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Hambleden Lock

Outinthedinghy

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This is where a dashcam on the boat would be useful.

This smacks of money being involved and an organised attempt to get rid of somebody who will be a thorn in their side. Why are EA managers siding with those making the money, rather than somebody trying to ensure the lock can work properly?
I think the road access to the lock is a wayleave for the EA public authority BUT if it is up to Copas then maybe the house can be rented out and access arranged.

Old boy network maybe ?
 

Old Crusty

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This is where a dashcam on the boat would be useful.



I think the road access to the lock is a wayleave for the EA public authority BUT if it is up to Copas then maybe the house can be rented out and access arranged.

Old boy network maybe ?
I'd say that's very unlikely. The EA recommitted to all lock houses being occupied by resident keepers a couple of years ago, for example, Chertsey.
 

Outinthedinghy

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I'd say that's very unlikely. The EA recommitted to all lock houses being occupied by resident keepers a couple of years ago, for example, Chertsey.
Yes but Chertsey is a lot less desirable for short let's than Hambleden !

Not sure how it all works but suspect the lock house at Hambleden on Airbnb would be an absolute gold mine. Not so with the non Riverside house at Chertsey.


It will be interesting to see how this one goes and who, if anyone, replaces Simon if he does get removed .

I hope that won't happen but taking personal stuff out it is an interesting situation.
 

Old Crusty

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Yes but Chertsey is a lot less desirable for short let's than Hambleden !

Not sure how it all works but suspect the lock house at Hambleden on Airbnb would be an absolute gold mine. Not so with the non Riverside house at Chertsey.


It will be interesting to see how this one goes and who, if anyone, replaces Simon if he does get removed .

I hope that won't happen but taking personal stuff out it is an interesting situation.
I'm quite certain that the GMB would have the staff out in a flash if that were to occur. There is an agreement between the staff and the EA that the houses will not be let. This took years to agree and won't change just because of this matter.

To suggest otherwise is pure speculation and adds nothing to the cause. Remember that the EA does not have the commercial nous for renting property, it has never achieved the expected revenue.
 
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Pump-Out

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If the EA are sacking people for failure to uphold required standards....

How many are being fired for spending a heap of money to have the Slumboats towed to Penton Hook, just for the owners lawyers to have them released and towed straight back? And for failing to deal with the sewage that they mist be discharging overboard?

I have no clue of what Simon is charged, but it can't be as serious as the on-going residential boats issue.
EA, heal thyself.
 

Chill

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Never saw this myself but Just had a google and seen pictures of the pop up bar The Lockdown Lodge and its a huge thing placed right next to the upstream lock waiting moorings. Was always going to be problems with boats mooring there going to the bar, This is known as "Windy Corner" and can only imagine the frustration to boaters trying to moor up waiting for the lock.
Lets hope if it comes back this year they site it further up river, Then Steve can make a killing on the moorings :)
 

madabouttheboat

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I for one will ensure that I have nothing to do with this establishment, wherever it 'pops' up. The whole thing stinks.

This is another nail in the Thames coffin for me. I may never darken its waters again. I don't think I'm alone either. I'm hearing more and more people suggesting that the Thames is no longer a nice place to go boating. That is both annual visitors, and permanent inhabitants. Not a very good state of affairs when you consider where the majority of their 'user contributed' income comes from.

The EA needs to take a long and careful look at all of the facts and evidence around this case. I am aware we only have one side of the story, but it seems a very plausible scenario that I believe is not far from the truth. Are you listening EA?
 

Outinthedinghy

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I suspect there are several keepers who are on radar for removal it's just a matter of waiting for the right opportunity.

It will be an internal politics thing I suppose.

Sorry for the speculation about letting the house by the way. I didn't realise there was an agreement not to do this. So we can expect a new resident keeper. At least that is Good News if there is any to come out of this.

That lockdown lodge thing was categorically inappropriate. It was blatantly obvious that people would use the head layby because it is a proper bank at the right height with handy bollards to tie the boat to.

Not exactly rocket science, and this was precisely the reason that the bar was placed there. It wasn't just some random occurrence it was because there were easily accessible moorings .
And there I was thinking that boats moored to EA lock moorings not using the lock needed to pay a mooring fee.
 

boatone

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No reason to believe there is some sort of hit list. There are a few lockies who must be getting close to retirement and one or two have gone recently but all are being replaced. Big Dave at Bell Weir retires early next month and the lockie from Boveney will become the new resident. The EA are currently recruiting a replacement for Boveney. 24 summer reliefs are expected to start appearing soon. Volunteers should also start appearing lockside as soon as procedures are finalised esp. Covid related.

Following representations the EA finally accepted that the rented houses were failing to generate any meaningful income and all have now been returned to operational use with resident keepers.

The head and tail lay byes at locks are not lock moorings, they are waiting areas only for those using the locks and mooring is not permitted.
However, its not rocket science to realise what was inevitable ......
 

Old Crusty

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I suspect there are several keepers who are on radar for removal it's just a matter of waiting for the right opportunity.

It will be an internal politics thing I suppose.

Sorry for the speculation about letting the house by the way. I didn't realise there was an agreement not to do this. So we can expect a new resident keeper. At least that is Good News if there is any to come out of this.

That lockdown lodge thing was categorically inappropriate. It was blatantly obvious that people would use the head layby because it is a proper bank at the right height with handy bollards to tie the boat to.

Not exactly rocket science, and this was precisely the reason that the bar was placed there. It wasn't just some random occurrence it was because there were easily accessible moorings .
And there I was thinking that boats moored to EA lock moorings not using the lock needed to pay a mooring fee.
If I caught a boat on the layby before 0900 with condensation on the windows & the lines, the toll book would accompany me on my visit to levy the £8 overnight mooring fee 😀
 

TrueBlue

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Larry retiring really is an end of an era. He hung on for ages. Always friendly and happy to exchange non commital views.
Even Grumpy Dave could be coaxed into a smile with the correct treatment.

Lockies "with character" was one of the features that dragged us off the ditches , but the current trends plus the huge price difference will drive us away...
 

Outinthedinghy

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That's a shame about the Clifton lock keeper. Always liked him. Also Steve at Days lock is old school but still hanging on.

It will be interesting to see what the new keepers are like. I imagine they will be okay.

Time changes things. The River is still very pleasant to be fair.
 

oldgit

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I'm hearing more and more people suggesting that the Thames is no longer a nice place to go boating.
A brief cruise through time. :)
Without wishing to be contentious the Thames has constantly changed over the years. It has always had commerce in its DNA from the very beginning and probably the reason it is still navigable( mostly) today. A method of getting people and goods across the country since time immemorial.
Speculative fortunes were spent altering its course, building locks and weirs to provide a control of the depth of water to ensure reliable transit throughout the seasons.
All from private capital, mostly who went bankrupt.
Eventually the navigation became under the control of public authorities to try and provide some sort of stability and overall plan for the entire navigation.
Largess from public funds then became the order of the day for some considerable period.
Lock staff ensured the efficient and fast flow of commercial vessels though locks and ensured ease of navigation along the river paid from the public purse.
Along came train and road transport, commerce on the river slowly died, leisure boating was the odd retired gentleman in his varnished motor yacht and loads of oiks hiring skiffs at Maidenhead.
As folks became more affluent boating was discovered to be a rather enjoyable hobby especially with chap in uniform keen to actually do something while waiting for the odd barge to turn up.
Probably some sort of law stating that the navigation must remain funded and open to navigation even though the last commercial traffic went through years ago.
Thames Salad Days.
Private skippers, under the impression that the waterway purely there for their enjoyment, surely not !
The rowers, fishermen, swimmers other boaters were there but tolerated.
Along came Maggie.
All of sudden public largess died , this is fine as long as its somebody else that suffers. :)
Eventually the beady eye of the treasury came to rest on DEFRA and the EA. Blimey thats a decent old wedge the Thames is getting to subsidise a hobby , we need a closer look at that.
Snip Snip .
The attractions of the Thames are going to become more and more obvious to a greater number of people as time goes on and if the Thames is to is to survive and thrive it needs all the income it can get.
Full circle .
Private income will be needed and that could mean a resturant on the river bank. ?
 
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Old Crusty

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Larry retiring really is an end of an era. He hung on for ages. Always friendly and happy to exchange non commital views.
Even Grumpy Dave could be coaxed into a smile with the correct treatment.

Lockies "with character" was one of the features that dragged us off the ditches , but the current trends plus the huge price difference will drive us away...
Big Dave at Bell Weir has a special uniform top that he will be wearing on his last outing before retirement. I hope some of you get to see it.
 

Outinthedinghy

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In what way did money from the "Lockdown Lodge" find it's way to the EA?

It was not immediately beside the River, it was adjacent to Hambleden lock upper layby but quite a long way from the actual edge.

I can't see how a single penny of the profits generated would ever find it's way to the funding of the Thames navigation.

It's just a private profit making scheme nothing more than that.
 

Old Crusty

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Re the commercial aspect, while working for Hall & Woodhouse (Badger Brewery), as estate manager, I was tasked by the board to find a suitable site by the Thames to build a big pub that would sell proper pub food rather than the fancy art on a plate we know so well. Sadly, that didn't happen but I can say that having a pub by water is a licence to print money.
 

oldgit

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a licence to print money.
The Malta Inn at Allington is a prime example of no matter how bad the food-drink and service ................ how true is the above.
 
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