Foxton Lock Keepers Tales
BBC Radio Leicester Live At Foxton Locks
We were delighted to welcome the BBC Radio Leicester afternoon show to Foxton locks at the end of August. After their presenter Jimmy Carpenter tweeted that he'd never visited, we took the opportunity to invite him out and meet all the colourful characters that live and work around the locks. During the show Jimmy spoke to the site manager Alex Goode as well as seasonal operative Julie Nottingham and volunteer lock keepers Tony Gale, Stephen McKay and Simon Newman. He also got the opportunity to take a boat ride through the locks, visit the Foxton Locks Inn and find out about the historic inclined plane.
Accident At Foxton
A 79 year old woman fell into a lock side pond on Thursday 6th August 2015. She was sucked through the culvert into the lock. Although unconcious, she surfaced in the lock as fortunately as there was a small cruiser in there. She was airlifted to hospital but did not have life threatening injuries.
Sturdy metal grills have now been fitted to each culvert entrance to prevent a recurrence. See below.
A "Quiet Day" !
We were expecting a quiet day at Foxton for our late shift. As we arrived in the car park at 11.30 am we were surprised it was full and there were lots of people about. Strange for a mid week in October.
When we arrived at the bottom of the locks we were met by hundreds of Leicestershire Womens Institute members.
They were celebrating 100 years of Leicestershire W.I. by passing a batton up and down the locks. Now that in itself was no problem, but attempting to hang bunting on the lock mechanisms was not practical of course. So we pointed out the problem and they cheerfully held the bunting which stretched from the bottom to the top of the locks and beyond.
Once they had completed their batton passing it was up to us four lock keepers to ensure several hundred women were guided safely down the locks which we achieved without incident.
I think one boat passed through the locks. So much for a quiet day!
Brenda, Richard, Chris and John
Murder At Foxton?
A local man was showing his American visitors Foxton Locks and explaining that the locks had a significant historical meaning for their family.
I asked what he meant and he explained that an ancestor of theirs was murdered and thrown into the locks. He said he thought it was good for his American visitors to know what disreputable family connections they had!
26 May 2015
"Mad Tuesday" the day after Crick boat show which resulted in a total of 44 boats through the flight that day.
The day started with a queue waiting for me to go down, when I unlocked just before 0800. The queue never went away all day !!!
In fairness to the few boats who wanted to come up, I had to make a cut off point in the "down" queue.
It was when I was halfway down the lower half of the flight with the last in a long string of boats, when I noticed a boat coming down the top half. To say I wasn't very pleased would be an understatement, but I tactfully and politely pointed out the error of the lone boaters ways.
He offered all the usual lame excuses that we've all heard before. He wasn't in the least bit contrite so I did the equivalent of "clapping him in irons" by mooring him up in the centre pound, where he stayed for about an hour and a half until we had cleared the "up" queue.
Most of the traffic that day was for coming down the flight and at one time we had a string of eleven boats coming down, with the queue stretching way past bridge 60.
By five o'clock I was pretty done for and left it to Steve to finish off.