Addressing the leak
In case anyone was wondering what the barrier across the canal in the last two posts was about, here's the answer. Many people have expressed concern about the apparent leak(s) at East Wichel, & some seem to be under the impression that nothing's being done. Water levels at East Wichel have been visably lowering, and both the council and WBCT have been on the case for over a year! So why is it taking so long? Click here to read this great article from the Swindon Advertiser about what is being done, and why it's unfortunately taking so long, or see below for an abbreved version.
Unfortunately it's hard to pin point exactly where the leak is. It's a long stretch of canal and we can't see where the water's going. The solution is to put in the barriers you can see in some of our posts - these allow us to monitor the water levels in individual sections of the canal so we can find the lexact location of the leak.
So why haven't we found it after a year? Well unfortunately monitoring water levels is a lengthy process due to natural variation. Changes in rainfall will affect water levels, so we have to look over long periods of time to get an accurate picture. A wet winter and dry spring have really complicated things for our teams. And then of course COVID-19 came and all plans went out the window. We're getting back to investigating now and we won't rest until we find the cause.
It is also worth noting that it is possible that there is no leak, and instead the new development has impacted water levels with perhaps not enough rain water drainage going to the canal. If this is the case, we will be looking into environementally friendly ways to address this.