FORMER British Waterways work boat Pentland took to the sky – twice – in a move to her new home on Friday March 3.
Walker’s of Tuxworth craned her on to a transporter at the Canal & River Trust’s yard at Newark for a 30-mile journey to the Erewash Canal Preservation and Development Association’s Langley Mill headquarters.
However the most spectacular sight was when she was craned off into their boatyard, accessed through a gateway between trees at the side of the lock.
ECPDA volunteers looked on as the two expert drivers from Walker‘s manoeuvred across the main Derby Road into the entrance ready for the operation which was successfully completed with their help and accomplished with only a few broken twigs.
Also watching was Josh Hall from Kirkby-in-Ashfield paint manufacturer Dacrylate Paint Ltd which is donating the paint for the project.
Canal & River Trust plant and equipment manager Mick Carrington, who oversaw the operation at the Newark end, said that Pentland was built in the late 1970s and had spent most of her working life in the East Midlands on the River Trent and Erewash Canal.
The 37ft work boat had come up for refurbishment about 12 months ago but on inspection, it was deemed uneconomical to go ahead with this. Pentland was going to be put through one of the trust’s dispersal sales but they were approached by ECPDA and a sale was agreed.
“It will be great to see her put back to good use,” he added.
ECPDA Chairman Norman Cornwell said that as well as repainting, the project will involve rebuilding the engine and replacing some of the steelwork. He said that Paul Barber of PJ Barber Boatbuilder Ltd of Sheet Stores Basin, Long Eaton, has offered some surplus steel plate and they are hoping that other local businesses will help with items such as welding rods.
Work had already started as we went to press. Norman told me: “We have taken out the engine, the rudder and the tiller for refurbishment and we would like to have Pentland up and running for the canal festival at Trent Lock in June.”
Once completed, she will be used in the association’s restoration and canal maintenance work.