The Society was represented at the Inland Waterways Association (IWA) Waterways Restoration Showcase on board the steam tug ‘Daniel Adamson’ at Sutton Weaver on the River Weaver on Saturday and Sunday, July 29 and 30. In total, ten canal organisations based variously on the River Weaver, Bridgwater and Ashton Canals, and, of course, the Shropshire Union system, had stands exhibiting their present work and plans for the future.
The venue was particularly appropriate for highlighting the Society’s work since the ‘Danny’ was originally built for the Shropshire Union Railways & Canal Company (SURCC) as a tug. It later acquired its noted art deco interior when it was sold to the Manchester Ship Canal Company for use as a directors’ inspection craft.
The Society’s stand was located next to that of the Friends of the Montgomery Canal, an arrangement that has worked well in many recent similar exhibitions. This enables visitors to see the restoration developments right the way along the canal and to understand future plans and the all-important fundraising campaigns.
Over 100 members of the public attended the event over the two days. There was a steady throughput of visitors on the Saturday afternoon, boosted by a party of sea scouts. The hopes of large numbers on the Sunday were dashed by a major incident which brought the nearby M56 to a standstill together with the local A roads and undoubtedly put off many potential visitors.
Les Green, Trustee of the ‘Danny’, said “This is the second time IWA and the ‘Danny’ team have run this event and even if numbers were down, it gave the public that got there, a good understanding of the restoration movement and to meet the people involved. The IWA have not been put off by events and plan to run another event, possibly in 2025, in either Liverpool or at the Anderton Boat lift dependent on the ‘Danny’ cruising itinerary”.
Thanks to Jim Forkin, Chairman, IWA Chester and Merseyside, for help in the preparation of this article.