One of our first events of the year took place last weekend, with a Easter Activity Challenge to mark the start of the bicentenary year and the return of the Pocklington Canal summer boat trips. Despite the grey skies, many families wrapped up warm to join us on Easter Sunday.
The week before Easter didn’t start too well for me (Lizzie, the Project Officer) with news that the Pocklington Canal Amenity Society trip boat was stuck at Barmby Barrage, due to the Lower Derwent Valley being in flood. The absence of the trip boat at an event to celebrate the start of the Sunday boat trip season would be rather obvious!
Fortunately, my spirits improved on Thursday with the news that the boat was on its way home to Melbourne Arm moorings, having received a bit of TLC at Goole boatyard. Our Easter Sunday and Monday events were back on!
Phil Taylor from Eco Sapien Environmental Education joined us on the day with a wonderful pair of activities – a Wildlife ‘Egg’ Hunt and Build A Nest. Kids enjoyed finding the eggs (photos of eggs in Tupperware boxes hidden around the site) then matching them with their parent (some beautifully painted cardboard props). A toad, leaf cutter ant, great created newt, tansy beetle and long-tailed tit (my favourite!) were all in the mix.
Build A Nest went down very well, with many siblings working as a team to construct a nest for the eggs, cunningly disguised as potatoes! Whilst one egg was sufficient to pass the test, we had lots of record breakers on our hands as potatoes, sorry eggs, got piled up to see who had the strongest nest!
In preparation for the event, earlier in the week Year 10 work experience students from St Mary’s School in Leeds joined myself and the Desmond Family Canoe Trail Officer for a bit of art and craft. The students created signage and some beautiful art panels which formed part of the ‘Mystery Word’ trail. This series of four questions, each with a choice of three answers, gave participants a four letter anagram to solve, using the first letter of each answer. The answer wasn’t BOAT as a few people tried to guess! (I'll keep the real answer a secret...)
The Pocklington Canal Amenity Society boat trip, aboard the New Horizons, was a very popular element of the day, and a ride aboard (and a chance to steer!) gave kids the last ‘tick’ on their Easter Cards which granted them the prize of a chocolate egg.
Whilst we had an enjoyable day on the Sunday, we did decide that even our hardy Yorkshire audience might object to the bleak weather forecast for Easter Monday and so we cancelled the second day of activities. This turned out to be a wise choice, as the weather certainly did match up the forecast!
New Horizon Boat Trips - Sundays and Bank Holidays
Pocklington Canal Amenity Society run afternoon trips lasting aroun 30 minutes every Sunday and Bank Holiday between Easter and the end of October. Trips depart from Melbourne Arm Visitor Moorings, and run between 12 noon and 4.15pm. The trips are free, but donations are welcomed. Well behaved dogs are allowed onboard. The boat seats 12, so there may be a short wait for the trip. Please park in the village and walk along the private road to the left of the pub.
Pocklington Canal – a gem in the landscape has been supported by a grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund. Thanks to National Lottery players, we will be restoring Church Bridge and Swing Bridge No 7, restoring the special wildlife habitats along the canal and running a series of exciting community events and activities to showcase the rich heritage of this idyllic rural East Yorkshire canal.See more blogs from this author