Topsham Lock Cottage
Topsham Lock Cottage is starting a new life as a community facility ["the project"] to be run by the Friends of Exeter Ship Canal "the Friends". The Friends vision is for the Cottage to provide an information point about the canal, its history, Topsham and the surrounds. It will host historical and topical exhibitions along with a Cafe for those using the leisure opportunities afforded by the canal.
The leaders of the project, Bob Lucas & Andrea Gallagher, have produced a detailed plan explaining the intentions and how they may be achieved. Read the report here.....
If you would like to help the volunteers working on the Topsham Lock Cottage Project please let Bob know by using this link to email him. All are very welcome.
This article by Anita Merritt, published in Devon Live on 6 May 2021 gives a great insight into the history of the cottage.
The project is very much a community effort being developed in collaboration with: Topsham Museum, Estuary League of Friends, Love Topsham, RSPB Exminster, Marine Conservation Society, Oakwood Specialist College and Devon Wildlife Trust.
Steps forward at Topsham Lock Cottage Read more in our latest news letter......
Volunteers have been working through the Spring and Summer to clear the grounds for outside seating and an exhibition area. The latest good news is we will shortly have access to the cottage for electric power and toilet facilities and to store tools.
Not only will it mean that we can use power tools but also that we will be able to invite others to the site to assist us. For example, we hope to welcome Inland Waterways Association volunteers to help clear the canal bank outside the cottage. Other groups have expressed interest in helping us.
We also hope to relocate a pontoon in order to provide a boat dock next to the cottage that will encourage visitors to come by water when we are open for business.
The Canal Friends Make a Start on Topsham Lock
Now that the pandemic rules allow it, our volunteers have
started work on the outside areas of Topsham Lock Cottage.
No access to the inside of the cottage yet, but plenty to be done
outside. Our Committee member Bob Lucas, who is
co-ordinating the project with Andrea Gallagher, said: ‘We have
been thinning the hedges and taking out some bramble roots
from the "lawn". We also started clearing the front garden
and mending the furniture.
A steady stream of passing canoeists, hikers and cyclists chatted
to the volunteers and all were very supportive of the Friends
objectives. The work so far has shown the potential demand for
the refreshments that the Friends are hoping to provide later this
year for visitors to the Lock Cottage. ‘I am now convinced this
would be a winner,’ Bob says. ‘The cottage is perfect for what we
need and in much better condition than I expected – great for
two exhibition rooms and cafe.’