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Boat Naming and Cutting Symbolic First Sod
Thursday, 26 August 2010 12:04

Celebrating the 200th Anniversary of the opening of the Wilts & Berks Canal:
Boat Naming and Cutting Symbolic First Sod
by the Trust Patron Her Royal Highness The Duchess of Cornwall,
Wednesday 8th September 2010

The Trustees of the Wilts & Berks Canal Trust are pleased to announce that the Patron of the Trust, Her Royal Highness The Duchess of Cornwall, will be invited to mark the 200th anniversary of the opening of the canal by travelling on, and officially naming, the canal's first purpose-built Trip Boat for visitors, and by digging the first symbolic sod of the new Melksham Link on 8th September.ExampleBoat2_250

The Event Programme will commence when Her Royal Highness will be met at Hilperton Marina by County and Civic dignitaries and introduced to the Chairman of the Trust Mr John Laverick.

Her Royal Highness will be escorted aboard the new trip boat and embark on a journey along the canal to Semington Bridge. On the journey The Duchess will meet key funders and supporters of WBCT's projects, local MPs and a representative of British Waterways. The Kennet and Avon Canal Trust's trip boat the Barbara McLellan will follow in convoy carrying members of the WBCT Partnership, Trust directors, landowners and local officials.

On arrival at Semington, Her Royal Highness will be greeted by music from the Royal British Legion Youth Band and after disembarking The Duchess will be introduced to the boat builders before officially naming the new trip boat. Her Royal Highness will then turn the first symbolic sod in the proposed Melksham Link Project and be introduced to local landowners and Trust volunteers.

Chairman John Laverick said "The Trustees are delighted that The Duchess of Cornwall has been able to help us mark the 200th anniversary of the opening of the canal. It is a wonderful way for us to thank key supporters as well as marking the milestone of commissioning our first trip boat which will give a real sense of what a fully-restored waterway will bring to local communities. We are steadily making progress on restoring the canal and its linkages which in addition will provide a significant wildlife corridor, cycleway and long distance footpath through Wiltshire, Swindon and Oxfordshire".

The event will take place late morning.

Click here for more information on the proposed Melksham Link project