|This Month's Totals and Average|
|97.20 miles||44 locks||54.13 hrs||2.61 lmph|
Pat spent the whole day packing and getting ready to head back to the house. I cleared the loo and popped round to the office to pay our moorings for the coming year. After a sunny start, it clouded over mid-afternoon, with light showers of drizzle. Quiet evening watching TV - Strictly has started again .
|0.00 miles||0 locks||0.00 hrs||0.00 lmph|
Last day of the "Summer Cruise" - beautiful sunshine. Took our time moving, but were away by 10:00. Pottered our way north past Dadlington to Sutton Cheney, mooring at the café for lunch.
After lunch, continued pottering north past Shenton to Market Bosworth, mooring on our berth at the marina at 15:15. Checked the cars - neither started, but Paul on "Moose" managed a jump-start for both of us.
Pat brought her car to the berth and started her packing, while I did a quick trip to the shops for essentials until after Pat goes home.
|6.12 miles||0 locks||2.68 hrs||2.28 lmph|
Took our time getting going, on a bright cloudy morning - sun watery through high cloud, but lightly obscured with patchy lower cloud. On the move just before 10:00, taking the short distance to Marston Junction and turning left up the Ashby Canal towards base. Pottered along again today, not really in any hurry - too short for two full days, but too long to do it one go. Passed Bulkington, Bramcote and Burton Hastings, mooring at the A5 at Limekiln Bridge for lunch. Derek & Ann stopped on their way past with "Ursinity" and had a chat.
After lunch, we moved on again through Hinckley, then passing Trinity Marina and Higham, mooring just north of Ashby Canal Centre at Stoke Golding. There had been a few (very) short periods of sunshine, but generally quite nice.
|9.60 miles||0 locks||4.20 hrs||2.29 lmph|
Slept in this morning. A bright morning, although the sun wasn't actually visible through the cloud. Finally on the move by 10:00, continuing southwards on the Coventry Canal. Kept an eye out for Jane ("Slow Gin") as we passed Harvey's Yard, but no sign. Continued round to Hartshill CRT Depot and took water. Noted "Go With the Flow" moored outside Springwood Haven - waved to Ian as we passed. Continued on through Nuneaton, with lunch on the move. The cloud had alternated between slight thinning and thickening again all morning. Clearing Nuneaton and passing the end of the (now derelict) Griff Arm, it thickened to the point of looking like rain, so moored up south of Bridge 18 for the day - right call (for a change), by 15:00 the rain had arrived.
|7.61 miles||0 locks||3.20 hrs||2.38 lmph|
Woke this morning to a thunderstorm! Not going anywhere until it clears.
Saw Peter aboard "Sonflower" as we were waiting for the rain to cease. The rain finally cleared around 10:30 and we got on the go shortly thereafter, continuing up the flight. Everything was against us, and we realised we were behind any possible chance of getting to the top before lunch. Changed plan and decided to stop for shopping and lunch in the King's Head Pound, mooring there 12:20.
Walked into town and had lunch at Costa. Went shopping for chocolates and wool, then on to the Co-op for stores, before returning to "Paws".
Boaters please note -
The Co-op near the station closes for refurbishment end Sept '23 until into the new year.
An alternative can be found on Long Street greyhound.likes.steps .
Ready to go again by 14:45, we let go and headed up the remainder of the flight. Not a volunteer in sight, but fortunately all locks were with us so we got an easy passage. At the top, we paused briefly to clear the loo, then moved on to the first stretch of mooring and found a space. All tied up just after 16:00, we thought we had done a good job.
More heavy rain arrived just after dinner, but cleared quickly to a dry night.
|1.50 miles||9 locks||3.68 hrs||3.91 lmph|
Slept in this morning! By the time we had finished breakfast and got dressed, Sarah had left for work - disappointed not to have said goodbye. Once ready, let go and continued through Amington, just pottering. Continued out past Alvecote and Pooley Hall, then on through Polesworth and Bradley Green (letting two boats overtake, obviously in a hurry) to the bottom of the Atherstone Flight. A lovely sunny morning, but with a brisk wind. Started up the flight, ascending Locks 11 and 10, before mooring for the day just south of Whitley Bridge 47.
After a late lunch, spent the afternoon catching up on the diary and maps - sorry to our avid readers for the delay.
|6.27 miles||2 locks||3.50 hrs||2.36 lmph|
Up promptly again to get to the church hall for an 09:00 Communion Service for members, presided over by Kim. After the service, and clearing the hall, most of us went round to the church to join with the congregation of St Paul's for their morning service.
After the service, most of those who remained were heading for a Sunday Lunch at a local hostalry. The meal would not be served until around 13:30 and Pat wished to get on the move, so we said our goodbyes and let go. I reversed back to Fazeley Mill Marina and we topped up the water and cleared the loo, before heading back to the Junction and turning right.
Leaving Fazeley through Kettlebrook and Glascote, we ascended the 2 locks and continued out towards Amington. After a few showers in the morning, it became a sunny afternoon, although the wind remained brisk. At Bridge 68, around 16:00, we moored up outside our friend Sarah's house and invited her aboard for afternoon tea. We chatted on until just after 18:00 when she left and we sat down to a quiet dinner. Saw Andy pass aboard "Spring Water" as we were chatting.
|2.93 miles||2 locks||1.81 hrs||2.73 lmph|
A prompt start to the day, with a breakfast of rolls with sausage and bacon at 09:00, prepared for us by the "coffee staff" at St Paul's - very tasty. Retreating to the church building, BCF had a short time of worship, followed by a presentation with discussion on how to go about evangelism, given by "Time to Revive" based in the USA - very interesting.
After our packed lunches, a number of our members went out for a Prayer-Walk with the TTR team around the local area. The remainder of us chatted over games and quizzes, with most of the ladies knitting or crocheting squares to form blankets to be giving to needy boaters.
Dinner was a "bring-your-own-takeaway", followed by a quiz evening hosted by John & Gill - great fun was had, a good evening's quizzing.
A nice morning, Pat spent it baking ready for the evening. She then went shopping after lunch. As she returned, the skies opened and we were treated to a downpour! Gwyneth got caught in the rain on her way from the shops to visit us in the afternoon - she stayed for coffee and a chat while drying out.
We started gathering for the BCF annual Fellowship Weekend in St Paul's Church hall around 17:00. We had "bring-and-share" nibbles and drinks, along with much chatting and catching up on 'gossip' - great to meet up again with old friends, and make new ones. After 'supper', we gathered round for our now-annual "BCF Entertains Itself" - members doing turns reading poetry, singing, or telling anecdotes. After a great evening, we retired to our respective boats around 21:00.
A beautiful sunny morning greeted us today. Got on the move by 10:30 and reversed back to Fazeley Junction, then turned southwards past the old mill and Millfield School, mooring at the services point outside Fazeley Mill Marina. Topped up the water, cleared the rubbish and emptied the three loo cassettes. Had a brief chat with Jackie, and "complained" that she didn't have any ice creams
Once ready, we decided that we would have a short cruise to Kingsbury before mooring up for the BCF Fellowship Weekend. Continued south through the farmland to the winding hole below Curdworth Bottom Lock, turned and returned northwards, lunching on the move. Noted that Tony & Jacqui's "Timewarp" was back in the water, but it appeared to be different owners - we wish Tony & Jacqui all the best whatever their choice. Arriving back at Fazeley, we moored at Tolson's Footbridge by St Paul's Church at 13:30.
Chris ("Essence") joined Pat for coffee mid-afternoon, while I joined Adrian.
|5.97 miles||0 locks||2.77 hrs||2.16 lmph|
A wet and windy morning on Tuesday, although we did hear a tawny owl calling around 06:00. With the intermittant showers (small gaps between), we eventually decided to stay put for the day. Had a very lazy day doing puzzles and reading. Hopefully it will be better weather tomorrow as we must get water and clear the loo.
Unfortunately, another morning of bad weather on Wednesday. Heard the owls again this morning, despite the rain and wind. Held back awaiting an improvement in the weather - but it never came. Eventually decided we could just manage to last out another night, and stayed put again. The rain did eventually stop late afternoon, with a better forecast for tomorrow.
Another short day planned. On the move promptly, leaving Hopwas and dawdling through the farmland towards Fazeley. A sunny morning, but with a forecast of rain later. Moored at Sutton Road Bridge and walked down to Ventura Retail Park for stores.
Returned to "Paws" for lunch as the clouds turned darker. Rain arrived after lunch, while we were stowing the stores, but didn't last long.
Mid-afternoon, after a few short bursts of rain, we decided to go down nearer the centre of town to get mail and pharmacy dealt with. We had hoped to moor around Peel's Wharf, but the whole section was full. Arrived at the Junction, had a brief chat with Trevor & Janet on "Grace", then went straight ahead, mooring almost opposite the CRT yard - only one boat to be seen!
While Pat cleared up, I walked to the Post Office for the mail, then to the pharmacy to get my meds - they actually had everything today. Walked back to "Paws" for a quiet evening in the sun.
|2.86 miles||0 locks||1.55 hrs||1.85 lmph|
A bright morning, with the potential for sun later. Walked to the chapel for the service - Harvest Thanksgiving. It should have been led by Rev. Jo but we were advised that she had taken Covid at the end of the week and was unable to come, so it was led by Brian - great service with well-known hymns. Our best wishes for a speedy recover go to Jo and her children. After coffee, returned to "Paws" for lunch. It had been very sunny during the service, but was now clouding over.
During lunch, we were hailed by Barrie & Margaret on "Rusalka" - they hovered alongsided for a chat and catch-up. Great to see them again. Had a quiet afternoon despite the offer of coffee/tea being extended to the congregation at chapel.
Having only a short day planned, we had a long lie-in. Eventually letting go at 10:40, we winded and returned north to Streethay Wharf for the oil filter information - turns out my part number is correct, and they didn't have the part. Thanking them for their help (but not ordering for delivery next Thursday), we reversed back to King's Orchard Marina to wind (couldn't get round at the Wharf), then pottered southwards through Huddlesford Junction where they were preparing for next weekend's Historic Boat Rally, and on through Whittington to Hopwas. As we were coming through Hopwas Wood, we had a visit from a hitch-hiking butterfly . Intending to moor outside the Methodist Church back door, we headed through the village, but found no spaces where we wanted (south of Dixon's Bridge) so reversed back to the section just south of the two pubs and squeezed into a space there.
A bright day, with occasional glimpses of full sun and a slight breeze.
|5.48 miles||0 locks||2.97 hrs||1.85 lmph|
A far nicer day, awakened by the sun shining in the portholes. Up fairly promptly, and away by 09:30. Weren't quite quick enough, though, to beat the first boat to the lock so ended up behind for the whole morning. Descended Wood End Lock and continued round the bend to Shadehouse Lock, where we found CRT Volunteers waiting to assist us down. More assistance at Middle Lock, and the keeper at Junction Lock even came round to work the swingbridge for us after the junction. Moored up for water and services.
It took 45 mins for two trips with 3 cassettes and rubbish while taking water to deal with everything. Moved forward to the first available mooring and stopped again for lunch. Walked round to The Laughing Duck for a meal, chatting with a group from USA about canals and boating.
Replete again (i.e. "stuffed"), we returned to "Paws" and let go again for the run south to Streethay. Stopped at Streethay Wharf to get a replacement gas bottle and an oil filter - will have to go back as the unit number appears to have changed from my manual, Streethay are checking with Barrus. Moved on to moor outside King's Orchard Marina for the night. Still nice and sunny.
The What3Words location doesn't actually reflect the condition at the mooring - it has been cut
|4.45 miles||3 locks||2.75 hrs||2.71 lmph|
After heavy rain overnight, it had started to ease to light rain and drizzle by breakfast. With it forecast to continue, and plenty of time, we elected to save the soaking by staying put today. The drizzle did continue into the afternoon, and a cool breeze made for a chilly day - actually had to put the heating on for a while! Once again it was busy with traffic in both directions.
A much cooler morning, today, but still sunny. We were up quicker than we have been recently, and on the move by 09:40, heading south out of Rugeley. About 45 mins later, we came to Ash Tree Boat Club, and moored just the other side of the bridge at the water point by Spode Hall. Topped up the water, then got the washing machine on.
Once ready, we headed off, eastwards through the cutting created from the original tunnel, and on through the villages of Armitage, Handsacre and Tuppenhurst. Very busy with traffic. Continued on through the tree-lined avenue between the fields, and past Kings Bromley Marina. Noted a kingfisher as we skirted the wood at Wood End, before mooring just above Wood End Lock for the night. The sun remained out for the remainder of the day, although there has been a distinct autumnal feel to the air.
|6.47 miles||0 locks||2.85 hrs||2.27 lmph|
After another hot night, we were woken by a moorhen practicing its balancing, using our pole on the roof. We took our time getting up due to the later service time at the church here. Walked up to the church, a more traditional service today with some good hymns. Usual coffee afterwards, before we returned for lunch aboard. Light showers with occasional sunshine peeping through for the remainder of the afternoon.
A sunny, but initially cooler, start to the morning on Monday. Walked up to the town for a general walk around the shops, lunch at Costa , and return via Morrison's for stores and to collect a parcel. A mixture of sunshine and showers throughout the day, but no sign of the forecast thunderstorms.
The heavy rain overnight slowly reduced to drizzle during the morning. We had planned to walk into town again to visit the 3rd woolshop (closed Mondays) and to get a couple of things forgotten yesterday, but Pat held back until the drizzle ceased (after lunch). I decided that if we went up town now, it would be too late to move afterwards, so Pat went up herself while I babysat charging the batteries (would have been done as we were moving). It remained dull and damp for the remainder of the day.
The sun rose above a slight mist covering the canal. It had been a hot night! We had a long-lie as there was no rush. Eventually on the move at 10:00, Pat walked south to prepare Haywood Lock while I took "Paws" north to the Junction to turn her. The Junction and services berth were very busy again today. Returned south to the lock to find a queue of 3 boats waiting to go down. Descended in our turn and continued southwards in the increasing heat. By the time we arrived at Colwich Lock, the queue had grown to 4, the lead boat being a day-boat with newbies aboard, so a teaching session was in order. Finally clear of Colwich, we continued round to "The Taft" where we moored again to deliver stores to Peter & Julie, and have a coffee, slightly later than expected.
Just after 13:00, we returned to "Paws" for lunch aboard while Julie headed off for rest and meds. After lunch, we left and headed south to Rugeley. Sufficient mooring to give a choice, and we elected to stop just north of Leathermill Lane Bridge. Quiet remainder to a hot afternoon (outside temp showing as 32°C).
|5.17 miles||2 locks||3.17 hrs||2.26 lmph|
Lovely sunny morning, but we were later up than planned. The Admiral took longer than expected to get on the move so we finally got under way at 10:10, ascending Haywood Lock and heading for the services berth. Services were very busy, with the area looking like one of those children's 'slider' puzzles.
Eventually got water, loo and rubbish done (the boatyard didn't have the oil filter I was looking for), and we reversed back to a mooring just south of the Junction (there was nothing just north). By this time, we had missed the deadline for breakfast at the café (very disappointed to miss it) so walked up and did our shopping before returning aboard for lunch.
I decided I couldn't be bothered moving round to Tixall so we just stayed put again. Fortunately, the sun stayed out for the afternoon, topping up the batteries sufficiently.
|0.33 miles||1 locks||0.58 hrs||2.28 lmph|
After a quiet night, we woke to a beautiful morning. Once ready, we returned up to the gazebo in the garden for a final chat over coffee, then moved off, continuing west as the next winding hole is at Great Haywood. Headed west through Wolseley Bridge and ascended Colwich Lock, then headed on with the intention of stopping short of Haywood Lock to post mail, then ascend for the services berth and on west to Tixall wide for a couple of nights.
When the Admiral returned from the postbox, we had lunch, then she decided we would just stay put for the night. Unfortunatley, we were under the trees so minimal solar panel charging, and only 1½ hour engine on the way along from "The Taft". It meant that we had to sit with the engine on for a further 2 hours during the afternoon to get sufficient charge - disappointed. Had a long chat the team on the boat which moored astern - they volunteer on the Great Central Railway.
|2.14 miles||1 locks||1.50 hrs||2.09 lmph|
A very misty start to the day, but very pleasant. Pat took a quick walk up to Morrison's (held from yesterday in case Julie needed supplies), then we let go and headed through the town - very busy. Crossed the River Trent over Brindley's aqueduct and headed out to "The Taft" where we moored to visit Peter & Julie. Caught up on gossip over coffee. Both looking very well. We were invited to stop over at their berth for the night, which we accepted.
Had lunch back aboard "Paws" (due to Julie's condition). Took water from their tap in the afternoon, then went back up to chat again after Julie had taken her rest and medication. Dinner aboard and a quiet evening.
|2.37 miles||0 locks||1.13 hrs||2.09 lmph|
Fhi flew out from East Midlands Airport at breakfast time. We went out for shopping after breakfast (to Tesco), but were back in time for 'online coffee' with Doncaster just before lunch. We connected just as Fhi was landing at Ciampino airport (Rome).
We had a quiet afternoon, pottering. Fhi eventually got home around 15:00, after her bus was held up by an accident.
Fhi's last day aboard - a lovely hot sunny day (should get her back into the mood for Italy!). Let go and continued northwards, ascending Wood Lane Lock, noting more HS2 construction work. Continued out through the villages of Tuppenhurst, Handsacre and Armitage, interspersed with farmland and bounded by trees. Very busy with boats. Rumour from those we met was that Rugeley was busy, so we took the first available mooring and stopped for lunch, after which Fhi left to catch her train.
|Totals and Average with Fhi|
|88.71 miles||52 locks||49.24 hrs||2.86 lmph|
Fhi's trains were either cancelled or delayed, but she got to her hotel for dinner and a quiet night - her flight is early tomorrow. Quiet remainder to the afternoon for us, after putting things back to our 'normality'. Not planning to move tomorrow.
|7.19 miles||1 locks||3.55 hrs||2.31 lmph|
All three of us went to church, Fhi meeting our friends there. It was a Communion service led by Revs. Roger and Liz. Usual coffee after the service took longer than usual with everyone wanting to chat to Fhi.
Headed back to "Paws" for lunch then set of for a short day back to Fradley. Left Alrewas and ascended the locks back to Fradley, stopping once again at the services berth to clear the loo (and for Fhi to get a coffee), before ascending to the Junction. This time, we continued ahead towards Rugeley, ascending Middle and Shadehouse Locks. Squeezed into a mooring space above Shadehouse for the night.
Today was a very sunny day - Fhi actually got warm enough to take her fleece off! - the sun lasting well into the evening.
|2.09 miles||7 locks||2.37 hrs||3.84 lmph|
Up promptly, but stood chatting to the team on "Forget me Knot" moored behind (Jamie, Debbie, Isla & Matteo). Finally got on the move at 09:45, continuing on towards Fradley. Keeping the speed up to try to regain some of the lost time, we made good progress through Hopwas village and Whittington, before stopping at Streethay Wharf for fuel - price had gone up a little since last time, but still excellent value for money.
Once fuelled, we continued on to radley Junction, turning right and descending Junction Lock before pulling in at the services berth. Cleared the loo and rubbish, but managed to collect lunch from The Laughing Duck and eat it while the water was being filled.
"Paws" and crew all refilled, we continued on again, descending the four locks to Alrewas (Keeper's, Hunt's, Common and Bagnall). We winded "Paws" below bagnall Lock and reversed back under Bridge 48 and moored up for the night - later than expected but still not overly late. Carry-out dinner from Delhi Divan , this time not getting a drenching from a thunderstorm .
A dull and drizzly start to the day cleared by lunchtime, giving a very warm afternoon and evening.
|10.23 miles||5 locks||5.20 hrs||2.93 lmph|
Another prompt start for a reasonably long day. Left our overnight mooring and started down the Curdworth Flight (total 11 locks). "Heron" was also about ready to leave so we mutually agreed to draw paddles for each other depending upon who was in front. We descended Top Lock then moored at the water point - "Heron" overtook and continued down. Once watered, we also continued down, with assistance from the Volunteer team clearing out the culvert at Lock 3. Again continuing down, we again noted the works for HS2 (a blot on the landscape!). We had picked up quite a convoy as a result of the slower passage through the locks with broken paddle-gear, with "Ebinka" bringing up the rear and 3 boats ahead.
By the time we had reached Lock 10, we decided to stop for lunch. "Ebinka" overtook at this point. After lunch moored at the old wharf by the waterpark, we descended the last lock and continued into Fazeley. Originally, we had intended to stop at Fazeley Marina to dump the loo, and at Ventura to stock up on victuals, but realised we could wait until tomorrow at Fradley and Alrewas for these, thus saving time today.
Leaving Fazeley, we continued out towards Fradley, intending to stop when had gone as far as time allowed. We eventually moored outside the Methodist Church back gate at Hopwas just after 16:00.
After a damp and drizzly start, it cleared to a bright afternoon with some sunshine.
|8.42 miles||11 locks||5.67 hrs||3.43 lmph|