With two more miles of canl re­opened both PCAS and the CRT have their sights set of the next lock to re­store, namely Sand­hill. Co­in­cid­ing with the re­open­ing was the award to the canal of the Green Flag award.

The boat Lock­wood was the sec­ond boat into Thornton Lock af­ter the re­open­ing

En­ter­ing the newly re­opened Wal­but Lock

Richard Parry, David Ren­wick, Adelle Rowe with Paul Wadding­ton

Lord Halifax with PCAS chair­man Paul Wadding­ton

CRT work­boat Gaw­burn, big­gest to Bielby so far

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