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Wednesday 2 February

Today's news from the web

  • Work starts on £43m Helix visitor attraction bbc.co.uk

    Work to transform a 300-hectare site of unused land between Falkirk and Grangemouth into an international visitor attraction is set to begin. The £43m Helix project includes two huge horse head sculptures and a waterway linking Grangemouth into the Scottish canal network. Work will start on the canal hub and canal extension, and the fabrication of the 30m (98ft) "kelpie" sculptures....

  • Canal chiefs float illuminating idea news.scotsman.com

    Solar lighting is being looked at to illuminate much of Edinburgh's ten miles of canals under a new plan to encourage people to walk, run and cycle on the banks of the Union Canal after dark. British Waterways Scotland, the trust responsible for managing all of Scotland's 137-mile canal network, is in talks with the city council about installing solar lights along the canal between Viewforth bridge, near Edinburgh Quay, and the City Bypass at Wester Hailes. The talks are part of the wider project to breathe new life into the city's canal network....


Tuesday 1 February

Today's news from the web

  • Nature Studies by Michael McCarthy: Of all our conservation failures, this is the saddest - Nature Studies, Nature - The independent.co.uk

    After more than 30 years of trying, and a colossal amount of thinking, effort, and expense, the current custodians of the dream, the Environment Agency, has more or less accepted that it is not going to be realised, and this year's stocking of young fish in the river – in the hope that they might go down to the sea and then return as adults, to breed – will be the last. The salmon have not come back. A native breeding population has not been established, and only a tiny handful of adult fish are now turning up in the river each summer. The project, which many people set their hearts on, has effectively failed....


Monday 31 January

Today's news from the web

  • 'Thames whale' skeleton on display at Natural History Museum nhm.ac.uk

    On 19 January 2006, a 6-metre-long female whale swam up the Thames. From the moment the whale was spotted, she captured the public's imagination. Sadly, despite human efforts, the northern bottlenose whale died towards the end of a rescue attempt, under the gaze of the world’s media. In this temporary exhibition you can get up close to the incredible skeleton and hear the whale's story, from its origins and very public death to what happened next and what we can learn from it. ...


Friday 28 January

Today's news from the web

  • Thames cable car given go-ahead bbc.co.uk

    A planned cable car across the River Thames to link 2012 Olympic venues has been approved by Greenwich Council. The cable car will connect Greenwich and the Royal Docks, carrying up to 2,500 passengers-an-hour. It was designed to cut journey times between the O2 arena and the ExCel exhibition centre - both of which will host Olympic events. Newham Council approved plans on 18 January. Proposals will now be put before the Greater London Authority. The London Development Agency is contributing £1.21m to the cost of the project, which in December was estimated at a possible £40m. ...


Wednesday 26 January

Today's news from the web

  • £75,000 for Spalding Water Taxi and promoting town spaldingtoday.co.uk

    Tourism in Spalding is to be given a £75,000 boost with a major town centre advertising campaign and improvements to the water taxi. The town is to join forces with Springfields and the Red Lion Quarter to sell itself via a £50,000 television, radio and leaflet campaign to neighbouring counties. Spalding Water Taxi, which is owned by South Holland District Council and Broadgate Homes, will also benefit from £25,000 of improvements to move its moorings to a more secure spot on the river. ...

  • Plans revealed for Brimscombe port stroudnewsandjournal.co.uk

    More than 400 jobs could be created under plans revealed this week for a major re-development of Brimscombe port. The proposals, unveiled as part of the canal project, are for 214 flats, 25 houses, a business park, shops, restaurants and a hotel which could be completed by 2014. Plans have been in the pipeline since 2003 but stalled in 2008 when British Waterways pulled out of the canal development. Stroud District Council hopes to gain outline planning permission by March and will then look for a developer. ...

  • Conservation extension saves Froghall copper works chimney bbc.co.uk

    A conservation area has been extended by a council, halting the demolition of a disused industrial chimney. The owners of the old Bolton's Copper Works at Froghall in Staffordshire Moorlands said they wanted to pull down the 100m (328ft) chimney on Wednesday. But the district council decided on Tuesday to include it in Caldon Canal Conservation Area. A final decision about the chimney's future will follow a consultation, the council said. Owners Sterling Investments were unavailable for comment. ...


Tuesday 25 January

Today's news from the web

  • Historic canal from Gravesend to Higham restoration nears completion gravesendreporter.co.uk

    Volunteers at the Thames and Medway Canal Association, founded in 1976, have worked tirelessly towards the restoration of the early 19th century waterway which runs from Mark Lane, Gravesend, to Higham. This month final touches to a one kilometre stretch are to be completed, with the installation of pumps and connection by electricty firm EDF allowing the canal to become operational. Water will then constantly feed the section via a nearby weir pond. ...

  • Henley on Thames - Shiplake lock voted best-kept on Thames henleystandard.co.uk

    Shiplake Lock has been named the best-kept lock on the Thames. The award comes after hundreds of river-users voted for the lock in the Environment Agency’s Thames Waterways Awards. Lock-keeper Geoff Horsnell, who has run the lock for the past 20 years, said he was delighted. “For Shiplake to be voted the best kept lock by users of the river is a great honour,” he said. “I really am very flattered. ...


Monday 24 January

Today's news from the web

  • Floating Thames Promenade Design Wins Top Prize at Mayor’s Planning Awards freshbusinessthinking.com

    Plans to create a new mile long floating river walk along the north bank of the River Thames, connecting Blackfriars Bridge with the Tower of London have won the Mayor's Award for 'Planning Excellence' at the 2010 London Planning Awards. Designed by global architects and planners Gensler as part of the London 2012 celebrations, the 'London River Park' is a conceptual idea to provide a continuous floating pontoon to run parallel to the existing disjointed pathways and streets that currently connect this important stretch of river frontage bordering the City of London...

  • Disgrace of ‘dogs’ toilet’ - Letters - Todmorden News todmordennews.co.uk

    I recently started walking from the centre of Todmorden towards Hebden Bridge on the canal bank, and had only reached the Lidl car park when I came across the biggest dogs’ toilet I have ever seen. The canal bank has been used for what looks like a toilet for all the dogs in the town, there are piles of the stuff every few inches for about 200 yards, and then it starts to thin out. It appears that a lot of the dog owners in Todmorden have no thought for people who like to walk on the tow paths or for the appearance of the town. ...

  • Wiltshire volunteers for canal care gazetteandherald.co.uk

    British Waterways has appealed for volunteers to keep the Kennet and Avon Canal looking good as it struggles with shrinking budgets. The quango, shortly to reinvent itself as a charity, is launching a new volunteering scheme to find people prepared to give up a few hours a month to help maintain the 200-year-old waterway. Mark Stephens, British Waterways’ waterway manager, said: “The Kennet and Avon Canal is a beautiful stretch of waterway. Unfortunately, British Waterways has limited resources to be able to keep the canal looking good. “We hope that local people will join us to help with tasks such as cutting back overgrown vegetation so the towpath is kept clear, as well as painting lock gates and clearing litter from the canal.” ...

  • Next phase of Bristol's flood defence work to start bbc.co.uk

    The third phase of an £11m project to replace Bristol Harbour's flood defences is expected to start on Monday. This phase involves replacing the gates at Netham Lock, where boats from the River Avon can gain access to the floating harbour. Built in about 1809, the lock marks the end of the Feeder Canal. Back-up flood gates have already been installed at Junction Lock, and the swing bridge has been upgraded. ...


Thursday 20 January

Today's news from the web

  • A trip on New York's Erie Canal latimes.com

    Reporting from the Erie Canal, N.Y. — "Now I know what's meant by 'steering committee,'" the lock tender said with a laugh as the water, rushing through the sluice gates of Erie Canal Lock 32, raised us to his level. Karin was at the tiller of Seneca, our 42-foot charter boat, and I had my hand on the controls of that loveliest of maneuvering cheats: the bow thruster, which effortlessly moved the bow to port or starboard. ...

  • Stourton boatman left 'immense' waterways legacy stourbridgenews.co.uk

    A leading boatbuilder from Stourton who created one of the most well-known canal boats in Britain has died. David Baugh, from Black Country Narrowboats, died aged 75 on January 8 after an eight-year battle with cancer and Parkinson’s disease. He is best-known as the man who built Ragdoll, the boat featured in the hugely successful children’s TV series Rosie and Jim. ...

  • Rhine still blocked by German acid ship independent.co.uk

    A section of Germany's Rhine river remained closed to traffic Friday after a ship carrying nearly 2,400 tonnes of sulphuric acid capsized, as hopes faded for two men missing...

  • Dispute over third Thames bridge plans getwokingham.co.uk

    Conflicting plans have left neighbouring councils at loggerheads over the need for a third bridge over the River Thames. Wokingham Borough Council will approve an objection this week to the South Oxfordshire Core Strategy planning document, which states that an additional bridge is not needed and would have an adverse impact on the district. The absence of support for a third Thames bridge for the area is in conflict with Wokingham and Reading’s blueprints for future housing and transport development, according to Wokingham council. ...

  • Boat-building traineeships offered at National Waterways Museum, Ellesmere Port ellesmereportpioneer.co.uk

    Boat building will be revived by a £126,000 project at the National Waterways Museum in Ellesmere Port. The museum has launched Keeping History Afloat – Traditional Boat-Building Skills for the Future, funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund’s Skills for the Future programme, to develop traditional boat-building and conservation skills ...

  • John Gould Award winner announced waterscape.com

    The Kennet & Avon Canal Trust has awarded its annual John Gould award to Richard Snook of the Hungerford Branch Committee for his commitment to the canal....


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