On a lovely Tuesday morning – chilly but bright – we assembled in Coed Gwilym Park to tackle a number of tasks and to bid farewell to Kevin Phillips, Area Operations Manager for the Canal and River Trust, who is retiring after thirty-seven years of service.

The first task was to continue to extend the bank repairs alongside the golf course. After tea, more of the old wall was exposed, ready for refurbishment next week.

 Mix 1  Mix 2
 Bags 3  Bags 4
 Bags 2  Bags 7
 Dig 1  Dig 3

Annette, ably assisted by Bob, tried out a selection of outriggers, the intention being to find a way of stabilising safely the canoes for our less able-bodied customers. The “Can Do Canoe” project is moving smartly along.

 Canoe 1  Canoe 2
 Canoe 4  Canoe 5

Ronnie and Martin planted some new plants and generally tidied-up the recently relocated garden in front of the canoe store.

 Garden 1  Garden 2

Yun Yun, Gill, Sue and others continued to rub down and paint the railings. That Hammerite gets everywhere, including on Anna and Cerys!

 Paint 2  Paint 3
 Paint 5  Paint 7

John and Mike honed their throw-line skills. Getting that pesky rope back in the bag is worse than herding cats.

 Throw Line 1  Throw Line 2

And now to the main business of the day: Gordon said farewell to Kevin and wished him well in his retirement. Kevin has been extraordinarily kind and helpful to the Society. He will be sadly missed but promised to stay in touch with us, even possibly enrolling for a Waterway Recovery Group camp. Mark Evans, the recently appointed director of the Wales and South West Region of the Canal and River Trust, was on hand to join in with the celebrations.

 Tea 6  Tea 7
 Tea 9  Tea 11