please empty your brain below

I was puzzled by the "brave peal of chambers" at the opening ceremony.

A peal of bells - doubtful, no church nearby at that time. Using word association, then: approximately bell-shaped receptacles used for the other end of the water chain? Surely not.

It turns out to be a gun (cannon) salute. Phew.

dg: thank you for this extensive passage along the New River. As ever, your timing is of the essence.
Thanks for this -- very nostalgic for me. My Dad worked for the MWB at New River Head for many years. They held a children's party there every Christmas, in a very large room. I'm wondering if that may have been the Oak Room, but as this was over fifty years ago, I'm afraid I just don't remember!
I suspect the very large room was this one...
...the Oak Room would be too small, and too valuable.
This has been a wonderful journey, finishing with an unexpected flourish at the magnificent Oak Room. Many thanks, DG.
Just back in the door from an afternoon/evening stroll from New River Head to Palmers Green. I played unofficial tour guide for a couple of miles along the way for a fellow pilgrim (and suggested he stop by this blog for a far better guide), passed three different groups of walkers (going the correct way) and had a wonderful fifteen minutes' discussion about the underlying rock formations of north London with Al the urban geologist. A most enjoyable walk and a fitting way to mark the 400th birthday of the New River. Thanks for another excellent blog series DG.
Thank you DG you piqued my excitement about today's significance and I had three forays to the New River today - a wander along the gorgeous Canonbury section with the little hut, where signs were going up directing me to both a fire eater and a storyteller, then on my long walk with friends from Arnos Grove through various Enfield Parks to a lovely meal at the beautifully set Crown and Horseshoes, where we both pass the long abandoned loop in Arnos Park and traversed the beautiful section between Enfield golf course and said pub after dark, me announcing on crossing the bridge near the golf course the significance of the occasion.

As someone else said - wonderful timing!
Great stuff - Thankyou dj

In the late 60's we lived in City Road, just below the old Angel station, and pushed prams along the various parks that followed the New River

I remember discussing what problems the canal engineers had driving a tunnel under another canal, with what must have been very little clearance
I'd always wondered what that building was when going past. I kept thinking how awesome it would be to have that round room in the upper corner to play in.

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