Volunteers’ Leamington canal clean up bags massive haul

Inland Waterways Association (IWA) held their latest clean up of a mile-long stretch of the Grand Union Canal in Leamington and the adjoining towpath
Inland Waterways Association (IWA) held their latest clean up of a mile-long stretch of the Grand Union Canal in Leamington and the adjoining towpath
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More than seventy community-minded volunteers have brushed away the winter flotsam and jetsam from a canal in their latest spring clean.

The Inland Waterways Association (IWA) held their latest clean up of a mile-long stretch of the Grand Union Canal in Leamington and the adjoining towpath.

In three hours, the clean-up produced an enormous haul of rubbish with workers under the leadership of Steve Lambert, volunteer coordinator for the Canal & River Trust.

Using grappling hooks and brute force volunteers painstakingly removed over 40 shopping trolleys, including a large one from a DIY store, from the water and silt.

More than half of the rescued trolleys were found under Bridge 42 - the footbridge over the canal between Queensway and Old Warwick Road.

The trolleys, which came from a variety of stores, were intertwined and had been pushed into the silt which proved hard to budge but the most usual item dragged from the canal bed was a fruit machine, minus its cash.

Other different items included a model of Buddha, two motor scooters (a 57 and a 51 registration), a lawn mower, a vacuum cleaner, a complete cycle path sign, tyres, a cassette player, a Charles Wells advertising stand, traffic cones, roadwork signs, guttering, a settee, metal gang plank, and some steps.

This was addition to the usual haul of over 30 bicycles and 28 bags of litter from the towpath and surrounds.

Supported by the IWA who provided all the spring clean equipment, the tonnes of retrieved rubbish into a large haulage hopper, to transport it back to Hatton for unloading. This was manned by volunteers from the CRT volunteer boat moving team

Steve Lambert, volunteer coordinator for the Canal & River Trust said: “We were delighted with the excellent turnout of over 70 volunteers.

“In addition to IWA members, the numbers were swelled by Sydenham scouts, CRT regular volunteers, local boaters and residents.

He added: “It was particular pleasing to see so many people taking pride and interest in their local waterway and towpath.”

To join in email info.warwickshire@waterways.org.uk