Bridge 24 Warwickshire Fly Boats, Long Itchington, Grand Union Canal
From Date: 18/03/2022 16:00
To Date: 17/03/2023 16:00 inclusive
Type: Navigation Restriction
Reason: Structure failure
Is the towpath closed? No
Closest waterway: Grand Union Canal
Starts at: Bridge 22, Bridleway
Ends at: Bridge 60, Blue Bridge
Upstream winding hole: Kingswood Junction
Downstream winding hole: Napton Junction
We’re sorry to say that movement of the towpath wall underneath this bridge has caused the canal width to reduce by 5”, and so we’re having to temporarily reduce maximum beam for navigation from the published 12’6” to 12’.
After a number of incidents affecting widebeam craft, in January 2022 we carried out a thorough investigation and accurate measurements of the wall beneath the water level. From this, we’ve now drawn up a programme to rebuild the towpath side wall, and are planning to reinstate the 12’6” beam of the navigation during the winter stoppage season, and no later than March 2023.
We’ve looked at the opportunities for widening the gap here to 14’, to open up this section of canal to breasted-up narrowboats and other craft currently able to navigate the southern Grand Union. However, initial findings show that this would be prohibitively costly and more disruptive for both canal and road users, requiring extensive engineering works on the bridge itself, with a long stoppage for boats and traffic diversion for cars.
There are also other pinch points on this section of the Grand Union, particularly at Bridge 23 which make it unsuitable for full-width operation.
We are also aware of a recent incident at Bridge 59, Shrewley where the permitted 12’6” beam is unable to be accommodated. The Trust is planning to complete further investigations regarding this restriction.
We’re sorry for the inconvenience this may cause, and will update you when we have more details. In the meantime, boats up to 12’6” can be winded at Napton Junction