Wednesday, 3 August 2011

A spot of dredging

Four months ago (such a long time!), on day 7 of our Easter cruise, we were travelling down the Staffs and Worcs. A quick recap on the journey so far:

Day 1 (Sat 2nd April 2011): Wigram's Turn Marina to Lower Shuckburgh

Day 2: Lower Shuckburgh to Sutton Stop

Day 3: Sutton Stop to Polesworth

Day 4: Polesworth to Curdworth

Day 5: Curdworth to Ocker Hill Tunnel Branch via Perry Barr locks

Day 6: Ocker Hill Tunnel Branch to Aldersley Junction via Walsall and Wyrley & Essington Canal

In the Compton area we came across a BW team dredging the canal. Is this what's known as "spot dredging"?

The dredgings are dumped on the bank in the narrow strip between the towpath and the canal. One man's job is to level the spoil with a rake.

Another load comes up from the bottom. How does he know how far down to go? Too far and he'll bring up the puddled clay, and if that happens the canal could leak. How thick is the clay puddle lining? I imagine it's about a foot or one foot six inches. Am I right?

The digger operator needs to be accurate with his positioning of the dumped spoil!

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