THE Canal & River Trust has started works to replace two giant sets of lock gates at Newark Town Lock as part of a major winter programme.
As part of the works, which are due to last until mid-March, the trust will be installing temporary dams in order to drain the lock enabling the engineering teams to lift the gates safely into position.
During the works the trust is holding special open days, on February 26 and 27, enabling members of the public to get a behind the scenes tour of the project. Visitors will be able to step down into the drained lock on specially installed walkways to get a close-up view of the works and speak to the trust’s skilled teams. See article regarding trust open days on page 20.
CRT East Midlands regional director Phil Mulligan said: “The works at Newark Town Lock are a great example of the work that we do to preserve and protect the nation’s precious waterways. Our expert teams will be out in all weathers this winter replacing lock gates and repairing historic brickwork.
“We’re really looking forward to welcoming people to our open days in February and enabling them to get a closer look at the works and learn a bit about their local history. It’s not every day that you get to stand at the bottom of a drained lock and we hope that lots of local people will join us.”
The new lock gates have been hand-crafted using traditional methods in the trust’s specialist workshops at Stanley Ferry in Yorkshire. A single lock gate can take up to 20 days to make and has a working life of between 25 and 30 years. In order to be watertight they need to be built very precisely, fitting tightly to the masonry of the lock walls and to each other.
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