Updated – 08-07-09
The stop boards have now been lifted and the canal is now open. The wardens are going to keep a close eye on the embankment in the coming weeks.
The Grand Western Canal otherwise known as the Tiverton Canal in Devon has been closed and stop boards inserted to protect the Swing Embankment located near Halberton. The stopboards have been inserted at Rock and Greenway bridges. It is understood that a farmer noticed a tear caused by some slipage in the embankment around two weeks ago. Devon County Council under advice from a British Waterways engineer have rightly taken the precautionary step to protect the area should the embankment give way. White pegs have been driven in down the bank to monitor any further movement.
It is expected that the canal will be closed to larger craft at this point for a few weeks. Canoes and the public using the footpath can still pass this point. This means trailboats launching at the North Devon Relief road slipway near Sampford Peverall built by the Waterways Recovery Group will be unable to proceed past Rock Bridge. The northern part of the canal is still open but is starting to suffer from weed growth, impeding cruising. The canal was the site of the 2008 IWA National Trailboat Rally. Further information available from the Ranger Service.(Pictures to follow).