Moving on

“A brand New Year – a brand new project” – All thanks to the Shropshire Union Canal Society.

The end of an era and the start of a new. This work party saw removal of the remaining large items from the Lloyds Animal Feeds compound. By the end of the weekend, the Crickheath South compound was fully established. In addition, a wide variety of other preparatory tasks were undertaken.

Whilst work in the compound was underway, many other tasks were undertaken. Unlike the relentless rainfall in the preceding days, we were blessed with generally dry and, for much of the time, sunny weather. But with water in the channel by the wharf north of the compound, work focus ed in the area to the south.

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Friday saw a large crane-lift lorry relocate three containers to the new compound together with a number of other large items including the beloved concrete mixer. Work proceeded on the following days to fully establish the new compound with connection of the water supply and erection of the welfare shelter. The shelter was completed with perfect timing on the Sunday afternoon, ready for us to move in at the next work party.

Some volunteers continued vegetation clearance in the channel south of the compound complete with the inevitable bonfire, always popular on chilly days.

Detailed surveying work focussed this time on the channel itself. Measurements were taken from one side of the channel to the other every ten metres. This will inform the detailed design and dimensions of this section of channel restoration. Over half the channel has now been surveyed.

Further work to establish the detailed construction of the wharf wall was undertaken. This will inform the extent and method of repairs required.

Finally, decommissioning and tidy up activities in the old compound were completed. All in all a very productive three days which saw volunteers travelling from many different compass directions, including one regular stalwart from London.

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