Sunny day called for a bit of field work (excuse the pun) so went for a run and a dip at Compton Lock on the Itchen Navigation. It’s been a popular spot for many years.
Some photos from 1976 on the above website link. Shows much less vegetation, probably to the benefit of the navigation. Tree roots expose the banks to erosion. As do dogs jumping in and out at undesigated spots. Although even designated spots are experiencing some erosion it would seem as the bank has begun falling away from behind some of the railway sleepers that form the steps into the lock. I would guess the cause is simply down to sheer numbers visiting the area. Needs a little TLC from the Parish Council in anycase!