Pyrford Lock with the Bank Holiday sun trying to come out
With the grass growing at such a furious pace, I sometimes feel the need to step back and remember how good it looks when it’s been cut. However briefly. Like today.
With Pyrford Lock being one of the busiest on the Navigation (it’s right next to a busy pub and on a popular dog walking route) you have to get up pretty early to get the mower, edging iron and strimmer working to not get in the way. With the lock being a popular spot for boaters, gongoozlers, picnics, bikes and dogs, however hard I try I always seem to disturb someone’s peace. On a day like this, with an ‘office’ like this a little bit less time in bed in the morning is really not a hardship and believe me I know how lucky I am.
It’s great that most of our river and towpath users take great pride in keeping the Navigation clean and tidy, disposing of their rubbish carefully and even picking up the odd runaway crisp packet. We also have staff and dedicated regular volunteers that do their bit to clear the inevitable litter that finds its way into and alongside the river. It all helps to make the Wey Navigation a beautiful hidden gem of the waterway system. We really do appreciate all the volunteer hours and days we receive here, we couldn’t function without them.
In more urban areas litter can become a problem and in Guildford town centre the towpath attracts more rubbish than our more rural sections and requires more attention to keep it looking pristine. When Marks & Spencer staff offered to come out for the day and litter pick with us, we were more than happy to accept their help. The 23 volunteers from 5 local stores joined our Lengthsman Richard and Chris to blitz an area of central Guildford. They collected 17 bags of rubbish, over half of which we were able to recycle and everything from cigarette butts to a suitcase.
This is the third year running that they have come out and helped us clean up and with the extra pairs of hands we really manage to get into those nooks and crannies. The event is part of the national “Big Beach and Waterways Clean-up” campaign, so we are just one of the lucky waterways that have received help this week. The projects are all funded by the 5p carrier bag charge in M&S stores when you forget your reusable ones.
Some of the M&S team enjoying the sunshine after their hard work.