After a gap of two years, Sleaford Navigation Trust were delighted to be able to hold their annual Boat Gathering in South Kyme over the Early May Bank Holiday weekend. Problems with flood control and a silt bar in the entrance of Taylors Lock had resulted in the cancellation of the two previous rallies but this year, thanks to the de-silting undertaken by the Trust, fourteen boats were able to take part in the celebrations in South Kyme.
The village gave the visitors their customary warm welcome with activities arranged in the Hume Arms, a scarecrow competition, duck race and village hall table top sale. This year the Sleaford Paddlers joined in the fun and gave people the chance to try canoeing. The intrepid even had the opportunity to attempt to control a coracle.
Traditionally, boaters are invited to take part in a special service in the parish church, St Mary & All Saints, taken by the vicar, Rev. Mike Rose. This year was made very special by the presence of the Rt. Reverend Christopher Lowson, Bishop of Lincoln, who blessed the visiting boats before travelling to the church by water, on the front deck of narrowboat Wigford. His enthusiasm for Inland Waterways and life "in the slow lane" were reflected in his sermon and his warmth and humour were much appreciated.