Sunday 17 August. 2 ¼ miles.
Walked back to Walton Hall to look at the Cycle Museum. A grand old gentleman showed us around his collection. Spent about an hour with him as he had been to NZ and best place was Napier. He happened to be there over an Art Deco weekend. Checked out the local pub for a Sunday Roast, didn't stay as it was just a smorgasbord. Lunch on the boat then moved off. After fighting strong crosswind for a while, moored up with the help of two other boaters in the shelter of some trees. Walked into Daresbury and went to the Lewis Carroll centre. Interesting little spot. Having missed out on Sunday roast we went to the “Ring of Bells” for a lovely al-a-carte meal.
|A bit bigger than Napier Tower and no aircraft to be seen.|
At a scientific centre on the way to Daresbury.
Stopped at Preston Brook chandler just to see what they had, my sort of shop. Bought some LED bulbs and lights to reduce our power consumption. Backed the boat up the canal a bit and turned down towards Runcorn. Stopped and looked around Norton Priory. Mainly ruins but the under-croft survives from the 17th century. Continued to the end of the canal at Runcorn and walked down to two large bridges that cross the Mersey and Mersey Ship Canal then back to the boat through town. Getting late by this time and not going to stop here. Moored up at the Priory gardens for the night.
|Two bridges at Runcorn|
Tuesday 19th August. 5 miles, 1 tunnel, 1 lock.
Heading south again and after the tunnel strike the first lock for some time. Just a teaser with a rise of two inches. The lock takes us from the Bridgewater canal onto the Trent and Mersey canal. Spent the night above the Dutton Lock where we spent 2 nights on the Weaver river in 2010.
|Looking over Dutton Lock|
|Moored here where this breach closed the canal for over a year, I think.|
Wednesday 20th August. 4 miles, 2 tunnels.
Walked into Acton Swing bridge where we had had a delightful experience at a farm shop in 2010. All changed now and very commercial. Later on we passed the Anderton lift which puts us back into old territory. Lift closed for the night.
Thursday 21st August. 5 ¼ miles.
Had some work done on the heater as it needs to be working now with temperatures dropping.(9 degrees overnight). As we head south it is interesting remembering places we have been before. Last time we called into Marston to look at a Salt museum which was pretty derelict. This time they are spending millions on it but won't be open till next year. Who knows we may get to see it in operation. Later on we passed an boat, seeing our flag “where you from” “Napier” “so are we”. We moored up together for the night. Their house is about ½ mile from ours.
Friday 22 August. 4 miles, 1 lock.
A short day into Middlewich through the last double lock of this trip. Bit of shopping & organised a pumpout for 0900 in the morning before all the hire boats return and get sent out again. Bank holiday weekend.
Saturday 23rd August, 5 ½ miles, 8 locks.
Up and away. If we hadn't been committed we probably would have stayed put as the rain was heavy. Pump out complete and we are number 3 for the lock. The private boats are trying to beat the hire boat rush. In a bit of a rush I slip down the stairs onto my back. Bit of a worry for a while but kept working all day. Went through the 4 locks to get clear of the congested area then moored up to wait a change in the weather. After lunch the sun comes out so off we go . A couple of OAP's talked to Diana at one lock then when we arrive at the next they are there and have opened the gates so we can go straight in. They live near the Macclesfield canal so hope to catch up with them when passing. Picked some blackberries then moored up to rest my back.
Sunday 24th August. 1 mile.