Category Archives: Regions

Brian Curry Obituary


It was an emotional time as friends and family gathered at the north portal of Harecastle Tunnel to watch long-time Stoke on Trent Boat Club member, Brian Curry, embark on his last passage through the tunnel. Brian, for many years tunnel keeper at Harecastle, passed away on 2nd November, age 72. His final journey began on nb Patricia Jean which carried his woven willow casket through the tunnel towards Bradwell Crematorium in Newcastle under Lyme, where the service was taken by Father Brian Williams, a fellow boater.
Brian’s niece Jenny had recorded his wishes for this final journey, planned whilst he was in hospital. Jenny had spent many happy times with ‘the best uncle’ on his boat and said he was happier on water than on land! He was a skilled single handed boater. Fellow club member, Dave Rushton who had known Brian for many years called him a ‘smashing bloke’ with a good sense of humour, and the nicest person. Another life-long friend said of Brian that he would do anything for anyone, and was always up for a laugh.
A wicked sense of humour helped Brian deal with some of the more awkward boaters he encountered. One lady, demanding details of the part which Brian said he was waiting for, to repair a lock, went away quite happy to learn it was the ‘giggling pin’.
Brian had many boats but perhaps the most unusual was one built from two ex-army pontoons onto which he added a cabin created from the tops of two Bedford vans! When one of his boats was sold, the new owners were forced to change the boat name; Brian had been a very early riser, and people recognising the boat but not knowing it wasn’t his now, were most unpopular when they woke the new owners for a brew at first light!
Brian Curry was a legend of the waterways in Staffordshire, and he will be sorely missed by SoTBC and all who knew him.

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Cruise the Basingstoke Canal this Easter

There are three different options for you to choose from:

Cruise to Bridge Barn in Woking and return: Woodham Junction to Bridge Barn on Good Friday 29-March with return to Woodham on Easter Monday 01-April.

 Cruise to Brookwood and Bridge Barn: As per item 1 to Bridge Barn with a cruise to Brookwood (Country Park – not using the Brookwood flight)on Easter Saturday (30-April) and return to Bridge Barn on Easter Sunday (31-March)

Cruise the full length of the canal: Continue reading

Kennet re-launches to the Public

River Cargo Boat Kennet

 Kennet will be at  Burscough Heritage Week and will be open to the public on 23rd and 24th June at her relaunch.

Kennet is owned by the Leeds & Liverpool Canal Society and has a permanent mooring at Greenberfield Top Lock, in Lancashire close to the border with Yorkshire and is on the National Register of Historic Vessels.  The boat is a river class, cargo carrying Leeds &Liverpool Canal Short Boat which was built for Canal Transport Limited in 1947 by Yarwoods of Northwich.

The Kennet Project’s purpose is to create an Interactive Museum using the Heritage Short Boat Kennet to travel the 127 miles of the Leeds & Liverpool Canal, taking heritage and learning to local communities in the same way as the cargoes of old enabled industry to develop these communities.  The Project is being managed by a Working Group under the guidance of the Leeds and Liverpool Canal Society.

For more information:

Leeds & Liverpool Canal Society

Burscough Heritage Week

Friends of the Kennet