MORE than 50 children and their parents have been taking part in ‘ how we used to live’ days on the Wilts and Berks Canal.

Chippenham Museum has put on two day events over the school half term to tell the story of the so called 'lost arm' of the canal.

The spur from the canal, built in 1803, used to run into Timber Street where the current bus station stands, and was the commercial hub of the town, shipping in coal, bricks and timber.

Claire Selman, Visitor Services Officer, from Chippenham Museum said: “The museum is a big part of our community and allows us to keep the past alive for the town.”

“We want to encourage more people to come and visit us all year round and get hands-on with history.”

Kim Tume, who was attending the day on Tuesday with her two daughters, Poppy and Lilly said: “We’re having a great time and it’s costing us nothing. So many parents would love this for their children. I think it’s brilliant what the museum has done.”

Eight, year old Poppy said: “I’ve loved the metal detecting and finding coins, the best so far.”

Her sister, Lilly, aged five said: “I’ve had a lot of fun and I really liked looking at the clothes.”

Further activities which were held in the Yelde Hall, included: making a dragonfly out of rope and painting your own plate. The Wilts and Berks Canal Trust were also present talking about their challenge to restore the canal.

Alan Lank, Chair of the Events Committee, said:

“It’s great to work alongside the museum and look at the role the canal had in establishing Chippenham.”

“The canal used to bring in coal, wood and stone and was abandoned back in 1914.We are already having some successes. There’s a 400 meter stretch we’ve worked on near Pewsham and we are already seeing nature returning there with moorhens and reports of otters, which is fantastic.”