Rufford arm reopens for a few days before next stoppage.

A STOPPAGE notice was issued by the Canal & River Trust on October 24 following a inspection by engineers of the towpath side tailgate of lock 2 on the Rufford Arm of the Leeds and Liverpool Canal in West Lancashire.   

The problem was at the top of the gate post where the balance beam is fixed to the gate.

Mindful of the planned stoppage further down the canal for a railway bridge replacement due to start on November 11 and with boaters wanting to leave the branch or get down it to their marinas in Rufford for winter a plan was devised to fabricate a bracket to fix the balance beam to the gate to allow safe operation of the lock.

The Canal & River Trust working in the pouring rain to fit a new bracket to the top of the towpath tailgate lock on Lock 2 of the Rufford Arm in West Lancashire.
Photos: Colin Wareing,

The new bracket bolted in place between the gate and the balance beam.

The bracket was fitted in the pouring rain on Thursday November 7 and the canal reopened to boating traffic on the morning of the 8th giving a few days window for movement on and off the branch.

Narrowboat Burnt Oak leaves Lock 2 of the Rufford Arm on Friday November 8 as another boat At Last waits to enter. Both boats and others that passed through the lock on this nice bright crisp autumn day had been delayed in their travel plans by a few days due to a problem with one of the lock gates here that had been rectified by the Canal & River Trust the previous day.