Perhaps like me you have noticed various Canal users sometimes have an uneasy relationship with each other. The Grand Union Canal towpath has a mixture of runners, anglers, cyclists, walkers (some with dogs), lock keepers, artists and others who live there all year round. And then you have the folk on the water which include kayakers and narrowboat folk with their different sub-groups.
So it was a lovely sight when I spotted this helpful and thoughtful sign at (I think) Slapton Lock on the Grand Union Canal in Buckinghamshire. To think someone had gone to the trouble of alerting passing cyclists to the puncture alert! Perhaps this was following some serious hedge cutting and the lock keeper had learnt from experience that this could cause a problem for passing cyclists. Perhaps the lock keeper was a cyclist as well?
The actual towpath, which is generally on one side or other, often has a variable surface and these are generally well cared for around locks, especially if there is a lock keeper’s cottage. Some of these are real gems and in the summer time they can become particularly nice with colourful displays of flowers; all very English.
It is all too easy for cycling blogs to bemoan potholes, dangerous drivers and inconsiderate behaviour. And yet it is nice to highlight some good, thoughtful courteous behaviour which all adds to the harmony on towpaths which we can all enjoy together. Well done to the lock keeper and to the Canal & River Trust – thank you – who take care of the Grand Union Canal; thank you!