It is only in the cold light of day that what seemed like a good idea at the time suddenly becomes a nightmare. The lock mooring at ISIS LOCK is a needed facility. Given time it may work but now I have come down the lock and and tried turning (both left and right) I have to say it is an accident waiting to happen. Listening to others who have tried to use it and now having done the turn round out of the lock myself, on Sunday I say it is probably the singularly most ill conceived ‘improvement’ I have yet to see on the canal.
First it never occurred to me that a few weeks ago when I first saw it the ramp to get off the pontoon on to the towpath is actually at the wrong end. Whether you are going on to the river or coming off it you have to walk away from the lock to get to the towpath when you should be walking towards it. If you walk towards the lock there is an unhindered fall into the water. I think a lot of people will do as I am doing in this next picture in preference to walking all the way to the far end. The second bad point is as you can just see behind my raised arm the piling, a bit difficult to see, but how about this pic.
There is only a month between these two pictures and already it was failing in the left hand picture. It was starting to fail before the capping was put on.
A third point is, if ever a floating platform is needed here the whole of West Oxford will be under water no one will give a toss about the boaters on the river. Ergo floating pontoon excessive and OTT. A total waste of money.
What this project needed was a good edge with bollards. what we got was a bad edge no bollards and a pointless floating pontoon. So in fact BW spent hundreds of thousands of pounds on a white elephant.
What I haven’t mentioned are the real boating dangers that this project has created. Tomorrow’s topic!