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Working to restore a rural waterway

October Work Party

In late September we were contacted by the Environment Agency to tell us that a branch of a willow tree had fallen down on the lock island at Cogglesford and to ask, as we were the owners of the land, could we please remove it.  Had the branch been an immediate flood risk, the Environment Agency would have taken responsibility but, in this case, it was down to us to carry out the work.

Initially we went to Sleaford to assess the situation and the photos below show the extent of the work to be done with the branch lying across the tilting weir.  This was obviously a task that had to be carried out by a professional and Andy Martin, our friendly tree surgeon, was therefore contacted to see if he would help out at the next work party in October.

The first task was to clear the lock island of years of undergrowth to give us space to work in what proved to be quite a complex operation.  Andy’s chipper certainly helped to break down the undergrowth ready for spreading on the island later.

Once cleared, the fallen branches were gradually reduced, the smaller pieces being chipped and the larger pieces of timber being put to one side for firewood.  At the end of the day the tree was made safe, the lock island cleared and the chippings spread on the island to prevent the undergrowth growing back.

Many thanks to Andy Martin for his assistance and to all those who helped on the day. Thanks too to the occupants of Cogglesford Mill and the owners of Cogglesford Mill Cottage Restaurant for their hospitality.