Let the community be captain of their own ship

The yard in a state of disrepairThe land beside the canal used to be commonland for the use of local people. Long ago it was purchased by British Waterways and wasn’t used for any specific purpose for quite a while. Eventually they started renting it to be used as a boatyard. It was never fully utilised but had some work and activity going on. Over the years the site had been used less and less until it closed and fell into a state of disrepair. It was not being maintained or used for any purpose and what would become of it was uncertain.

Ruby Chambers moved into Slacks Avenue in the year of 2004. She took on a long standing dispute representing the residents again the commercial boat yard at the end of the street. After 4 long years Ruby managed to win the case.

To protect the land from further commercial use or property development she decided to invest in it herself. Ruby was heavily involved in the community of Atherstone, serving as Mayor in 2010. She spent the majority of her career (apart from her time as a Wireless girl in the 2nd world war) devoted to developing young people. And so she dreamt of transforming it into a space for young people to learn and develop.

She loved the canal and took pride in being captain of her own ‘ship’

In 2012 Ruby sadly passed away, leaving the boat yard to her daughter Jacky Chambers. In 2015, Jacky and her daughter Kate decided to take on the challenge of transforming the derelict and unused boatyard, into something everyone in Atherstone could enjoy. And so Ruby’s Yard was born.