Tuesday, 30 June 2009

Canal Boat

A day in Wokingham today, with Nick Wall the editor of Canal Boat. Previously, we've only ever met at boat shows, where there's too much going on to have a good chat. So now I know a lot more about magazines than I did before (ie I now know something, as opposed to almost nothing!)

Sunday, 28 June 2009

Braunston Rally

Today we've been to the historic boat rally at Braunston. We arrived just as President and Kildare were setting off at the start of the parade, and we walked down to the junction to watch them turn.

Back between the marina entrances, the canal was a busy as usual at this event, with boats moored four or five across. To add interest, one boat was being towed through the parade backwards.

An even more unusual boat was tied up outside the chandlery at the bottom lock: a gondola.

Walking up the locks, we soon spotted Warrior and went and introduced ourselves to Sarah, who invited us to have a look inside. This meant we could see such things as the famous stove and the even more famous engine, and it was great to meet Sarah at last.

We continued walking up the locks (which were surprisingly busy) to the tunnel entrance, then went and found the top of one of the air shafts.

Back at the first marina bridge, we spotted Nick Wall, the editor of Canal Boat, on a boat which was just rejoining the main canal. He caught up with us later, while we were chatting to Lesley and Joe from Caxton.

We left Braunston in the early afternoon, and drove a few miles to Flecknoe, parking by Bridge 102. We walked first towards our favourite mooring spot along this stretch, just before Bridge 101. Then we walked the other towards bridge 103, where we spotted No Problem. We knew from the blog that Sue and Vic would be along here somewhere. We ended up on board, being plied with drink, and having a good chat about all sorts of boaty things. It was a real pleasure to meet Sue and Vic, having followed the blog for such a long time, and to hear about their plans to head back to the fens for a few months.

All in all a great day, with some lovely sunshine, interesting boats, and nice people. What more could you want from a summer Sunday?

Monday, 22 June 2009


GEOprojects have published a new edition of their Worcester and Birmingham Canal map, and it includes one of my photos. It's of the stop lock at King's Norton, and was taken back in 2005.

Saturday, 20 June 2009

The Apprentice penthouse

I went for a quick walk along the Paddington Arm during my break yesterday, between Ladbroke Grove and Westbourne Park. At Ladbroke Grove, you can see the penthouse where The Apprentice contestants lived. There were no boats on the move, but the towpath in this area (which, according to signs all the way along, is managed by Kensington and Chelsea Borough Council under licence to BW) was very busy with walkers and cyclists. Here is my earlier post on The Apprentice.

Saturday, 13 June 2009

Cookley Tunnel

Not much of a tunnel, as it's only 65 yards long. More a long bridge really. And that seems to be what the people of Cookley thought, too: the road it goes under is called Bridge Road.

Wednesday, 10 June 2009

Debdale Lock Cottage

At first, I thought the cottage at Debdale lock was boarded up, but in fact it's being rennovated. What a great place to live!

Sunday, 7 June 2009

Weir at Debdale Lock

Debdale Lock has one of the circular weirs which are a feature of the Staffs and Worcs. It's well over ten years since we did this section of canal by boat. It's on the list to be done again!

Thursday, 4 June 2009

Debdale Lock

Spent the day on the Staffs and Worcester, doing a boat test. Along the way, we met the two boats of Ladyline Hotel Boats. This is Lady Selena entering Debdale Lock.