A 12-ft long sunken boat which had been submerged for years in the River Eye was successfully raised by the Melton and Oakham Waterways Society.
Members had been recently working to clear weeds at the Lady Wilton Bridge. As they were motoring along the river from Sysonby Knoll Hotel to the work site, members were asked by a householder if they could remove the sunken vessel which was next to the rear of his property.
Using their river clearance boat ‘Mole’ and their flat barge ‘Badger’, members eventually managed to raise the boat, breaking it up as it was lifted onto ‘Badger’, and took it away to be disposed of.
Committee member Dave Andow said: “We thought it was just a little fibre glass boat which had sunk but it turned out to be much bigger than we thought!
“It was full of silt. We just lifted it out carefully and waited for the silt to drain out. The boat fell off the bucket a few times before we eventually managed to obtain a firm hold and lower it down onto ‘Badger’.”
The crowd that had gathered gave them a round of applause and the grateful householder insisted on making a £20 donation to the society.
l The society is on the lookout for new members. Meetings are usually held about every six weeks or so on a Monday night (7.30pm start) at the Sysonby Knoll Hotel. Meetings usually lasy between one and two hours. Anyone interested in joining or who would like more information can call chairman Mick Clowes on (01509) 414140.