Hi I am Jo…wife, lover, best friend and soulmate to Keith. Lover of all things to do with nature and the canals. I am passionate about the Waterways and its history.
I hope you will join me in my rambles and do please comment – I love to hear from and meet new people in blogland!
Saturday, 22 January 2011
Foxton Volunteer Day.
It's Saturday and brrrr it was cold with a very chilly wind which would freeze anyones bones.
Last evening, before settling inside the boat for the evening, I took this lovely photo of the sunset hitting the trees above Foxton. They look like they are painted in Gold.
This morning as I said was cold but at least it was dry. Today British Waterway's (BW) were holding an open day at Foxton Locks, for people from all walks of life to volunteer to become lock keepers and educational voluteers, where you get to chat to the public.
Having done all the usual morning jobs, Keith and I headed off up the locks at 9.45am to take a sneaky peek at what was going to be going on. I was interested to see how many people would actually turn up to volunteer, because this new scheme is not going down well with many. It has all come about because as of next year British Waterways will become a charitable trust and will therefore be in need of volunteers to do many of the jobs, Bw staff had been paid to do in the past. (CLICK). As you can imagine this has not gone down well with many people. I am however willing to keep an open mind at the moment.
Setting up in the Stable block were Karen and Sarah. Karen was recruiting volunteers for BW and Sarah was looking for volunteers to help with WOW (Wild About Waterways) (CLICK). Bill and Jez the lock keepers were on hand to chat to the public and to help with any boat wishing to go down the flight. They were hoping that if a boat was to go down this would give them an opportunity to show the new volunteers what their job would entail. As it was no boats went down or up the flight when they were required, so one was drafted in later in the day. Before the public arrived to ask about volunteering to become lock keepers, Karen from BW laid out information packs and plates of biscuits for anyone who wanted to take part. The first to volunteer to sample the biscuits was this Robin, who was cheeky enough to make straight for the Chocolate Chip biscuits without as much as a by or leave.It has to be said it was freezing cold if you stood around for to long, so I kept on the move whilst watching proceedings. Across the valley heading towards Gumley, the local hunt were out on horseback galloping across the countryside, but there was not a hound in sight or the sound of the hunting horn. At lunchtime we headed back to the boat for some lunch and to get warm. After a soup and crusty bread lunch, Keith went back up the flight, whilst I delivered coal to one of our regular customers. I then donned my down jacket, hat and gloves and set off back up the flight, to find more people asking about the volunteer jobs available. East Midlands Today arrived towards the end of the session with a camera man and an interviewer to film NB Winds of Change going into and out of the top lock and to interview BW staff Jez, Karen and a member of the public who has signed up to become a volunteer lock keeper. On the whole I think it went well and everyone concerned seemed happy with the way the day went, even if they were freezing their socks off. Keith and I decided that with the film crew there we would head off back to the boat, because the event was almost over.