The first work party of the new decade was short in duration and all of the intended tasks were completed in a day and a bit. The main job, the excavation of ten trial holes in the channel between the Oak Tree and Crickheath, was necessary to complete the Phase 2 ground investigation. The opportunity was also taken to complete a number of other outstanding jobs.
The ‘bit’ of the day was the Thursday when three volunteers pumped out the channel. A jolly time was had digging channels in the mud to drain water to the pump. One volunteer took the opportunity to do a bit of freelance ground investigation (see photograph). The day was rounded off by a preliminary attempt to establish the line of the future towpath.
Friday’s work started at the unearthly hour of 0800 with the holes being dug using the 8 tonner. The excavations were supervised by a ground investigation specialist and assisted by the eight volunteers on site. Soil samples were collected and the whole process photographed and recorded. The results will inform the final revision of the channel design.
Additionally the fence on the towpath access at Crickheath was extended. Some minor works on the Crickheath drain completed a productive day.