Tuesday 9 June, 5 miles, 3 locks. 2 lift bridges.
Wandered through a paddock of cows to the church at Wrenbury. Talked to a local in the churchyard who advised us there were also two bulls in the paddock. Another selection of old houses to photograph. Looked in the village store which was well stocked even if the selection was small. Took the alternative way back and called into a very good chandler at Wrenbury Mill. Set off after lunch and a couple of miles down the track we pulled over and walked to the village of Marbury. The church is situated overlooking a small lake, nice setting. Talked to the writer of walking guides who was researching walks in the area. A good variety of buildings in this village. Took a public track back to the canal through farmers paddocks. I do like this English custom/right. Further along the canal as we were coming up the lock at Willeymore I nipped in to the pub and checked at the menu. Moored up just passed the lock and enjoyed dinner at the pub.
Wednesday 10 June. 2 1/2 miles, 7 locks.
Domestic morning with washing of clothes, and a tidy up inside and out Molly Rose. After the first isolated lock we came to Gridley Brook. Three locks in quick succession then a wait at the 3 lock staircase. The locks are manned to assist with keeping things flowing. At a staircase one has to think well ahead to avoid boats meeting in the middle. Before we could start up we needed to wait for three coming down. While waiting and talking to those on the boat behind we find the owner of the boat is a Kiwi who has lived in the UK for 45 years or so and his sister from Kerikeri was with him. We caught up again in the evening when we moored up in front of them. Took a half hour walk into Whitchurch to buy a few bits and pieces and looked at some old buildings before heading back to the boat.
Thursday 11 June. 3 op shops.
Spent the morning washing the top of the boat and painting the boarding plank I repaired a few days ago. Into town in the afternoon with cameras in hand to check out the church, Heritage center & a bit of hardware shopping. The Heritage center had displays on the history of cheese making in Whitchurch and the story of Joyce, tower clocks. Fascinating how they kept the old traditional making well in to the 20th century. They have made some of the biggest clocks, in towers in the world. On the way into town we meet 4 Kiwis who were returning to their hire boat. I think we left them with a few thoughts about ownership. Maybe we will hear from them again. Had a coffee in a nice pub courtyard before the walk home.
Friday 12 June. 3 1/2 miles, 3 lift bridges, 1 op shop (saw something yesterday that was needed)
Friday is market day. Some fruit and veg, cheeses, fish and meat along with the crafty and junky stuff. I found a very tempting model shop which would have relieved me of many pounds if I could have carried the Drone, Model railway engine & large scale model aircraft home. Lunch in town and back to the boat to leave about 1600. Any of you that know the system here will appreciate that is not the best time to move from near a hire boat base on a Friday. Stuck with it for an hour and half with a bit of drizzle starting. First precipitation in over a week. Decide to moor up after the next bridge but before we got there a head pops out from a moored boat asking where we came from as they came from Tauranga. We pulled in behind them and had an extended happy hour.