28. Derwent Mouth Lock during its Restoration

28. Derwent Mouth Lock during its Restoration

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I’ve moved down the canal a little bit. I
went down through Swarkestone Lock and on a really nice countryside bit here,
very, very quiet. The main reason for it, even though I had winter mooring up at
the top, the towpath was getting really muddy and I was finding madam with her
four feet, rather than just mine, was trampling mud through the boat and mess
and stuff so, I’ve come up here where it’s nice and dry and it’s fine now.
It does mean I have to walk across a certain field to get to the car, but in a
weird sort of way, I’m actually closer to the car than I was at Swarkestone so,
there’s plus and minuses. So at this time of year the Canal &
River Trust do their winter stoppages. What that means is they completely stop
the traffic going through various parts of the network and that’s purely so
that they can do their maintenance. I’m just walking down the final part of the
Trent & Mersey Canal before it goes out onto the River Trent and at Derwent Lock,
they’re doing maintenance here. They put complete stoppages in, so that they can
take gates out, replace them, put different covings in, deal with the cill
that’s in the bottom of the lock chamber, basically all the things that
they need to do to keep all the boats navigating around the system, during the
rest of the year. Because most of the boats are moored up in marinas like this,
over the winter months, it gives them time to do them. The stoppages are
advertised on the Canal & River Trust website months and months and months in
advance, so people can plan their way around the system. For example, I was
down on the Coventry Canal and I knew I wouldn’t be able to get up past here, to
get up onto the River Soar for example. So I booked my moorings up at Swarkestone.
But it just means that you’ve got to be aware of the surroundings and be aware
of the stoppages. Derwent Mouth Lock was built in 1777 and is the first lock on
the Trent & Mersey Canal. I’ve traveled through it many times and it’s a
well-used lock, allowing boats to travel back and forth from the River Trent, up
onto the canal. With all its use, this winter it’s time for a bit of
restoration and repair. A number of wooden beams or to use their technical
term ‘stanks’ are wedged in place at both ends of the lock, to seal it. However,
water does continue to seep past them, so ash from steam trains is poured into the
water and the seeping flow carries the ash into the gaps, causing it to make a tighter seal. [Gulping water sound] A number of damaged coping stones
have been replaced, with handcrafted stone and once the chamber could be
inspected, brickwork could be repaired. There was some bricks that were actually
missing and there were some that were actually too degraded to be repointed.
It’s a bit of a toss-up basically, you have to do a lot by eye because you’ll look
at things and you’ll think, you know, can I, shall I chop that out, shall I leave it.
Ultimately in things this age, you could just turn around and go, the whole lot
needs chopping out. At which point, you’ve got a new lock. So to keep the historic
structure as intact as possible, the Canal & River Trust need to restore,
rather than replace. As the lock is listed, they’re not allowed to use cement.
Instead, they need to use sand and lime to fix the stones and bricks into place.
Some damage is only visible once the lock has been drained. We found that this
gate was dragging on the bottom a little bit. On further examination, we realised that the actual bracket on the
top, that sits around there, one side of it had snapped. It’s made out of cast iron and it had
snapped and the actual stone itself it had got a fault in it and it had separated. So
it was letting the whole thing move, so that was a job that we hadn’t anticipated.
They’ve dug it out and are waiting for a one and a half tonne sandstone to be quarried
and brought here by boat. The restoration here is due to take around about six
weeks and it’s planned to stop on the 12th of December, even though they have
had extra work to do. And the total cost is around about
£120,000. With hundreds of locks scattered across the country, this time
of year is jam-packed with work and they’ve only got a small window of
opportunity before the canal springs to life again in March. So if you wanted to
come and have a look at this lock, it’s open on the 2nd & 3rd of
December. They’ve got viewings here, the guys and
the team that actually are fixing the lock and preparing it and restoring it,
they’ll be here. As well as up on the canal on the Trent & Mersey, they’ve got
horse-drawn boats going up and down there. So you can see that, of how it used
to be in the olden days and now onto the River Trent and the River Derwent, they’ve got river trips to Sawley Marina.
I’ve included a link in the description below about this weekend’s event. If you
liked this episode, please do give it a thumbs up, leave a comment and until next
time, see you later.

63 thoughts on “28. Derwent Mouth Lock during its Restoration”

  1. Really interesting and informative channel Jono, looking forward to some more boat fit out. Give Molly a fuss for me, what a wonderful companion. Her bond to you is clear to see!

  2. This video answered my questions on what a lock looks like inside 🙂 enjoyed this video 🙂

  3. Hey Jono, excellent video as ever. You should take up winter mooring at Weston on Trent lock. There is water supply and nearby space for your car. Additionally the towpath is always in better condition than at Swarkestone.

  4. I hope all I need is a touch up and a larger joint replacing when I'm anywhere near that old! Nice to see what goes into it. Thanks for taking the time and for sorting it with the Team on the job…

  5. Great vlog Jono. I was so excited to see the canal worker, Philip Moseley. My maiden name is Mosley and wouldn't it be fun if we were related in some way. Keep warm, looking forward to next vlog.

  6. Hello Jono, lovely video an great insight into work carried out by the Canal and River Trust. Similar body here in Ireland called I. W. I. (Inland waterways of Ireland.) The headquarters of this body is in Enniskillen which is in Northern Ireland, and was one of the first cross border initiative,s got to do with the peace process.

  7. A very interesting video, Jono. Thanks for that. Nothing like this where I live, in Western Australia. Mind you, we do have some fabulous rivers and lots of sunshine. 😉

  8. I don’t know if they are available in the U.K. but when I lived in Vancouver which is a very wet place I used to see many dog owners put little booties on their dogs feet which were attached with Velcro so easy to get quickly on and off!

  9. Hi Jono, It's really interesting seeing inside a lock we have passed through a few times.Thank you for showing us. Good Old Molly!! don't they just love having muddy paws!! Look forward to the next vid xx

  10. Thank you for sharing this . I think its wonderful how infrastructure from the past is still being used today, except now its is being utilized for pleasure instead of work:) God bless.

  11. Ahoi, Jono und Molly. Für Molly ist jeder Spaziergang eine Freude und wir hier in der Ferne freuen uns ebenso über Molly. Schöner Aufklärungsartikel und Grüße an die Restauratoren der Schleuse. Viel Freude und vielleicht auch gute Wintergesellschaft im Winterquartier. Gruß Leo https://www.google.de/maps/@52.8594646,-1.4498942,3a,75y,61.94h,63.93t/data=!3m8!1e1!3m6!1sAF1QipPnTTpR9s07rXU1GiDFxBnBT4kv5vVITsXd0ZOr!2e10!3e11!6shttps:%2F%2Flh5.googleusercontent.com%2Fp%2FAF1QipPnTTpR9s07rXU1GiDFxBnBT4kv5vVITsXd0ZOr%3Dw203-h100-k-no-pi0-ya106.262886-ro0-fo100!7i8258!8i4129

  12. Ash from steam trains? Makes me think of Thomas the Tank engine… I never would have guessed that there was enough of this material to actually be used anywhere. Good vid!

  13. Thank you. I enjoyed this blog. It was very interesting. Looking forward to your future uploads. Merry Christmas to you and Molly.

  14. Actually subscribed because your videos are educational & relaxing. Thanks for sharing, don't want to miss any future videos.

  15. Hello from Victoria Australia, why do you need a car? Buy a bicycle, or moped keep it on the boat.

  16. Hi Jono 🙋🏻‍♂️.
    Totally addicted to your series.
    Nothing like this in India.
    We had s great canal around Chennai early last century called the Buckingham Canal.
    Now it is a shambles.
    God bless. Safe Boating.
    I used to breed Labradors ! So Molly is a star !!! God Bless her.
    Btw I'm also a top obedience trainer and winner. I've field trained my Labs too.

  17. Very nice for the mason to speak with us through you about the repair being made, above and beyond what I would’ve expected!! You’ve got to hand it to the people that repair these locks, such a specialistic kind of service and it’s wonderful they are keeping those skills alive. I am so glad that England takes their locks and canals seriously. From my point of view living in the U.S., they are a national treasure. As you posted, these types of repair are very expensive, and it would be great if they have unlimited resources to work on these canals, however it seems as though they do an excellent job with what they have. I am sure it is not an easy or unstressful job. Please make sure these people know that there are people all over the world appreciating their art. Does the canal trust accept foreign contributions?

  18. Thanks for this very informative episode, Jono – incredible that such an old piece of engineering is still going strong 👍👏👏👏

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