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Anderton Boat Lift Reopens!
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The Anderton Boat Lift was raised for the first time on Tuesday 26 March 2002, except for a few tests of course. The BW Edwin Clark trip boat took its party of dignitaries, including Fred the Granada weatherman and the local ex MP (in trademark white suit), from the River Weaver up to the Trent and Mersey Canal, heralded by the Kings Army Normandy Band playing stirring music on a fine and beautiful spring morning! However operating a hydraulic system of a type unused for 100 years is giving some teething problems. Click to see.

We've photos of the Public reopening and boats on the Weaver too.

canal dam T & M canal

The T & M dammed just a few days before the reopening, and again now.

Private boats arriving on opening day

anderton lift trip boat

The lift looking shiny and almost new!

The BW trip boat plus dignitaries

River Weaver Lindsay & Keppel

The real boats arrive and expertly wind!

And moor up.

Boat Lift Boat Lift

Edwin Clark enters the caisson.

The lift begins and the band plays on.

Boat Lift opening speeches

Almost at the top.

Then the speeches begin.

daylight fireworks daylight fireworks

Then the daylight fireworks! The weird blue tubes 'wiggle' as air is pumped through them, bet the Victorians didn't have these!

Despite some last minute problems including the emergency closure of the canal, the huge army of BW workers and contractors got the lift open on time. No doubt there were many fingers secretly crossed as it rose, perhaps just a little jerkily, to the upper level. After the official speeches by Dr David Fletcher, who likened the motion of the lift to 'the beating of the waterways heart', and Martin Bell who said 'good things happen because people make them happen', the BW chairman George Greener set free 1875 balloons and there was a tremendous display of daylight fireworks. Really!

We've photos of the Public reopening and boats on the Weaver too.

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