Things are getting back to normal for boaters in the Wigan area this weekend.
The main Wigan Lock Flight (Locks 65 to 85 of the Leeds and Liverpool Canal) re-opened after being closed since the New Year. This lengthy stoppage was to enable additional lock ladders to be installed.
Recently the lower locks in Wigan, plus the two Poolstock locks on the Leigh Branch, have been padlocked because several pounds had been drained by vandals, including the mile long pound that passes Wigan Pier.
BW were unable to re-fill these pounds quickly because of a problem with the Scholes Feeder.
The pounds are now almost back to their usual levels and the use of the lock flight will help by sending additional water down into Wigan.
BW has not yet issued a re-open notice for the lower locks but several local boaters have told Pennine Waterways that boats are now on the move again.
This will be a huge relief to waterways businesses such as Kittywake Canal Cruises, who operate a trip boat from Wigan Pier, who have had to turn away disappointed parties who had booked trips, and working boats Ambush and Viktoria who deliver diesel and solid fuel to boaters moored along the canal.
BW is urgently repairing the sluices of Scholes Feeder, which is essential to top up the water levels in Wigan since there are locks going downhill in two directions from Wigan Junction near Henhurst Bridge, which could potentially leave the junction pound empty.
The Way It Should Be: Wigan Pier area with water.