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News article created on 19 November 2012

Visitors flock to see Aire & Calder lock

Just over 1,000 people visited Bulholme Lock on Sunday as part of our lock gate replacement open day programme.

Members of the public were able to walk along the drained lock on the Aire & Calder Navigation, which stands around 25ft deep and 460ft long, as well as speaking to the construction team behind the work to find out what's required to protect the 250 year old waterway network.

The hidden history has been opened up to the public this winter as part of our £50m spend on conservation and maintenance works across 2,000 miles of waterways in England and Wales, which includes the replacement of 104 lock gates.

Pride and ownership

Mark Penny, the Canal & River Trust’s north east partnership chair said: “Our hope for the open day was to showcase the scale of the work we do on a daily basis as it’s important to us as a relatively new charity for local communities to feel a great sense of pride and ownership in their local waterway. We hope events like this encourage more people to use their local waterway and help us ensure the waterways are protected for another 250 years and beyond.”

Eric Walker, construction supervisor for the Bulholme project added: “People were amazed by the sheer size of the lock chamber and see the newly crafted lock gates. Everyone seemed to really enjoy the experience of seeing the inner workings of the lock and to have so many people visit was rewarding for my team who have been working hard to deliver this project.”