If anyone has read my blog you will probably have guessed I love to walk, especially out

in the countryside, by the river or canal, in fact anywhere where I can be “one with nature.” Yesterday I had to go into the next town so I went along the canal, something I always do. Getting on the canal in Ashton and then walking up onto the first lock I noticed something was missing; the water.

Usually the canal is full as there are many narrow boats travelling up and down the canal which is great especially now the Huddersfield Narrow Canal has been re-dug out and pretty much follows it’s original path through Tameside and beyond.

I stood there for a few minutes surveying the scene before me with amusement wondering what had happened then noticing that what little water was left was quickly travelling through a sluice gate. I figured that someone had gone through the lock with their canal boat and had forgotten to close the gate properly, but what do I know? I have never been on a narrow boat before so don’t know the etiquette and fineries for narrow boating.

I  travelled on along the now well drained canal taking some pictures, looking for any dead fish and wondering who could have done this? The water level did rise a little in the middle part of the canal which is also the deepest so canal boats can travel safely up and down the canal, but it was moving quite fast and figured it wouldn’t be there for much longer if the second lock was locked stopping any water travelling into the lock in question.


I got to the 2nd lock and walked up the slope and looked. This part of the canal was ok and full so carried on, figuring someone had forgotten to close it off properly. Speaking to some fishermen fishing the second lock 1 said that some unscrupulous people around the area had drained the lock, netted it and taken all the fish out, probably to eat or “sell

      them on.”

Well that did make me think as I saw only 3 small fish in the remaining water, and I know there are some nice fish in that part of the canal including pike, carp and skimmer bream.

Did that happen I wonder or has someone forgotten to close the gates? Maybe that stretch of the canal has been drained for a reason, like removal of the rubbish one could see scattered everywhere in the canal? I hope to find out but I won’t hold my breath. If it is some callous people then I hope they get some strange disease or something. Destroying the countryside, rivers, lakes and canals in my eyes is something we should look upon with disdain and punish the people in question. Again I won’t hold my breath.