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Sunday, 15 April 2012

Mooring project is completed

HOWEVER many marinas are built, many boaters prefer to be moored on the canal with open space either side of their vessel and views of the countryside - but they also demand modern standards and a year of hard work and a substantial investment has now transformed Norbury Wharf's moorings on the Shropshire Union canal.

The quarter of a mile of linear moorings has always been popular and vacancies can be rare - and that's likely to remain the case now it has been brought up to modern standards.

Last year the firms' Managing Director, Simon Jenkins decided it was time to bring them up to date.

He said: "The path beside the moorings had been eroded in places and it could become slippery for our moorers, and we found that more boaters wanted power and water close to their vessels, so we decided to bring the moorings up to date."

That meant a long and difficult task as the path by the boats is bordered by a farmer's field and all the new materials for decking and the pathway had to be wheel-barrowed the quarter of a mile. It has been reminiscent of the sort of work carried out by the navvies who originally built the canal, with little scope for mechanisation.

A year on from last Spring a one metre wide deck runs the length of the moorings with a stone path another metre wide alongside it.

New mooring rings, attached to four foot long steel pins that have been concreted in, now attach the boats and the first eight boats now are now served by water points and will have electricity supplied as well; in the past just four boats had electricity.

The steep bank which runs alongside the mooring will be fenced and landscaped with grass and wild flowers. It will also be netted in places to prevent the sort of erosion that had narrowed the pathway in recent years.

The final stage, this April, will see the building of an access ramp, hand rails, and a new steel security gate.

Simon Jenkins said: "We know offside linear moorings are popular with boaters, who don't like crowded marinas, and we now only have one space left, so if you want it be quick.

"We think linear moorings should be as modern and easy to use as any marina and that's why we've invested a lot of time and money in bringing ours into the 21st century."

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