Saturday, 28 January 2012

Bingley Locks drained for repair

Bingley Five Rise Locks are the only Grade I Listed lock on the Leeds & Liverpool Canal. They will be open (today and tomorrow) for visitors to observe during the replacement of four of its gates (the other gates were changed in 2000 and 2006). There will be the chance to take a tour deep inside into the locks as well as chat to British Waterways’ experts about how this skilled operation takes place.

The gates have been in place for over 25 years now completing there working life and will be replaced by new ones that have been made of oak to exactly the same dimensions and design. The gates have been made at Stanley Ferry Workshop in Wakefield which is one of only two workshops in the country.

The water is kept out of the lock chamber using stop planks which are laid on top of each other to form a watertight seal. Whilst the lock is drained to remove the gates, the stoppage team will take the opportunity to carry out repairs to the lock chamber, carry out any repairs to the ground paddles that are required as well as any other repairs which need making.

Unfortunately when we arrived at the top lock at 11.00 am this morning there was a long queue of people waiting to go into the drained locks. We decided not to queue.

I  might try and go early tomorrow morning to see if I can beat the crowds.

The photograph shows part of the queue.


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