A £50k project to complete essential maintenance on passenger boats from Standedge Visitor Centre has begun.
At the end of the season at Standedge Tunnel & Visitor Centre, the seasonal boat operator’s final job was to take the two 70ft passenger boats through the tunnel and along the Huddersfield Narrow Canal west to Wool Road, Dobcross. This took the crew of four a speedy three days to achieve.
The hard work from the team was all for good reason. The boats were due their winter maintenance which is undergone every two years. But due to the historic nature of the site at Standedge it's not possible to have a crane lift on site and so the call for the boats to travel to the nearest safe location at Dobcross.
The two boats consisting of four parts – two tugs and two modules - were lifted out by a specialist team of contractors and placed on to the vehicles ready for the second leg of their journey to Leicester. There they will undergo an extensive winter maintenance programme which will include a repaint, new lighting and new panels for the glass roof. While there, they will also undergo a safety inspection by the Maritime Coastguard Agency which is an important aspect to ensure compliance with their safety standards.
Claire Atkinson, duty manager, said "It's overwhelming to see the boats at this stage as it has taken months to organise. We hope to have them back in time for the new season in spring 2016, looking brand new and ready to carry our visitors through the tunnel once again."
Watch out for updates on our social media channels for details of their arrival!