This month, the Canal & River Trust begin a £40,000 project to repair a lock near Thatcham on the Kennet & Avon Canal.
Engineers will be painstakingly repairing Widmead Lock over the next five weeks, using over 3,000 bricks to rebuild the walls of the lock. This project is part of a £400,000 programme of works to improve the canal this winter that will also include replacing giant lock gates and rebuilding historic canal walls. It comes at a time when more people than ever are using the canal to boat, run, cycle and fish, amongst a host of other activities.
The Kennet & Avon Canal is 87 miles long and passes through some spectacular landscapes as it winds through Berkshire, Wiltshire, and into Bath.
Adam Barnes, Canal & River Trust supervisor, says: “The Kennet & Avon Canal is an amazing space, somewhere to escape to and relax and slow down. As the charity that cares for the canal, this is a good example of the type of work we have to do to keep it in top condition for the thousands and thousands of people who use it.
“It’s intricate work, with more than 3,000 bricks being set carefully in place, and we aim to finish before Christmas. The lock will be closed while we do the work, but the remainder of the canal is open, so I’d encourage everyone to come and discover all it has to offer.”