Saturday, 28 October 2017

GH Marina

Ran the Webasto in the morning (3.5 hours). Packed up.

Friday, 27 October 2017

Fancy Bridge 73A to Great Haywood marina

Cold even for a 10.30 start, but a really nice, sunny day. Went down to Dexta for diesel (170 litres @ 64p), then winded at Bridge 68, stopped for lunch at the Shugborough bridge again, and came back to the marina in time to get a pump-out (£19 with Blue).

7.3 miles, 3 locks, 4.5 engine hours

Thursday, 26 October 2017

Carr House Bridge 89 to Fancy Bridge 73A

Generally fine for travel, albeit cloudy. Came down past the marina, the junction and Haywood lock, and tied up just after the Fancy Bridge, looking out over Shugborough. Good TV signal (but not much to watch) but intermittent broadband.

8.2 miles, 4 locks, 4 engine hours

Wednesday, 25 October 2017

Barlaston to Carr House Bridge 89

Fine, sunny day, though a little chilly first thing. great for cruising and not much traffic. Stopped in Stone on the mooring we stayed overnight on the way up, in order to do a bit of shopping and then pushed on through the remaining locks and Aston lock. Tied up just before Bridge 89 – relatively isolated and just a bit of the sound of the main road coming across the fields.

5.9 miles, 9 locks, 4.1 hours

Tuesday, 24 October 2017

Milton to Barlaston

Weather forecast had been terrible and we'd thought about staying in Milton for the day. When we got up at about 9 it wasn't raining and the forecast was better, so we decided to go after all. Encountered some rain but not a lot.

Travel was mostly OK but had its moments. Had to wait for an extra boat to come up the Bedford Road staircase locks. Then we had some excitement in Stoke top lock, with not dropping one of the top paddles. Swept Erin Mae back towards the cill and the prop wouldn't drive her forwards. Felt dangerous and scary, though the stern gear was probably just clear of catching the cill. Mgt had to drop the bottom paddles, while I climbed up and opened the top paddles to float Erin Mae. That was when we realised the paddle had not been dropped. The gates were very heavy and the whole experience not good. However, it feels and sounds as though no damage has been done.

Meanwhile we'd gone up to Bridge 117 and found the GT Autogas store where they sell 13Kg bottles of gas for £21. Winded at the Toby Carvery.

The rest of the locks were OK and we ended a long day at the Wedgwood moorings between Trentham and Barlaston.

10.6 miles, 9 locks, 1 lift bridge, 6.9 engine hours.

Monday, 23 October 2017

Hollybush Inn to Milton

Grey day, bit of drizzle at times. Came up the three locks to the junction and then took on water at Endon Bank. Moored up on the best bit (the first bit) of the Milton armco so we were out of sight of Bridge 18.

5.2 miles, 9 locks, 2 lift bridges, 4.5 engine hours

Sunday, 22 October 2017

Hollybush mooring

Kit & Angie's Golden Anniversary weekend. Ran the engine in the morning for charging and hot water. Peter & Jane picked us up around 10.30 and took us over to where the family was staying. Becky's plans for it to be a surprise worked a treat. It was a brilliant day. We got to walk on the Tissington Trail before afternoon tea at Callow Hall. After getting back to the house, we had a lot of music with everybody, including the children, before eating. A huge amount of fun was had.

P&J dropped us off at Erin Mae afterwards at about 10 p.m.

0 miles, 2 engine hours

Saturday, 21 October 2017

Hollybush mooring

Wet and windy day. We decided that, if necessary, we would ask forgiveness for staying put. Ran the engine in the evening as there's very little from the solar.

0 miles,  1.5 engine hours

Hollybush Inn to Oak Meadow Ford Lock and back

Tim and Chris came for the day. Rain died away as they came, so we had a good day's boating, even if it was a bit chilly. The Churnet gauge was in the red at Oak Meadow Ford Lock, so we had lunch and then winded for the return journey. Tied up outside the Hollybush in the same place, but facing the other way.

7 miles, 6 locks, 6.6 engine hours

Thursday, 19 October 2017

Leek to the Hollybush Inn

Cool to start with, and rain before we arrived, which came on heavy after mooring up just short of the Hollybush Inn.

3.5 miles, 3 locks, 2.6 engine hours

Wednesday, 18 October 2017

Milton to Leek

Set out just after 10. Cool but mostly dry day. Picked up water at Endon Bank. Canal very shallow and slow – with the water stop added almost an hour to the CanalPlan estimate. Winded before the Leek moorings and reversed into place.

7.5 miles, 6 locks, 2 lift bridges, 5.4 engine hours

Tuesday, 17 October 2017

Barlaston to Milton

Very windy last night – took the aerial completely off the roof to stop it bouncing. Otherwise a good night.

Today was chilly but sunny. Got away around 9 and made good progress through the locks. Only the last two of the Stoke flight were against us. Water at Etruria. Then up the staircase. Trouble with the offside paddle on the very top gate meant the top chamber wouldn't fill until we realised what was wrong. After that, things were straightforward. Took the chimney off at Etruria in preparation for Bridge 9.

Canal very shallow, and leaves tended to gather round the prop. The lift-bridge now has a control panel on the towpath side, which makes everything easier. Nice to see more housing development along the canal in Stoke, including one estate with two kilns left as heritage-markers.

Tied up just beyond Bridge 19 in Milton, as usual.

10 miles, 9 locks, 1 lift bridge, 6.7 engine hours

Monday, 16 October 2017

Stone to Barlaston

Hurricane Ophelia day. Some rain overnight, and a bit more cloudy and blustery than promised. The third lock on the Meaford flight took a very long time to fill, with a lot of leaking. Tied up south of the bridge for the Wedgwood factory. It's a bit exposed to the wind, but not too and, and the TV signal is good.

Extraordinary sun / cloud combination at lunch time – got some good photos with a tripod.

3.8 miles, 6 locks, 2.8 engine hours

Saturday, 14 October 2017

Great Haywood to Stone

Wed 11th October: Drove to Bransgore
Thursday 12th October: Mgt's dental appointment + lots of washing
Friday 13th October: Drove back to Great Haywood

Today went to Shugborough for a celebratory birthday coffee and to get some honey for P/J & K/A – which they didn't have, so bought some Staffordshire honey from the Canal Farm Shop instead. The Shugborough Danish pastry was yummy!

Left the marina at about 12.30, and reversed out from the mooring because of the wind. Then a dry and sometimes sunny run to Stone. Boater who helped us through the first Stone lock told us of a space behind his boat on the Chandlery's moorings, where no-one would mind us staying over the weekend, so we tucked it in there, above the second lock.

9.6 miles, 6 locks, 4.7 engine hours

Tuesday, 10 October 2017

Acton Trussell to Great Haywood

Nice day for travel, and stopped at Tixall Wide for lunch. Boater behind complimented me on the steering to moor technique! Got back to the marina mid-afternoon and got a pump-out (£19 with Blue, so £3 cheaper than Anglo-Welsh).

7.6 miles, 2 locks, 3.8 engine hours

Monday, 9 October 2017

Penkridge to Acton Trussell

Cloudy day, a bit of sun later. An oncoming boater said there was a tree across the cut at Radford, so we decided to stop at the "Marsh Harrier" field, above Deptmore lock. Nice relaxing afternoon, with just a bit of the M6 in the background.

3.8 miles, 5 locks, 2.5 engine hours

Sunday, 8 October 2017


Joined with the parish church – intriguing mix of evangelical theme and high church ritual. Went for lunch at the Star, and then stayed on our mooring for the day. SG was reading around 70 at 6 p.m., so figured there was no need to run the engine (65 by bedtime, 51 in the morning).

0 miles, 0 engine hours

Saturday, 7 October 2017

Cross Green to Penkridge

Cool, cloudy day for cruising. Very little traffic. Stopped at Gailey for water, came down five locks and moored up just after the Cross Keys pub, between Filance bridge and lock. Walked down into the village for some supplies and to see where we might have a roast dinner.

7.3 miles, 5 locks, 4 engine hours

Friday, 6 October 2017

Bridge 8, SUC to Cross Green

Largely fine day for travel, with a few spots of rain but also some sunshine. Called at Oxley Marine to get a 250 hour service done. We're only just over 230 hours, but we were passing so it seemed wise.

People cleaning hire boats at the Autherley Junction stop lock were completely blocking the landing. And then, while we were tied up at Oxley Marine, NB Marquis stopped for fuel and thought nothing of bumping us quite heavily.

Moored up just short of the Fox and Anchor Inn at Cross Green.

6.3 miles, 1 lock, 2.7 engine hours

Thursday, 5 October 2017

Norbury Junction to Bridge 8, SUC

Wrapped up well for this trip, but actually had a reasonable amount of sunshine.

The storm last night was not too bad. Rain in the evening but cleared up. The wind overnight sounded a little scary, but didn't bump Erin Mae around at all, partly because of the sheltered mooring. There were masses of leaves on the boat in the morning, which we cleared up after mooring up at the Bridge 8 VM.

12.5 miles, 1 lock, 5.3 engine hours