25 January 2012

New Chairman Appointed

Society Chairman Neville Kenyon has stepped down from office after 8 years in post. His position has been filled by Alan Stopher, former Project Director of the Huddersfield Canal Company which oversaw the final projects in completing the restoration of the Narrow to through navigation and its re-opening in May 2001. You can read Alan's inaugural report published in Pennine Link under Chairman's Report - Winter 2011.

21 September 2011

200th Birthday Celebration - A Success!

Well, we thought our Festival Event and the Theatre production was a great success; the sun shone as well and everyone seemed to enjoy themselves! Pity about the mud, but it wouldn't be a Festival without some!

More importantly, what did you think? Click below to post your comment now!

The Society gratefully acknowledges funding from the Heritage Lottery Fund which enabled the commissioning of the Oldham Theatre Workshop's production premiered at the event. There was no doubt the theatre performances made a major contribution to the Festival's success and clearly were enjoyed by everyone.

Oldham Theatre Workshop players perform at Diggle tunnel portal.

Oldham Theatre Workshop players perform alongside the boats.

Some of the boats on the summit pound for the festival weekend.

28 June 2011

Obituary - John McLoughlin

Steve Whitby, past MD of HCS Restoration Ltd, writes:

John McLoughlin, 79, died on 23rd April 2011 after a long illness. Having kept in touch with John and his wife Pauline, every year at Christmas, I know that he enjoyed spending time during his retirement with his family and expressed extreme pride in their achievements. He was also a keen supporter of Manchester United and got involved with local amateur league football. He also never failed to tell me how much he loved his time working on the canals.
Following over 30 years experience of tool-making and precision engineering, John started work on the local waterways in 1983, working for the Community Task Force on the Ashton Canal.
In 1984 he was employed as a Supervisor, on a 12 month contract, with the Tameside Canals Development Association, chaired by Frank Ruffley. He had the unique qualification of being our only employee that had any firsthand knowledge of Canals or Government Employment Schemes. Within a few weeks of the project starting, we needed to appoint a replacement right-hand man for me. At the interview, John produced a large file with his diaries and all the paperwork associated with supervising a dozen participants for a full year. He could trace every bag of cement used and each pair of gloves issued! David Sumner and I were suitably impressed and John was appointed Senior Supervisor. The scheme proved popular and grew to 170 full & part-time participants and the association evolved into Tameside Canals Limited and eventually H.C.S. (Restoration) Ltd. John interviewed and appointed over 2500 participants over the years. He was a manager with a no-nonsense approach, but he was always fair and held the respect of all who worked with him. He had a ‘glass half full’ approach to life and liked to work with a smile. The change in emphasis from job-creation to training required that all the staff undertake appropriate training courses. John successfully completed both the NEBSS Certificate and Diploma in Supervisory Management.
It is fair to say that we got very good at ‘scheming’ and our 12 month contracts lasted over 15 years. When John reached his 65th Birthday he was worried that he may be forced to retire, but we were also getting quite good at canal restoration by then and had our eyes on a few more years work with the help of Derelict Land Grants and Lottery cash.
The Canal Society’s achievements and success during the ‘Employment Scheme era’ was founded on the ability of all the team to adapt and exploit every opportunity and consistently deliver good work. We needed a good team and every team manager needs a good right hand man – loyal, hard-working, conscientious, trustworthy and honest. I think I got the best.
Stephen J. Whitby

27 December 2010

Results of 2010 Photo Competition

The results of the 2010 Photographic Competition have now been announced. Below is one of the winning images:

The full results and the winning images can be viewed on this page.

07 June 2010

Treasure Hunt 2010

The Society's Treasure Hunt took place on Sunday 13th June 2010 in and around the Canal at Stalybridge.

11 teams took part and the winners, Mr & Mrs Bradbury, were awarded Life Membership of the Canal Society.

Thank you to all those who took part.

2011, the Bicentenary Year ... instead of a Treasure Hunt, a Bicentenary themed Quiz Night is organised for the 6th October at the Freemason's Hall, Uppermill, starting at 7.00pm.

For further details please contact Claire or Bob on 01457 871800.

04 June 2010

Bi-Centenary Plaque

To mark this year's bicentenary of the Huddersfield Narrow Canal, the society comissioned a limited number of commemorative brass plaques to be cast.

The plaques are now available and cost £10 each with FREE postage and packing. Buy NOW via our online shop or send a cheque (payable to the society) including your delivery address to:

Bicentenary Plaque

Transhipment Warehouse

Wool Road, Dobcross

Oldham. OL3 5QR