It seems that the society is indebted to the Gulf Stream once more.
In a month in which we required dry weather to complete the outstanding earthworks we got just that courtesy of our ally in the upper atmosphere. The upshot is a long run of new channel, shaped and ready for lining. The latter, however, will have to wait until next year.
The main effort was on construction of the offside bank adjacent to the solar farm. During the first work party some 250 tonnes of coarse graded stone was used to the form the channel slope. The back of the bank filled with stockpile material so as to form a haul road. This is likely to be the last bit of bulk earth moving on the project, representing a major milestone. During the second work party the final surface of the bank was formed using MOT type 1 reclaimed from the surcharged banks near the oak tree. Work in this area has occupied eight work parties and has used in total about 3000 tonnes of stockpile and imported material. The before and after pictures show what has been achieved. They are taken from the same place – honestly!
A glance at the work party report of exactly one year ago shows that the main occupation then was placing IBCs on the banks. A year on the emphasis was changed to removing them. This is because the consulting engineers have given permission to remove the IBCs from their positions because settlement on the last two ‘surcharge banks’ at each end of the site has now stabilised. They were moved manually into the nearest compounds where they will await disposal. The removal of the tanks will in turn mean that the two banks will eventually become a source of stone for finishing works elsewhere.
There was the usual array of ‘other jobs’. The addition of rip-rap and soil to the top of the towpath of the section which was lined in September was completed. The trials of methods of anchoring towpath boards on the stone banks were successfully concluded, and a study to check the feasibility of design options in the Crickheath south channel made progress.