3 ISSUES FOR JUST £3 Subscribe to Canal Boat today click here

Middlewich breach ‘caused by lock paddles left up’, says CRT

PUBLISHED: 09:36 10 May 2018 | UPDATED: 09:36 10 May 2018

This hole will take 140 lorry loads to fill (photo: CRT)

This hole will take 140 lorry loads to fill (photo: CRT)

CRT

The Canal & River Trust has said lock paddles left raised were cause of the embankment collapse that shut part of the Shropshire Union Canal just outside Middlewich

The Canal & River Trust has said that it is “pretty confident” that lock paddles left raised at both ends of several nearby locks were the cause of the major embankment collapse that has shut the Middlewich Arm of the Shropshire Union Canal just outside Middlewich until further notice.

CRT’s Simon Bamford explained that the raised paddles at the lock below the breach site were spotted and closed, but those at the lock above it were not discovered until much later, allowing the level in the canal to rise as the overflow weir could not cope with the flow, leading to the water overtopping the bank, which then burst.

The resulting collapse saw 2800 cubic metres of embankment material washed out, stranding 14 boats and leaving a small aqueduct over the River Wheelock with its arch unevenly loaded, leading to concerns even though it is structurally undamaged. Repair work will first involve dealing with this, then rebuilding the embankment with ‘reinforced soil’ (it will take about 140 lorry loads), then reinstating the channel lining. To complicate matters, in addition to the engineering planning the work will also have to make allowances for an active badger sett on part of the site.

As we went to press, initial preparation work by contractors Kier had begun with a site compound set up and an access road installed. CRT told Canal Boat that it would be difficult to estimate timescales and budgets with any certainty before the end of May, but that “at the moment our best estimate is that repairs will take 6 months from June at a cost of between £2m and £3m”.

Marple delayed yet again

Meanwhile the reopening of Marple Locks following major repairs to Lock 15 after an emergency closure in September 2017 as a result of movement of the lock chamber wall has been postponed once more.

The condition of the lowest part of the wall has proved to be worse than expected with crushed masonry and missing mortar, and it has needed to be taken down and rebuilt right down to the bottom. This has added a further three weeks work (following earlier delays as a result of problems related to the constricted site, and the need for matching replacement stone to be sourced), meaning that it is not now expected to open until 25 May.

0 comments

Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files
Comments

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Canal Boat visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Canal Boat staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Canal Boat account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

More from news

Friday, September 7, 2018

Steve Haywood fights the corner for more diversity in boating

Read more
October 2018
Friday, September 7, 2018

Concerned at those taking risks crossing the Pontcysyllte on the Llangollen Canal, the Canal & River Trust has launched a campaign to encourage people to cross safely

Read more
October 2018
Friday, August 24, 2018

As the canal system continues to suffer the after-effects of the hot dry early summer, we ask the Canal & River Trust what the prognosis is for routes affected by water shortage, and for the longer term future

Read more
October 2018
Thursday, August 9, 2018

The Montgomery Canal’s Aston Nature Reserve extension is being built as part of a Lottery-funded restoration project

Read more
September 2018
Thursday, August 9, 2018

Following three liftbridge closures on the Scottish Lowland canals, the Scottish Government has provided extra funding – but waterways supporters are not convinced that it will save the system

Read more
September 2018
Thursday, August 9, 2018

Following the continued hot and dry weather, the Canal & River Trust announced that a long section of the trans-Pennine length of the Leeds & Liverpool Canal would close until further notice

Read more
September 2018
Tuesday, July 10, 2018

Rain and thunder may have punctuated the evenings of the Crick Boat Shows, but the days combined fair weather and bright prospects for canal boatbuilders

Read more
August 2018
Tuesday, July 10, 2018

The Canal & River Trust launched its new logo in May

Read more
August 2018
Tuesday, June 19, 2018

A new romantic comedy set on London’s canals is coming out in July

Read more
July 2018
Tuesday, June 5, 2018

Waterways campaigners and boating groups fear that the Union and Forth & Clyde canals could be slipping back into dereliction - but Scottish Canals 
says it’s working towards a sustainable future. So who’s right?

Read more
July 2018

Most Read

Newsletter Sign Up

Canal Boat monthly newsletter
Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

Like us on Facebook



Follow us on Twitter