Take on the oldest and most iconic of waterways roles
THE role of the lock keeper conjures up an image of misty mornings, calm waters and perhaps even a man dressed in a flat cap and breeches, managing the waterway's traffic.
However, while it may be a job that goes back hundreds of years it remains just as important today – and now a newly-formed charity is now appealing for volunteers to get involved.
Voluntary lock keepers are needed up and down the River Trent at five locations including Gunthorpe, Southwell, Newark and near Holme Pierrepont and Stoke Bardolph.
The Canal and River Trust, which cares for 2,000 miles of waterways in England and Wales, is calling on people in Notts to help boaters through the locks and provide "a polite and friendly welcome" to waterway visitors.
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Contact: 0115 8969583
Valid until: Thursday, May 23 2013
The roles are flexible, with volunteers giving as much or as little time as they want.
Simon Gent, volunteer coordinator for the Canal and River Trust, said: "Volunteers are integral to the future of the nation's waterways and our growing groups of volunteers have been making a huge difference to local canals and rivers across the East Midlands.
"This is one of the oldest and most iconic roles on the waterways.
"We're asking the millions of people who visit the region's canals and rivers each year to get active and become a volunteer lock keeper."
In a recent survey, 99 per cent of volunteer lock keepers who took part in 2012 said they planned to return in 2013 and more than 70 per cent of people said that 'keeping fit and active' was one of the major motivations for waterways volunteering.
Danny Brennan, chairman of the East Midlands Waterway Partnership, which advises the Canal and River Trust on the local waterways, added: "Working outdoors and staying fit have been a key incentive for people, as has a sense of pride in knowing they're helping protect this 250-year-old working heritage.
"It's extremely important to us that we offer volunteers something appealing where they feel like they're making a difference. This role offers all of these things to volunteers."
Volunteers can start quickly and no prior experience is necessary as a full induction, training and a uniform will be provided.
The key qualities the trust is looking for is enthusiasm and a willingness to learn.
To get involved or find out more details go to www.canalrivertrust.org.uk/volunteer, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or call 0303 040 4040