Work Party: Sunday 5th March 2023

Work Party: Sunday 5th March 2023

With the canoe hire season on the Swansea canal just around the corner, final preparations are being made to ensure a smooth ‘launch’ (no pun intended!).

The main focus of our work this Sunday was to extend the racking in the Coed Gwilym Park canoe store to enable our large and heavy Canadian canoes to all be stored at a lower level, which will make handling (removing from, and returning to their racks) easier and safer for our hire teams. We knew what we had to achieve, but Alan T and Steve H still put a lot of thought into it before we started!!

Additional bracing and fixings were added to the existing rack structure to increase its rigidity, and this proved to be very successful. Then Steve, Mike F and Alan cut and bolted new rails and uprights to extend the second level out to the wall, and we could soon see our plan was working! Time was against us after all that heavy thinking, so the third level will be extended at the next work party.

Mid-morning tea and coffee gave a chance to catch up with Gill and Gareth T, and Ronnie, who had been busying themselves with other worthwhile jobs along the cut.

Ronnie had returned to her favourite hobby – painting the obelisk panels! With the two red and white metal load plates done, it was the turn of the engraved stone plaques on the other two sides. With some very tidy brushwork the ‘opening commemoration’ plaque was highlighted in red enamel, and the result was amazing, the text just popped out! The second plaque is a job for next time.

Gill and Gareth cleared compacted leaves from the towpath upstream of the Mond lock. Almost half of the path in that area had become covered and slippery. The finished section is so much cleaner and safer, and the leaves have gone to help enrich a flower border in the park.

So it was another day of mixed tasks, but each of them resulted in noticeable and welcome improvements. Even the weather improved by lunchtime, warming from a cold start. Let’s hope for the same (or better) next time we’re out.

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