Thursday, 3 February 2011

what lies beneath..

I had a lovely few days away, visiting friends of Simon and exploring part of the Grantham canal. Simon's blogged about that, and he had a camera, so I won't! But what struck me most was the quiet emptiness of the canal, almost entirely boatless and, in the long stretch away from houses and people, free of rubbish. I like the bustle of boaty places and canalside communities, but the crap that comes with large concentrations of people is an awful blight. I don't think it has to be this way. People can live together without wrecking the environment, if we stop buying plastic and packaging everything.
I shouldn't rant so much, I know, but I'm on the Slough arm at the moment and saddened by the amount of dumped rubbish that's in and around the canal. I had a quick clear-up just around my boat and filled a (plastic) bin-bag easily.
Just off the towpath, a nest of colourful wires:

The lakes where anglers hang out (you can maybe spot the tent just over the fence), and useful dumping ditch behind them:

Oh well, there was probably nothing good on anyway...

In the canal itself, there's a fascinating underworld of tyres and containers. It's quite beautiful in it's way! And doesn't this motorbike look romantic in its murky home, although I don't think it would have done my boat's hull any good if I'd tried to moor here.

It's a shame because there's nowt wrong with the canal itself (though i know the summer reeds are a big problem). There are lots of trees and undergrowth and walks around lakes. It needs a lot of people to care enough and give time to cleaning it up, putting pressure on the anglers, getting bins built, etc. The problem is that most of us, including me, are either just passing through or feel no connection or 'ownership' of the canal.


Simon said...

is it wrong of me to think 'mmm, wires...' ? ;-)

It's always so sad when people don't respect what they, or others, may waqnt to enjoy another day.

Anonymous said...

The Slough Arm is difficult - I want to love it but I don't!

I get so cross when people dump litter - especially on that scale - says a lot about how the canal is regarded by locals...

Hope to see you when we come up the GU later in the spring - not long to go now...

Sue, nb Indigo Dream

Keith and Jo Lodge said...

It is a sad reflection on man when they cannot clean up after themselves.
I get so cross when I see rubbish dumped. There is a stretch on the Leicester Line which is full of rubbish and it is coming from one community who also use the towpath as their own public toilet.
It is sad to say that the UK is a rubbish tip and no one seems to really care.
When we were in Banbury, I witnessed a local throw a carrier bag into the canal with all their rubbish in it and they did not bat an eyelid. In Birmingham a lot of the rubbish is house waste. People literally go out of their front door and take the bin with them and tip it into the canal, because that is what they did in their homeland.If something is not done soon, we will all disappear under this mountain of rubbish.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for your comments my friends. I guess the thing is, we get annoyed when our waste and pollution becomes visible, escaping into beautiful wild places. Especially infuriating to see someone doing the deed as Jo & Keith say. Maybe this is the only time we wake up to the fact that we throw away such a mountain of rubbish every day. As long as it's shoved under the ground, we don't have to think about it.
Simon, I think it's right to think "mmm...wires"! I admire the way you re-use things you find, giving them a second or third life. Everyone should try to do this instead of chucking out and buying new.
Sue - I'll stop ranting and look forwards to spring (great to see all those snowdrops and the leaves of daffs peeping through). Hope to see you out boating :-)