It's 5 months since the last Summerhill Report. This is primarily due to the gang being asked to help out at Gallows Wharf, which absorbed a lot of time. The work mainly involved bricklaying on the wharf wall, construction of edging for the flowerbeds and chipping out the concrete from the top of the towpath. A pleasant time was had by all in a very pretty environment. The only niggle was an argument with the filling station proprietor over taking water from their tap. This was resolved eventually, but I note now that the filling station has been demolished. It doesn’t pay to mess with the LHCRT!
At the end of the March report I wondered whether the weather would warm up. Little did I know? And I introduced you to our piggy neighbours. Sadly I have to report that they’ve gone to the great sausage factory in the sky. The hot weather accelerated the growth of plants on the course of the canal, including 1000-odd oak trees on the raw sand of the canal bed which had been exposed last year (Pic 1).
Strangely, given lack of rain the the pit at Willy’s Lock filled with water (Pic.2). I am led to believe that this was due to a leaking hose from the pig enclosure. The water was essential for bricklaying though, but it’s going to have to be removed eventually.
So what have we been doing? We’ve finished off the sand wharf wall. The wall capping is completed, Pic 3 shows Phil putting in the last brick with Bill and Mick looking on (photo by Neil Anderson). After endless ear-bending from Mick we’ve installed six blocks for the installation of mooring rings which will accommodate the endless procession of boats which will soon be making their way through Willy’s Lock. There was infinite debate over making cores for these, with the gloomy ones predicting that ‘they’ll never come out’ being proved largely correct. The competition was won by Mick’s construction held together by cable ties and threaded rod, with a plastic flower pot coming close second. Rumour control says there might be some rings to install in them.
Pic 4 shows Mick and Brian standing to attention, and Pic 5 the completed job, with the fence of Stalag Luft 15 (alias the chicken farm) behind. There are a stack of other jobs to do, including clearing the brambles from the canal bed and spreading the 20tons of aggregate which magically appeared one day, but until Fosseway release a digger and dumper we can’t do that. So we’ve decamped again, this time to Fosseway to see how long 200m of wall takes to build....
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