Monthly Archives: November 2010

The Canoe Clavacade

Launching off

The Beginning.

This was organised by members and Volunteers of the Maidenhead Waterways Restoration Group(MWRG). The Maidenhead Waterways Restoration Group arranged to have the Bray Cut which becomes the York Stream in the Maidenhead town centre cleared of  overgrowth,rubbish, dead trees and another debris which was restricting the flow of the water. I too part in two of the weekend sessions in August. It was hard but worthwhile work. A sterling fellow volunteer by the name of Stewart and I began the first session my clearing rubbish and other debris from the river by the  bridge at Green Lane. Stewart from the ROTA Group.

We had to be careful as we waded as the bottom was very silty in places. Indeed, I sank it at one point and was firmly stuck. I almost began to panic as I sank deeper and deeper and the water breached my waders!  After extracting myself and emptying my waders I carried on. We pulled out a bathtub, a suitcase (thankfully there weren't any body parts inside), cars seats, car wheels and so much other rubbish like plastic bags and bottles, beer cans and the like. People are really thoughtless  . What really got my goat was a lot of the rubbish  around there.was left by fishermen. You'd think they would respect the environment more.

By the second day we were clearing the section of river called The Cut which flows through the Bray Nature Reserve. A really beautiful place. Here the clearance work consisted mainly of pulling out and cutting trees that had fallen into the river and which were restricting it's course.  We managed to clear a decent 5 metre wide section along here.

Setting off

Setting off from Green Lane

Off we go.

So in thanks and to to make people aware of the work they are doing, the MWRG organised the afore mentioned Canoe Calvadcade. I was lucky enough to be invited by a gentleman by the name of David who had a beautiful 13 foot wooden Canadian canoe. A piece of art really. You can see it the pics. It was a wonderful event with several entire families taking part. There was an inflatable Sevoylar Yukon paddled by a nice lady and her soon. I thought it was quite sturdy and stylish for an inflatable.

We started of at the bridge of Green Lane and followed the river all the way down to Bray where it joins the Thames. We then paddled back up a bit and got off at the Bray Marina who kindly let us use their pontoon and car park. I thoroughly enjoyed my time on the water. We even managed to pick up a football and a pelican cone from the river on the way 🙂

My final thoughts.

I do support he efforts of the MWRG to make this section of water way navigable all the way to the town centre from Bray. But only for canoes and rowing boats. I think motorized boats, even small ones would disturb the wild life and tranquillity of this section of the river. There are a lot of bird species that seek refuge and breeding grounds along this selection of the waterway. This is due to it's current relative inaccessibility to man.

Davids's Wooden Canadian Canoe