A head for heights

When I said I planned to get out on the waterways more, this isn't quite what I had in mind!

In my last blog in July I said I wanted to get out and about more on the waterways. When I wrote this I had in mind a leisurely stroll along the canals most local to me – Pocklington and Ripon. So it came as rather a surprise when one fine day in August I found myself 126 feet above the River Dee walking along the Pontcysyllte Aqueduct. This wasn’t part of our original Bank Holiday plans, but seeing that it was en-route to our final destination we stopped for a look.

Having heard various stories about how people had felt walking or boating across the 1,007 foot ‘stream in the sky’, ranging from nonchalant to petrified, I have to admit that I approached the start of the towpath with some trepidation. However, once on my way I was distracted by the views all around and made it across quite swiftly, with a couple of photo stops on the way. Once at the other side we walked down the path to view the magnificent arches that support the structure, and then headed back across. I found myself thinking that I may not be as calm in a boat; maybe we’ll save that experience for another year.

I will make it to one of my local canals this year – my last experience of the Pocklington was on New Year’s Day, and I’m not sure I’ve ever been quite so wet in my life! But we do have the usual type of sunshine here in Yorkshire as well as the liquid variety, and when I do head to the towpath I’ll be able to admire the work of PCAS and Canal & River Trust.

Anyway, that’s enough about my holidays and future plans, back to more work related matters!

As Amanda told you last month, we’ve been on the hunt for Terrapin catchers. Applications have been flooding in, and we’ve even been featured on the BBC. Keep an eye on the website over the coming months to see how we get on catching and re-homing the little snappers.

It’s at this time of the year that we welcome university student volunteers to the Environment Teams for their nine month placements. They become members of the team and take part in the day-to-day work of their colleagues and often lead on projects of their own.

The Environment Team are busy out and about on the waterways carrying out surveys, and we’ve got plans in the pipeline for more during the autumn, and we’ll need your help. We’ll be carrying out discharge surveys and hedgerow surveys. We’re in the process of finalising the details, but if you’d like to be contacted to take part in a survey in your area, please visit our website and register your interest.
(Please note, surveys will not be carried out in all areas of the country, you will be contacted should a suitable opportunity arise).

Hopefully the cloud will lift for the weekend allowing us all to get out and enjoy the countryside, although I’m taking part in a bike ride on Sunday so I wouldn’t mind it to be a little over-cast!

See you again in November!


Last date edited: 16 November 2016

About this blog

Volunteer coordinator

Amanda is a volunteer coordinator for the Technical Team within the Trust. Whether it’s finding a student for a long-term placement with the environment team or assisting the hydrology team with a team of volunteers to count boat movements, she can be counted on to find the right people for the role. Amanda joined the Trust in July 2012 and previously worked as the Volunteer Leader in the East Midlands. She has worked at other charities in people engagement roles, but is at her happiest besides the water.

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