Past (Web) Masters
At present it seems that the past has its future assured, as virtually all the waterway museums are also virtual waterway museums. Let's start with the National Waterways Museum
www.nwm.org.uk at Gloucester which has a site giving a lot of information to potential visitors including a page, with photographs, which gives a flavour of the collection inside and outside the building. There is also an events page which, at the time of writing, features tug boat driving and blacksmith courses, the Mikron Theatre Company, a photographic exhibition and jazz cruises on the river. Other pages cover education, shop and café, boat trips, etc. The NWM is run by the Waterways Trust as is the Boat Museum
www.boatmuseum.org.uk at Ellesmere Port. They too have a similar range of information but seem to have even more details, and better photographs, than the NWM. It also has a page called Around the Site which allows you to explore the 7 acres of the historic canal port by pointing at the buildings in the aerial view. You can click on some buildings to see more details. There is also a link from the Boat Museum to the other Waterways Trust museum at Stoke Bruerne but this just leads to a single page on the BW site giving basic information about the Canal Museum.
Another source of information about the Canal Museum at Stoke Bruerne is Canal Junction
www.canaljunction.com which has a page for this museum and for over twenty others. The Black Country Living Museum
www.bclm.co.uk is included in this list as well as having its own site. You probably know the museum as the home of the steam boat President and its butty Kildare which have their own site at
www.users.surfaid.org/~nixonm/index.htm. The Foxton Inclined Plane Trust
www.foxcanal.fsnet.co.uk offers several pages covering the history of the inclined plane, details of their museum the locks and the canal system, the aims of the trust, membership, the feasibility study for the restoration of the plane and visitor information. The London Canal Museum
www.canalmuseum.org.uk is the only London museum of inland waterways. Situated on the Regents Canal close to Kings Cross station, the museum is housed in a former Victorian ice warehouse used a famous ice cream maker, and features the history of the ice trade as well as the canals. You will find that this comparatively small museum has a web site that punches above its weight. Moving up the Thames from London we come to Henley, the home of the River Thames and Rowing Museum
www.rrm.co.uk which has galleries for Rowing, The Thames and Henley and provides a full range of educational and visitor facilities.
We have some very interesting new sites this month, starting with A. M. Models
http://ammodels.4t.com who produce a wide range of models including narrowboats, locks, bridges and wharves. All are individually hand made in wood and painted by Andy Matthews. Models range from an early Associated Canal Carriers Royalty class motor to a modern cruiser or even a replica of your own boat. If you are not in the market for a model boat you may still be tempted by this site as it has several useful lists of ex-working boats. The Liverpool Canal Link project
www.liverpoolcanallink.co.uk sets out to restore the link with Liverpool Docks that was lost in the mid 1960's when the end of the Leeds & Liverpool Canal was closed. There are four options for proposed routes of a new canal around the Liverpool Pier Head. River Lee - Our River
www.riverlee.org.uk is a website designed especially for young people and their teachers. It includes information about the River Lee, the other waterways which join it and about rivers in general. The Caraboat Club
www.caraboat.com on the other hand is a site produced by an enthusiast for like minded owners of these craft, produced in the 1970s, and designed to be used as a caravan and boat. Finally, Living Waterways
www.canalhistory.net is a multilingual site that covers several waterways, in different countries, including the Caledonian Canal, the Millennium Link, the Canal du Centre, the Canal des Deux Mers, the Göta Kanal and the Adda e Navigli.
Site of the month
I have selected another personal web site this month as there are so many available now with something worthwhile to offer. This time it is Tim Lewis's Web Site
www.timlewis.org.uk which has details of the IWA North & East London Branch activities and a section on the Waterway Recovery Group London Branch. This includes photographs taken at various events. So far a good site but it is the section titled "Tim's Waterways Web Page Index" that makes this site stand out from the rest because this takes us into several pages of links to other waterways web sites listed under various categories. It's a really good site if you are looking for waterways related information as so much effort has been put into finding and maintaining these links.
If you would like to suggest a favourite web site which you think WW
readers should know about please mail me at Jim.Shead@btinternet.com.