Volunteer lock keepers wanted!

All plain sailing: Debbie and Steve assist a solo boater through Star Lock in Stone
All plain sailing: Debbie and Steve assist a solo boater through Star Lock in Stone

Do you love your local canal and want to help look after it? The Canal and River Trust are recruiting volunteer lock keepers for the 2014 boating season – and it’s not too late to apply.
Candidates will enjoy spending time outdoors while meeting people in their local community. The roles cover the main boating and visitor season from March to October and each volunteer commits to one or two days a week. No previous experience is needed as full training is given and each volunteer wears a Canal & River Trust uniform to identify them to visitors and boaters.
Lock keepers have been a fixture on Britain’s canals for over 200 years and today’s volunteer lock keepers provide a friendly face on the modern waterways assisting boaters through the locks, maintaining the area on the towpath around the lock and answering questions from visitors and inquisitive tourists.
The volunteering scheme was launched soon after CRT took over the running of the canals in summer 2012. Of the 250 volunteer lock keepers recruited to date, 12 are based in Stone. With over 5,000 lock movements a year, our Central Shires region is the busiest part of the English and Welsh network.
Ed Moss, volunteering manager for the Canal & River Trust, comments:

“We had an amazing response from the public last year to our recruitment drive and 99% of volunteers enjoyed it so much, they’re coming back again this summer.
Working outdoors and staying fit have always been incentives for people of all ages as well as giving them a sense of pride knowing they are part of an army of people helping to protect this 200 year old place for people and wildlife. The enthusiasm and dedication of our volunteers is magnificent and they are crucial in keeping our waterways alive for the thousands of people who walk or boat along them.”

If you would like to become a Volunteer Lock Keeper or are interested in other ways to volunteer on your local canal or river visit: http://canalrivertrust.org.uk/volunteer or phone the Canal and River Trust on 0303 040 4040.