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Never mind the Rowlocks

This note may conceal one or two musical references, so watch out for them, but basically, we thought you might like to know that the mission to treat the reservoir was successfully completed today. Another doughty band of willing volunteers formed a work-party that dispersed a ton of Siltex across the water. We made use of an old, and not completely sound, rowing boat, successfully piloted by Nigel, never mind the rowlocks not fitting and the oars being too big, and a slow leak in the boat itself. You'll be pleased to know that he did wear a lifejacket, as those still waters run deep, but didn't actually need it. It was a bit like working on a chain gang as we transported 50 heavy bags of Siltex from the farm to the reservoir then decanted them into buckets and trugs. Some of them were spread from the boat, and others from the bank, but the result was that the clear water became a whiter shade of pale, and in fact the buckets also became a whiter shade of pail.

Others were preparing the water by raking out heaps of weed, leaving them on the banks for the invertebrates to crawl back to the water. There was also some drama off-stage, as it were, when a 4x4 that had successfully transported several oads of bags to the base of the reservoir, began digging itself into the mud. There were lots of ingenious ideas and gadgets deployed, and some spine-challenging pushing, but in the end we had to call on an ancient tractor to pull it free.

By the end of the session, we'd all had an interesting, challenging, and very enjoyable time, where four new members got to know four of the more established ones, and some delicious home-made pastries were consumed as a bonus. Huge thanks and credit is due to Les, Ian, John and Richard (apologies if I've mixed up any names) as well as Andrew, Keith, Nigel and myself, for a job well done. Let's hope that we see a difference in the reservoir over the next few years as the Siltex starts to break down the silt and make it harder for the weed to establish itself. Don't forget to put a note in your diary to sign up for the work-party there again next year as you won't want to miss the fun.



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