Wednesday, 2 May 2012

It is with great regret that we have had to cancel the Boat Gathering in South Kyme this weekend.  Due to the recent floods the Environment Agency have said that they cannot guarantee river levels will be stable and safe for boats.  Events at the Festival in South Kyme will still take place as normal.

Friday, 6 January 2012

2012 Boat Gathering and South Kyme Village Festival

Boat Gathering and South Kyme Village Festival

May 5th & 6th 2012.

There will be a boat gathering on the Sleaford Navigation at South Kyme over the weekend of the early May Bank Holiday which will coincide with the village festival. Events will include scarecrow competition, medieval re-enactments, stalls, live music and general conviviality. There will be no charge to visiting boats but we do ask that they book in by contacting Steve Hayes on 01522 689460 or Further details can be seen on

Saturday, 24 December 2011

December Work Party

December 18th saw the last work party of the year. A slightly low key affair possibly due to Christmas shopping or the fact that it was very cold.

More progress was made reducing the tree upstream of the bywash that was started in November. However, our carefully planning in November came unstuck. We had used the Tirfor to pull the roots out onto the side of the river and leave them to dry making them lighter and easier to move. This was spoiled by the river level rising and flooding over all the area where we had been working. We therefore spent quite a bit of time using the Tirfor to move those roots before starting on the tree again.

The lack of available light stopped us finishing the job but there is only a small amount left to do next time. Just one branch and some trimming of ones that we have already cut off on previous occasions.

In the meantime Earnest was joined by Christine who was carrying out some volunteering work as part of her University course. They were working on the old bywash structure removing the remains of an old bush and it's roots. They also removed the last part of the original structure to prepare for the new foundations which will be necessary for the new walls and floor of the rebuilt bywash and weir.

Wednesday, 16 November 2011

Sleaford Navigation Trust Newsletters

As an experiment, we have posted recent editions of the newsletter on; to download each one follow the links below:

Nunber 33 Winter 2010

Number 34 Spring 2011

and the latest issue, Number 35 Winter 2011, which will be distributed shortly by the usual means. 

Hopefully earlier editions will be posted in due course, to provide an SNT news archive!

Tuesday, 15 November 2011

November Work Party

On the 13th November the Trust held the monthly work party at Haverholme. The main aim of the day was to remove a Willow Tree that was starting to grow over and down into the water, the additional problem being that these branches were starting to root. First we needed to get decent access to the tree so numerous small branches were removed leaving any that were rooting with enough sticking up to get the Tirfor chain round. Then once the area was clear then the larger branches could be attacked. The final task was to remove the roots, this involved using the Tirfor winch. With the Tirfor firmly anchored to a tree trunk then the wire rope could be pulled out and chains fixed round the root, then it was simply a case of pumping the handle to pull the roots out!
The main problem then was to move the roots as the ground around them was so waterlogged that they very heavy so the decision was made to leave them till next time when, hopefully, they will have dried out sufficiently to be able to be moved.
In the end because of the time of year we were unable to complete the work due to lack of light. So next time the task will be to finish off trimming the tree and then moving the roots, maybe even a bonfire!

Tuesday, 23 August 2011

South Kyme - Bigger & better

The sun shone and the crowds came to the May Day celebration at South Kyme on the Sleaford Navigation. The boat gathering attracted twenty-two boats from around the inland waterways but this year the celebrations in the village were on a grander scale than ever before and Sunday saw thousands of visitors make their way to the field near the historic Kyme Tower. Access to the area was made possible by kind permission of Simon Lamyman and the tower provided a wonderful backdrop for the re-enactments of the Knights of Skirbeck, medieval tents and stalls and the demonstrations by the Northcote Heavy Horse Centre.

The display in the church of wedding dresses worn over the years by local brides proved very popular on this Royal Wedding weekend and costumes of a different kind were on show on the many entries for the best scarecrow competition. I have to say that judging this is getting to be more and more difficult so I asked Sue Sowerby and Beth Line for their help in making a decision. Finally we agreed that a very athletically posed cricketer with his little yellow plastic friend “Out for a duck!” had to win first place but overall the standard of entries was very high indeed and all were to be congratulated.

Over 200 yellow plastic ducks took part in a race on the river but they were in grave danger of falling foul of the one drawback of the weekend, high wind. Instead of going downstream as might be expected, the wind actually propelled them upstream.

The boaters’ church service this year was taken by Rev. Molly Langridge whose father Vivian Bird was the author of a well known waterway related book, “By Lock and Pound”. Molly’s lifelong love of waterways shone throughout the service and her reminiscences certainly made the packed congregation smile.

The whole weekend was packed with activity and the enthusiasm of the village and Parish Council was infectious. South Kyme entered and won the Best Kept Village Competition for the first time last year and there is real pride in that achievement. They very much want the Navigation Trust to be part of their celebrations and welcome the visiting boats and their crews to the village. Together we are now looking at ways of improving access to the water for all users and considering the provision of a turning point or “winding hole” in the village to make South Kyme a viable weekend destination for boaters. Plans have already started for next year’s celebrations so watch this space!

Monday, 17 January 2011

Coming events

Slea Boat Gathering and Village Celebrations

Our annual boat gathering on the Slea will be held in South Kyme over the weekend of 30th April - 2nd May 2011. The village celebrations this year will, apparently, include not only the annual scarecrow contest but also a Medieval Fair and Hog Roast. It should be a great event! Contact Steve Hayes for details at either or phone 01522 689460.

Lincolnshire Branch IWA are promoting a couple of events on new and little used waterway in the county.

Black Sluice Navigation Cruise

This event will be held over the weekend of 13th - 15th May 2011. Take this opportunity to cruise on the areas newest restored navigation, reopened in 2009 after nearly 50 years of being inaccessible to boats. For this weekend a special licence, discounted to £5.00 has been negotiated.
Contact Dave Carnell for details, phone 01469 530138

The Witham Navigable Drains

Explore this under used and fascinating system of navigable drains in the Boston area. They were originally built for drainage but were later improved by the engineer John Rennie for use as a transport system for agricultural cargos into Boston and beyond and also importing coal to the area.
Have the chance to explore the system with a group of local boaters over the late May Bank Holiday weekend, 28th - 30th May 2011. Boldly go where few boats have ventured before and have the satisfaction of hearing people say 'we don't often see boats up here'!
Contact Dave Carnell for details, phone 01469 530138