An oil spill at Blake’s Lock on the River Kennett, Berkshire, on Monday 16th July 2007 left a bevy of swans in danger of contamination. Quick action by members of the public, Environment Agency staff and rescue group Swan Lifeline soon saw the slick contained by booms, but 60 slippery swans had to be rescued. Lock keepers Tony Leigh and John King came up with the idea of tempting the swans into the lock with bread, to set up easy capture by the Swan Lifeline staff. The swans are currently being cared for in Eton before being released.
For more information on Swan Lifeline and their campaign to buy a new boat for more rescues like this one, please call 01753 622709 or visit

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