South West Herts Narrowboat Project

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Villager News title image

Articles in the local Villager News magazine
[written by one of our volunteers].

November 2011

After two years of people asking “How's the fundraising going?” it’s been a joy to hear people say “We've seen Dick's Folly in Cassio Woods” or “The boat went past us at Tooveys Mill”. These two landmarks are generally the limit of a half day trip whilst a day trip can, with luck and the locks being with you, get you down to Rickmansworth and up to Apsley. Whilst distance and time are two important elements, the strategic location of winding holes are by far the more important factor in order to turn the 73feet of Dicks Folly around.

With an overnight booking those limits can and have been stretched, taking the boat further afield. Over the last month this has been achieved on two separate weekends by firstly the 25th Willesden Scouts and secondly the 9th Roxeth Scouts. Both groups are old friends of the project and took the opportunity for weekend camps afloat.

Alongside those bookings we have continued with our thank you trips for people who have supported us. The second group of Stopgap learners brought gifts of good weather and the window boards that they have made for us from recycled material collected from Watford Recycling and Arts Project (WRAP). These will come in very useful as earlier this month the narrowboat was hit by an angler's line and lead weights which were cast from the far side of the canal.

Whilst the scouts were sailing by, Project volunteers stood in brilliant sunshine in Abbots Langley High Street telling The Tough Ten charity runners where to go! Acting as marshals was our way of saying thank you for the £1,000 donation they gave us last year.

Behind the scenes our committee is hard at work, we now have two interlinked project groups up and running. One for the rebuilding of the landing stage and the other working out the  “spec" for the new boat. These aspirations could not have been achieved had it not been for the Graham Pickett Legacy. However estimates indicate a shortfall of at least £10,000, Therefore our fundraising programme must continue. We appreciate that the economic situation is not rosy, but hope that like us you are passionate about a project that sees itself as a community resource and a vehicle (in all its senses) to encourage people to experience our local waterways.

The second season of ALWAC (Abbots Langley Winter Acoustic Concerts) commenced with sterling musicianship from the group Angels, their unique combination of hurdy-gurdy, bagpipes and piano accordion, got lots of feet tapping and a couple of the audience up dancing in the aisle.

The next concert is Sunday November 13th entitled 'On The Road To Mandalay' it celebrates the work of Rudyard Kipling. Starting at 3pm tickets cost £8 contact or Tim & Lesley Brookes 01923 264536.

Dates for your diary
February 12th 'Pilgrims Way'.
March 11th 'The Oxford Fiddle Group'.

Our thanks to one and all for your ongoing support and we look forward to seeing you soon either on the boat or supporting us at the ALWAC Concerts

Angi Naylor
Project Volunteer


Dick's Folly narrowboat.


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Registered Charity No. 299973.