WORK to restore Bramble, the historic working canal boat moored in Stourport, is now close to completion thanks to help from a local carpenter.
Tim Lewis, of The Village Carpenter, has spent five weeks working to recreate an authentic working boat cabin.
To complete the project, Mr Lewis repaired some of the existing work in Bramble’s cabin as well as making and installing a range of drawers, cabinets, a fold down table and a door.
The next stage will be for volunteers to decorate the cabin as it would have been during its working life and to install a wood-burning stove.
Bramble was originally gifted to Stourport Forward by the Canal and River Trust for just £1 and has been supported through The Shuttle's Bramble Appeal since 2012.
Built in 1934, Bramble started life as a Fellows, Morton and Clayton working canal boat, transporting goods, such as clay, coal, timber and grain, along the canals.
Funds raised by generous Shuttle readers, as well as work carried out by a dedicated team of staff and volunteers, have helped to restore Bramble to its former glory.
Mr Lewis said: “Bramble has been both a challenging and rewarding project.
“Working in such an unusual location has presented a number of difficulties and issues but the results, hopefully, speak for themselves.
“I have really enjoyed working on a project that will benefit so many local schoolchildren.”
It is hoped the rest of the work will be completed over the summer, with a launch event in the autumn.
When complete, Bramble will become a flagship part of the Stourport Forward educational project, based in Stourport Canal Basins.
Pauline Annis, chairman of Stourport Forward, said: “We are extremely grateful to Tim Lewis for doing such a thorough and professional job.
“Now that this major piece of work had been completed our team of dedicated volunteers can continue their work to restore Bramble to her original condition as a historic working canal boat.”
Anyone who would like to volunteer to help to restore Bramble or to donate materials should call Liz Sheerin on 01299 822827.