Tuesday, 5 January 2016

Brunel is Back

Do you remember the great BW scheme to attract businesses to the canal by equipping  some Dutch barges for office use and mooring them in the Paddington  Arm?  This great investment opportunity proved particularly attractive. But not to BW or C&RT as it now is. The barge Brunel, for instance,  cost £250k to buy and fit out. After a few years attracting no business interest  it was towed away to West India Dock in 2009. To navigate the canal bridges between Paddington and Docklands, Brunel had to be ballasted with 20 tons of water. It languished for a further five years in Docklands until it was auctioned in 2014.  It sold for £26k!  Of course this particular event may have missed your attention as during that time  BW was spending £21.5m on Prescott Lock on the Bow Back rivers to enable building materials for the Olympic site to be transported by canal. Only two barges passed through the lock in seven months!

Well, Brunel is back.

When I visited Paddington just before Xmas it was moored at  Sheldon Square.

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