Thursday, 30 July 2015
Well not quite 0 miles today. we were breasted up last night and this morning the other boat wanted to move. I untied the front and pushed the bow to the other side of the canal. They slid their boat out the gap and I pushed the bow back and tied up again. Ballet on water. A quiet day after yesterday's locks. In the afternoon we wandered into Warwick where I went to the library and found a book about the house my Granny lived in as a teenager before the family emigrated to NZ. Managed to photocopy the relevant pages. Got in touch with Rachel (daughter) who flew into Heathrow last night. Her and Trevor are arriving by bus tomorrow. Looking forward to seeing them and showing them the warwick connection.
Wednesday, 29 July 2015
Monday, 27 July 2015
|In my colour too!|
|Maybe I could afford this bit?|
Sunday, 26 July 2015
Saturday, 25 July 2015
Friday, 24 July 2015
The Fish and Meat market was close so we wandered through there. If we had a freezer on the boat I could have filled it with stuff that Diana wouldn't touch. Great selection of Crustaceans and offal. After lunch we walked in a different direction to visit the Museum of the Jewellery Quarter. It was the last tour of the day and got a bit rushed as the guide, obviously had to have us back to the shop before it closed. We were taken through the smelting, cutting, stamping, soldering and polishing of silver and gold products. A factory that was closed and left as it was until opening as a museum.
Next was the "Pen Museum". The guide here was half blind and almost totally deaf resulting in some interesting answers to questions we asked. Once again we were taken through the process of how a nib is pressed and bent, in fact we made a nib ourselves. Then we were taken through a large collection of pens, nibs, nib boxes, ink. wells, typewriters, stamps, stenography and braille machines. It is great that all these collections are being saved. Not sure who will look after them when the present generation of volunteers die. We split up then as Diana wanted to go to the Rag market and I had been told about a model train museum. My museum was still being developed. It had a number of train sets running but no museum type stuff. It looked a bit like Train World in Napier. Heaps of potential for a tourist destination. Diana's Rag market was just as exciting.
Monday, 20 July 2015
Saturday, 18 July 2015
Tuesday, 7 July 2015
|The Rain stopped soon after|
|The Boat Inn|
Monday, 6 July 2015
A mile along the way we are into the 5 Tyrley locks. Once through these we pull over for lunch happy that there are only 2 more in the next 25 miles. Well it is Sunday and the sign says only a 10 minute walk to "The 4 Alls". It was worth the effort with a very reasonable carvery, when on the plate looked like a Sunday Roast. Back on the boat we travelled through some deep, dark cuttings covered in trees, over long embankments giving great view of the country for miles around. Could just about see where we have been in the last couple of months (excluding Scotland). Pulled over when a heavy shower was threatening. It passed and we we off again. Well, about knock off time I see a note in my travel book about the Pub, rated 2nd best on the Canals. We stopped here in 2010 so thought it deserved another look. Hadn't changed a bit since then, in fact I don't think it has changed in a century or 2. Spent a delightful hour or so listening and trying to understand the local conversation. The Anchor is an old boaters pub. The landlady is 80, her late husband was one of the last boatmen. Another character had been plying the cut up until the end. He now has a traditional working boat moored across the canal from the pub. Then a couple who used to live in the area turned up for the first time in 30 years and the stories started. What a privilege to be part of reminiscing the boating stories of the past.
Saturday, 4 July 2015
|Prees Branch Lift Bridge|
We arrive at Baddiley #3 lock, gates have been opened by a boat coming up so we sailed straight in. Both lock girls are struggling to lift the paddles even with two hands. I go forward to help and as I am about to start I notice the front of the boat is hung up on the lock. I ask the two girls to drop the paddles as quick as possible to stop the rear of the boat getting any lower. Now the problem is that these paddles have been modified so you can't throw the ratchet device off, you have to hold it up to turn the windlass. Remembering it takes two hands to move the paddle up 1 notch at a time it becomes very difficult to move it down again with one hand when the other is holding this modified devise. Meantime while the girls are struggling at the front of the boat I have gone to the back and have opened the paddles to let water in. It was our lucky day as there was more water coming in than going out and the back of the boat rose up again onto an even keel. Our luck continued with the remaining 2 locks of the day set for us.
Saturday, 27 June 2015
Checked out the Gopro movies. (Note to self: push record button).
|Pontcysyllte Aqueduct from the River Dee|
|Railway Viaduct over the River Dee further down stream|
Checked the Gopro. Interesting conversations recorded but footage over the Chirk Aqueduct not that good.
Monday, 22 June 2015
Friday, 19 June 2015
Monday, 15 June 2015
Sunday, 7 June 2015
Thursday, 4 June 2015
Tuesday, 2 June 2015
Monday, 1 June 2015
Sunday, 31 May 2015
Friday, 29 May 2015
Same old, same old today. We woke to the music of rain on the roof so there was no rush to put feet on the floor. With the new batteries there was no question if we should run the heaters. What a cosy place our little waterborne home is when it is warm. Rain eased about lunch time and it was quite a pleasant day. Off we go straight into a rising breeze which made a significant chill factor. As the day went on it started to get unpleasant so as soon as we could find a sheltered spot that was it. Lovely, peaceful & rural. Just after tea the local farmer decided to spray the paddock across the canal with effluent. although the wind had dropped and it was a beautiful sunset we chose to stay inside with windows closed.
Part of our journey today took us under the M6. We were doing 2mph they were doing about 5mph That's progress!
Thursday, 28 May 2015
Today while moored up after the first 3 locks the Red Arrows headed North again, to return later. I'm sure I counted 9 this morning and only 8 this afternoon.
Wednesday, 27 May 2015
That having been sorted we walked into Congleton and bought a few things for the boat. Had lunch and did a supermarket shop so we can be self contained for a few days. In the evening we returned to Alan & Marion's as they had offered the use of their washing machine. That made life just that much easier.
Wednesday 27 May. 7 miles, 4 locks.
Thursday, 21 May 2015
Tuesday, 19 May 2015
Saturday, 16 May 2015
Friday, 15 May 2015
Good selection of cars but you couldn't see half of them as they were stacked 5 high up about a 20 meter high wall. They had the best selection of ship models I have ever seen. Understandable in the middle of a major ship building area.
Cousins of Diana & Murray, Donald & Morag came for lunch and we had a pleasant afternoon in conversation. We had first Meet them in Napier in 2002.
Sunday, 10 May 2015
We headed off with Murray by car and then caught a ferry (first time on the water under power this season) to the Isle of Brute. We visited the stately home at Mount Stuart www.mountstuart.com
A magnificent home with grounds to match. Stayed fine all day. We are starting to get our walking fitness back after a few miles around the gardens.
Friday, 8 May 2015
Thursday, 7 May. Heaps of miles, 0 locks, many tunnels.
We haven't quite abandond Molly Rose but we have moved off her for a few days. It has been a bit damp and we have decided this year that there is no pressure cruising when it is wet and cold. Murray, Diana's brother, who joins us for a week or so on the boat when we are here, has been keen to show us his new apartment in Glasgow. After a few days of considering the possibility we hopped on a train and arrived in Scotland last night. Quite different to pass through places we cruised last year. There is more to see of the UK than the few miles each side of the canal but at 200 kmph it is but a glancing look.
Tuesday, 5 May 2015
Tuesday May 5. 0 miles, 0 locks.
Up at a reasonable hour to return the rental car to Hazel Grove. Bus in Stockport to see how we can improve our mobile wifi. Another mission. After an hour trying to establish an account with the phone company so we can go on a plan. It all fell over when we couldn't give them a post code. Tried the marina one. No go. Tried Murray 's in Glasgow. No go. In the mean time we have a pay as you go at more than twice the price. Not to bad at the moment as the marina has wifi.
The other issue we are trying to sort out is that Diana has lost all her contacts in her laptop and ipad making it very difficult for her to send out her daily photos. Best advice so far is to take a train into Manchester where there is a Mac shop. Another option is to go to the Trafford Centre where there is another Mac shop next to a canal. If we rush we can be there in a week.
Monday, 4 May 2015
We heard there was a fly your kite day at a large National Trust property not far away so off we went. The entrance to Lyme Park is on the A6, reportedly the busiest road in the UK. As we arrive at the gate to make a left turn there are signs up saying "park closed" with a number of people in fluro jackets trying to keep some order. We stopped to see what the story was. Of course there is no where to pull over so as we talked to the fluor jacket brigade about how we could get in traffic stopped. The car parks are full and also the paddocks. So where can we park? A shrug of the shoulders was the reply. With a bit of tooting from behind we moved on and took a side street where we managed to park and walk the 1/2 mile back.
The kite flying was on a ridge alongside a keep. Great setting and a nice bit of wind. About now I wish we had bought one or two from home. There were some small para foils for sale so we now have 2 kites on the boat.
Sunday, 3 May 2015
Sunday 3 May. 0 miles, 0 locks
Looks like we may have arrived a bit early. Max temp yesterday was 7 °. Thank goodness we are connected to power with a small 2kw fan heater on almost continuously. The positive side is that the canals are filling up with water, especially the Peak Forest canal where we are. They had a major leak last month and Molly Rose had been sitting on the bottom for a while. All good now. Slept on last night. Great to be back and trying to remember where everything is. Visitors from Napier came aboard for lunch. Traveling from Harrogate to Stratford. That is now 5 from home that can relate to what we are doing.
Friday, 1 May 2015
We are here and Molly Rose is looking in good shape. Quite dry inside but a bit cold so have had the heater on to help bring her back to life. Nick has been busy sorting out the list of maintenance I left him with, including a new Boat Safety Certificate. Like a WOF and good for 4 years. Wonder if we will need to renew it in 2019.
From Macau to Furness Vale. The day started with breakfast then a walk around Macau back to the hotel around 1300 for a feet up, pack up and check out at 1800. Ferry ride to Hong Kong Airport with a departure time of 0100. Been up 17 hrs. The 13 hour flight is one of those life experiences. So 30hrs later we are in Manchester waiting for the morning rush to ease up before venturing on to the M65 and A6. An hour or so with Nick on the boat before some shut eye at the B & B. Wake from that in the evening before back to the boat for an hour or so, visit the chippy and .end the day in a very comfortable bed.
Sunday, 14 September 2014
Friday 5 September. 4 3/4 miles, 1 lock.
Beautiful day on a lovely canal. Set off from Kidsgrove in a warm overcast with a light haze day through country side with many beautiful bridges. Reminded us of the Shropshire canal. Pulled into Congleton for lunch then off into town to sort out (try anyway) Diana's phone. I think we are about to give up on T-mobile and ee networks. Went to Marian and Alan's for tea and then they took us to the birthplace of Reginald Mitchel, then the cloud, the highest point in the area. Couldn't see much because of the haze. They then showed us the flight of 12 locks we need to climb to complete our journey. Apple and blackberry crumble for pudding then back to the boat.
|The Aqueduct at Congleton|
Saturday 6 September. Nil
|Inside the Quarry Bank Mill|
|The Apprentice House|
|Went home via Jodrell Bank|
Diana went to Marian's to do some sewing while I fiddled with Molly Rose. In the evening we took Alan & Marian and enjoyed a Sunday Roast at their local pub.
Monday 8 September. 7 miles, 12 locks, 1 swing bridge.
Left Congleton before lunch heading towards Macclesfield. Had lunch at the bottom of the Bosley locks then up the last 12 of this trip. Flat water from here. Planned to stop at a pub for tea but after mooring up found it closed and for sale.
|Entering the last lock|
|The last lock is closed behind us.|
Tuesday 9 September, 3 mies 1 swing bridge.
Through countryside until reaching the Macclesfield moorings. A bit disappointing. They were rough, couldn't get into the bank and then there were signs everywhere restricting us to 24 hours and not allowed to run the engine. Bit tough when short of power.All in all not welcoming. Into town and got no joy out of T-mobile even though the shop assistant was doing her best. Changed providers to "3" so Diana now has a new number.
Wednesday 10 September,4 miles.
Went into Macclesfield and visited the Silk museum and had a tour around the Paradise mill. The guide explained all the machinery and turned them on as we went. Lunch in a delli. Diana to the opp shops and I went back to the boat via the hardware shop. Motored on over a high embankment overlooking Bollington and stopped in a country setting further on.
Thursday 11 september, 3 1/2 miles.
Walked back into Bollington and checked out the lower part. Had lunch in a cafe and then checked out the upper part of town which was the nicer of the two. Motored north thinking we may walk into Lyme Park another National trust estate but the house is closed on thursdays. traveled on a bit further then moored up opposite a line of residential moorings.
|The Aqueduct at Bollington|
Friday 12 September. 8 miles, 2 lift & 2 swing bridges.
Stopped at Marple to do some shopping. We were last here on 14th May at the start of this years adventure. Reaching Marple also completes the Cheshire Ring, which we first got onto on 11th June 2010. Now down the Peak forest canal and back to Furness Vale to moor up in preparation to going home. Tonight the Furness Vale Boat Club were having a meeting so we went along to meet the locals. Some worthwhile contacts here.
Saturday 13 September. Nil.
Worked on tidying and cleaning the boat until about 1600 then off to a BBQ with the boat club.
Sunday 14 September. Nil
Bit of maintenance on the boat. Being sunday we went to the local pub for Sunday Roast in the evening.