April 1968

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Newsletter No. 11April 1968.


Easter Boat Trip
We hope that as many members and friends as possible will join us on GOOD FRIDAY for the start of our boat trip on the River Wey.

We are meeting above New Haw Lock, near the entrance to the Basingstoke Canal from the River Wey Navigation, at 2p.m. on Good Friday. This is to be a big publicity event, with the Press, radio and television invited. Byfleet Boat Club, Wey Cruising Club and a Thames yacht club are joining us on this occasion.

If you have a boat and trailer, then please bring them along. Boats can be launched at the excellent new ramp at New Haw Lock on Friday morning, and helpers will be welcome. Wo hope for a big gathering of boats at the entrance to the Basingstoke Canal to demonstrate the number of boats which would be willing and able to use the canal if it were fully navigable.

As far as possible, members will be carried on the boats available. Dick Snell is busy working on his 20 ft. trip boat for this purpose. Boat owners who would like to come can get a two-week licence for the Wey for unpowered boats for 15s. inclusive of lock charges, or a yearly licence at 15s. plus 9d per lock. We may be able to tow some unpowered boats.

Non-boating members who would like to join for the fun of it are very welcome. Cars can be left by the slip road at New Haw Lock, or at Parvis Bridge, West Byfleet (using the small canal-side yard adjoining Wakefields panel beating shop); it is a short walk to the Basingstoke junction along the towpath from Parvis Bridge. Parking facilities are also available at the Anchor, Wisley, and at Newark Bridge, both of which lie along our route. But we must ask car owners to collaborate and make their own arrangements for collecting cars on route.

We will spend Good Friday night somewhere in the region of Newark or Papercourt locks - or Triggs Lock, Send, if we get that far. Again members accompanying us should either bring tents or make arrangements for a lift to the nearest bed. All boats should arrive in Guildford by mid-day on Easter Saturday. We will moor at Mill Mead, Guildford, and set up the society's stand, remaining in Guildford during the afternoon. Helpers and visitors will be welcome.

The boats then leave Guildford by about 6p.m. to cruise towards Godalming, joining the Wey Cruising Club at their "fitting out" party at thd Parrot at Shalford or some other suitable hostelry in Godalming.

On Easter Sunday we begin the return cruise down stream towards New Haw, aiming to arrive at New Haw on the Monday morning to get the boats out and away. Boat owners wanting to take their boats out on the Sunday may like to know that there is another launching slipway where the A.320 crosses the river at Stoke, near Guildford.

We hope that members will make every effort to join us for part, if not all, of this cruise. If you intend to come - with or without boats - please contact Mr. Les Harris, 198 Hermitage Woods Crescent, St. John's, Woking, so that he has a rough idea of how much support there will be. This will also enable us to make arrangements for towing and carriage on boats of passengers.

Wey licences can be obtained from: The National Trust, River Wey Navigation, Guildford Wharf, Friary Street, Guildford.

One point about the cruise for boating members: we hope that all on the cruise will treat any anglers they may encounter with respect.
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Working Parties
Sunday, April 21:There will be a working party at Greywell. We have permis≠sion from Hampshire County Council to trim parts of the towpath which form a public footpath. Please contact the secretary if you want to join this working party, by April 14. This is a "token" working party and care must be taken that we do not encroach on Canal Company property. The secretary will send details of where we will meet and the time of starting.
Sunday, May 12: We have permission from the Army to clear out Cowshott Stream. Again, if you would like to come, contact the secretary and full details will be sent. Please let the secretary know if you want to join us by May 5.

Boat Trip
There will be a members' boat trip on the canal at Ash, probably commencing from Ash barge yard on May 4 and 5. Details will be announced in the next newsletter, but please make a note of the date now. We hope to get publicity for our work at the barge yard and put it to use.

Surrey Show
We have booked a site for the Surrey Show which is held at Guildford in June. We hope to get a lot of new members and publicity from this, but we will need help to man the display we will set up there. Please can we have volunteers AS SOON AS POSSIBLE as tickets have to be arranged. Anyone helping is entitled to a stallholder's ticket at 5s. each, and car parking tickets are also available at 5s. each.

You will, of course, have time to see the rest of the show. Could you please enclose a remittance with your offers (to Mrs. Woolgar please) so that we can arrange to purchase tickets?
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Jumble Sale at Brookwood on March 9
Mrs. Woolgar would like to thank Messrs. Sweet, Snell, Adlam, Mr. and Mrs. Callaghan & the Walker family for collecting jumble; Mrs. Harris for providing cakes etc. to sell; and Messrs. Adlam, Diamond, McPhial, Smithers, Fletcher, Light, Snell; Mesdames Harris, Walker and Humpidge, as well as the committee members for their help at the actual sale. We raised £33.12s.6d. for society funds which was extremely satisfactory. There have been a great deal of jumble sales in the area, and it was only by persistent jumble collectors that we managed to collect so much. A rag and bone man took what was left at the end of the sale, and we nearly lost Mr. Snell along with it: he took a great fancy to tho rag and bone man's lorry.

After heaving a sigh of relief that the Brookwood sale is over, Mrs. Woolgar is now looking for a suitable hall for the next one - possibly in November. It is suggested we hold it either at Farnborough or Byfleet. Is there a kind hearted member in one of these areas who is willing to have their home turned into a jumble collecting centre about a week before the event? Please contact Mrs. Woolgar if you are - as soon as possible please - as halls are booked up well in advance.
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Postmen:- to deliver newsletters in Woking, Knaphill, Frimley, Guildford and Crookham Village. This saves us vast sums in postage.
Working Parties:- people to act as leaders to join a rota.
Tape Recorder Fanatic:- to prepare a tape to accompany a standard slide lecture.
Naturalist:- to lead a projected ramble, pointing out items of interest.
Lock Keepers:- The National Trust have again asked us to man Bowers Lock during summer weekends. Please let secretary know if you can do a weekend's lock duty. Scroungers:- Have you got, or can you get, any "come in handy" stuff. Items we have in mind include: bricks, wood, paint, tools, odd lumps of furniture. These items can be stored at Ash Vale - NOT Connaught Crescent - until required. In connection with the furniture, please have a word with the Secretary before visiting jumble sales, as we have no need for grand pianos, cookers and beds.
Newsletter helpers:- Someone who can staple and fold newsletters about every 4-6 weeks. We are now sending out 400 newsletters at a time.
Finally - can anyone get thousands of postage stamps for nothing????
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The Redjacket and Bluejacket were barges of almost identical design. Redjacket was 13ft. 2in. wide by 72ft. 6in. long, and 5ft. 2in. high in the side. She was built by Costains at Berkhamstead in 1909. Bluejacket was the same length, but 13ft. 6in. wide and 5ft. 1lin. high in the side, built by the same yard two years later in 1911.

Both craft would carry 70 tons of coal under hatches below Weybridge and they carried 50 tons of round timber down from Crookham in the first World War.

The Redjacket was rebuilt at the Ash Vale Yard in the late 1920s and the BlueJacket had extensive repairs at a yard in Brentford. In 1940 Redjacket was sold to carry explosives up the River Lee to the Waltham Abbey explosive works, and was lost during an air raid while so employed.

The Bluejacket was laid up in 1938 and was moved to a mooring below Goldsworth locks, where she may now be seen sunk and derelict.

Secretary: E.J. Woolgar, 56 Connaught Crescent, Brookwood, Surrey: Tel B'wood 4064
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Last updated April 2005