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Now floods hit canals too

PUBLISHED: 17:01 10 February 2014 | UPDATED: 17:01 10 February 2014

Archant

The heavy rain and flooding which have been causing problems on our rivers for the whole of 2014 to date have started to affect the canals too, with both the Oxford and Grand Union hit by closures.

The heavy rain and flooding which have been causing problems on our rivers for the whole of 2014 to date have started to affect the canals too, with both the Oxford and Grand Union hit by closures.

The River Cherwell burst its banks, raising the southern Oxford Canal to dangerous levels where it runs alongside it or crosses it at Banbury, Nell Bridge, Aynho, Somerton, Lower Heyford and Shipton.

Meanwhile the Grand Union had to be closed between Marsworth and Leighton Buzzard plus the Aylesbury Arm while paddles were opened to get rid of surplus water. Further north, Stoke Bruerne Locks were closed due to high water levels, and southwards towards London the rivers Bulbourne and Gade caused problems all the way down to Rickmansworth.

Canal & River Trust Waterway Manager Geoff Whyatt said his team had been “working round the clock this weekend” clearing rubbish and debris from weirs and culverts to prevent any further flooding. He added that although the situation had improved, the towpaths are still sodden and parts of the Oxford Canal are still impassable.

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