Iʼve always had a soft spot for the Kennet & Avon ever since the late seventies when I was living in Devizes, not far from the top of the Caen Hill Flight.
Caen Hill Flight
At that time the flight was so overgrown that in places only the heavy wooden balance beams sticking out of undergrowth could be seen.
The pioneering canal restoration project had been in existence for a few years before that, but it wasnʼt until the undergrowth was cleared in a Job Creation Scheme (remember them?) in the early eighties that the huge side pounds were revealed.
The canal was finally opened in 1990, shortly before I moved to Dorset, so it still comes as a surprise to me to see it a going concern. Iʼm still not convinced by the light metal balance beams though, but I suppose it was inevitable.