Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, turns first sod in Melksham Link Canal
The Wilts and Berks Canal opened 200 years ago ... but only survived for just over a hundred years, as carriage of good moved away to rail and then back to road, from where the canal had taken it in the first place.
But with canals now being a popular leisure time magnet - drawing people to cycle, to walk, to fish, and to look - as well as to travel on boats - now is the time for this canal to be re-opened ... all the way from the Kennet and Avon canal junction at Semington up to Abingdon on the Thames.
Yesterday, Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall visited Semington. There, she watched the "Barbara McLellan" arrive on the Kennet and Avon with the VIP group, named the new Wilts and Berks trip boat (that will be used on sections already restored) as "The Dragonfly", and cut the first sod for the new Melksham Link, which will reconnect the existing Kennet and Avon Canal at Semington to the river Avon near Melksham, as the end step in a chain all the way to Abingdon. Through Melksham, alas, the original canalbed has been built over, and so a new route is needed - for the vast majority of the route, the old bed is still available.
Lisa journeyed on the Barbara McLennan yesterday as part of the "VIP" group in her role with the Chamber of Commerce, and put together this video.
The Canal Link has the full support of the Chamber of Commerce, and is enthusiastically welcomed by the tourist information, town traders, and indeed the wider community. At the current time, we're just coming towards the end of a consultation / planning / discussion stage (royal "we" - the town / CAP) which has explained the plans to the community, generated suggestions, concerns, and shown us just how well the link will fit in, and how carefully evaluated and considered the route is. I'm sure it will be a great success
(written 2010-09-09, updated 2010-10-21)
Associated topics are indexed as below, or enter http://melksh.am/nnnn for individual articles
M201 - Well House Manor - Around Melksham, Wiltshire  Seeing Christmas Coming to Melksham - (2014-12-20)  Around and about - Melksham - (2013-09-08)  Tell me a bit about Melksham - (2013-08-10)  After the storm - (2013-07-29)  My pictures of Melksham Carnival, 13th July 2013 - (2013-07-14)  Melksham - Flower Town - (2013-06-20)  New Pictures - Melksham Pack Horse Bridge - (2013-05-12)  Melksham welcomes visitors - new blue plaque trail and more - (2012-12-27)  Picture - between Lacock and Melksham - (2012-12-21)  Melksham Spa from Woolmore Farm - (2012-12-09)  Melksham Christmas Lights, 2012 - (2012-12-05)  Autumn scenes from Melksham - (2012-10-16)  How have Melksham shops changed in 60 years? - (2012-09-24)  Guest Guide for Well House Manor and Melksham - (2012-09-18)  Evening behind Melksham Spa - (2012-08-12)  Town Clean - Melksham - (2012-07-29)  Fine evening, country walk from Melksham - pictures - (2012-06-21)  Short Web Addresses for Melksham - (2012-05-30)  A walk around Melksham this morning. Can you place all of these? - (2012-05-17)  Melksham ATC - freedom of the town - (2012-05-05)  Some unpublished and historic pictures - Museum of Melksham - (2012-04-28)  The Bowerhill Villager - a newsletter for Bowerhill, Melksham - (2012-04-22)  A Museum for Melksham History. Open from 12th May 2012. - (2012-04-21)  Events in Melksham - read all about them, and tell us about yours - (2012-04-15)  Deeper than Art - An exhibition of the tattoo Canvas - Melksham - (2012-04-10)  Welcome to Melksham - our new communities - (2012-03-18)  Basham Festival, Melksham, early August 2012 - a welcome - (2012-03-16)  TrainWest 2012 - 14th and 15th April, Melksham, Wiltshire - (2012-03-16)  Along the brook - East Melksham to Melksham - (2012-03-10)  Exploring Melksham with a film maker - (2012-03-09)  The way of the Prioress - Melksham history pictured today - (2012-03-09)  Snow comes to Melksham, Wiltshire - pictures - (2012-02-10)  Images of the new year in Melksham - (2012-01-05)  Some different pictures from Melksham - (2011-12-07)  Melksham has a Heart - Montage picture for sale - (2011-11-20)  Melksham has a heart - come and see the pictures. Sunday, 11 to 3, Assembly Hall - (2011-11-18)  Quintessentially English - scenes from our Wiltshire town - (2011-11-14)  Melksham Forward - meeting summary and pictures - (2011-11-04)  Sunday Evening ... newest and oldest Melksham pictures - (2011-10-30)  Images of Melksham - (2011-10-29)  Currently pictured in Melksham - (2011-10-09)  Plenty to do in Melksham - (2011-08-13)  Home Grown Pigs, near Melksham Station - (2011-06-26)  Getting away from the madding crowd - an intercontinental journey - (2011-05-27)  Easter on the Canal - near Melksham, Wiltshire - (2011-04-26)  Morning in Melksham - (2011-04-23)  What have these pictures in common? - (2011-04-16)  Around and about Melksham in more pictures - (2011-04-05)  Her favourite store - (2011-04-02)  Seeing Electricity Pylons near Melksham - (2011-03-21)  Views of Melksham - November 2010 - (2010-11-13)  Autumn walk from Bowerhill - (2010-10-31)  Melksham Food and Drink Fair and Town Crier Competition - (2010-07-04)  Dauncey Gardens, Melksham - (2010-06-27)  Melksham Scouts - (2010-04-25)  Melksham in Pictures - (2010-04-10)  The bull on the footpath - (2010-04-04)  New brochures for the Melksham area - (2010-03-24)  Early Spring walk in Melksham - (2010-03-07)  Freddies Wood and the K and A Canal - (2010-01-17)  Consultation in Melksham, on Melkshams future - (2010-01-17)  Melksham Christmas Lights - (2009-12-05)  Brown horses in Melksham - (2009-11-08)  Pantomimes around Melksham - 2009/2010 season - (2009-10-28)  Businesses effected by road works in Melksham - (2009-08-11)  Great to be in Melksham - (2009-08-08)  Standing on the corner, Melksham Carnival - (2009-07-19)  History is not always pretty - (2009-06-30)  Walks in and around Melksham, Wiltshire - (2009-06-21)  Melksham in pictures - (2009-05-11)  In honour of the photograph, I present ... a walk from Reybridge to Lacock - (2009-05-10)  Riverside Development - (2009-04-26)  Melksham Industrial - (2009-03-04)  East of Melksham Countryside - (2009-03-02)  Confidence, Customer Service and Tourism in Melksham - (2009-02-15)  The Month Ahead - What is happening in Melksham - (2009-01-25)  Walk to Bowerhill - (2009-01-10)  Going round the block - (2009-01-04)  Melksham Oak Community School, Melksham, Wiltshire - (2008-12-07)  More PHP sample and demonstration programs - (2007-12-01)  A little touring help during a business trip to England - (2007-11-18)  Getting the local voice heard - (2007-09-26)  Asda in Melksham - Welcome or not? - (2007-09-21)  Melksham Laundrette - (2007-09-09)  Moving to Melksham? Househunting map. - (2007-09-09)  While waiting for Melksham Post Office - (2007-09-02)  Till the cows come home - (2007-07-19)  Party in the Park - (2007-07-14)  Where and When - can you place the picture? - (2007-05-27)  Sorting out for a site map - (2007-05-05)  Wiltshire Circles - (2007-04-07)  Newport Male Voice Choir - (2007-03-24)  Melksham and Norwich - (2006-12-10)  Improving the historic town of Melksham - (2006-11-30)  Presenting Melksham - for a weekend away in Wiltshire - (2006-11-17)  Tuesday night is party night - (2006-09-26)  A lazy programmer is a good programmer - (2006-09-15)  Image maps for navigation - a straightforward example - (2006-08-28)  Butterflies in a Wiltshire garden - (2006-08-12)  Melksham in Bloom - (2006-07-22)  Melksham Carnival Parade - (2006-07-16)  Melksham, Wiltshire - (2006-04-08)  Outside of the box - (2005-09-06)
Z521 - Navigable waterways - Canals, Rivers and Sea  Travelogue - from the Netherlands to London via Hook and Harwich - (2013-02-07)  The Melksham News - July 2012 - Part 2, TransWilts Rail, Wilts and Berks Canal - (2012-07-23)  Canals, watererways in the Melksham area - (2011-10-16)  Taking a boat down Caen Hill Locks - (2011-10-15)  Cruising - (2011-07-04)  The future of canal management and charities - Kennet and Avon Canal bias - (2011-05-08)  Redevelopment on the banks of the Avon in Melksham - (2011-02-25)  A new monopoly on the ferry to Northern Ireland - (2011-02-04)  Canal through Melksham - the options and issues - (2010-06-13)  Sunday - waiting for the ferry. - (2010-06-06)  Bird Watching on the Melksham Avon - (2010-04-18)  Farewell, Newcastle to Stavanger, Haugsund and Bergen - (2008-05-29)  Robert and William Whitworth - (2006-08-01)  The Wilts and Berks Canal - (2006-07-05)  Naming Rooms - (2006-06-24)  Linescapes of Mull - (2006-05-03)  Should we cruise around the world? - (2006-02-09)
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