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Saturday, 31 August 2013

A small trip

This morning because its Saturday we had a bacon sarnie for breakfast and we decided not to travel far today we only went through two locks and stopped outside the village of Whittington, we visited the local hostelry the Whittington inn which was built in 1312 and was home to Dick Whittington grandfather and lady Jane Grey whose ghost is suppose to haunt the premises. 
At one of the locks you could see where they carved an opening and a stable into the sandstone rock so that they could  stable the horses that pulled the barges overnight, also on the bridge you can see where the ropes have eroded the stones over time.
See you tomorrow.

Friday, 30 August 2013

Leaving Stourport

This morning we had an early visit for Chris from Harrishoods company who is in the process of making a cratch cover and board for the boat, this is a cover for the front of the boat which should give us an extra room, he called because he had to re measure the bow area, after he had done this we broke our mooring and left Stourport.  

The canal  here is narrow with back gardens reaching the water, pretty little pubs sit tightly on the canal bank with their tables almost in the water, leaving the town the canal twists and turns with the wooded banks rising steeply. As we carried on towards Kidderminster we could here a whistle of a steam train and I quickly grabbed my camera and just caught a photo of it as it crossed the canal on its high train bridge.
The train is in the distance, 
We carried on and  reached the outskirts of Kidderminster and stopped at Tescos to do some shopping which was right next to the canal which was handy, we put away the shopping and carried on for a bit, pass the statue of Richard Baxter the 17th-c thinker who advocated unity and comprehension in religion.
And the over the aqueduct 
We then moored up again by a superstore complex, to pay a visit to Maplins, because one of our fellow boater at Upton recommended a type of tv ariel for the boat called a moonraker which he swore was the dog b#ll#cks, so we purchased one as we been having problems getting an reception when we are out and about. 
We then had some lunch and set off again .
This area is very unusual as there is lot of sandstone , which if you think about it is very far from the sea, some villages houses back rooms are cut into the rock, which hopefully I will be able to get a photo of, we then moored up for the night at a place called  Woverley the church here stands on a sandstone rock so steep that the building has to be approached by a zigzag path cut through the constantly eroding stone.
We then tried out our new didn't work , no bloody signal what a waste of money , we live an learn not to believe what some one says :-)
Off to bed early as no telly , but I did manage to play my XBox which is a bonus. See you tomorrow ..

Thursday, 29 August 2013

Off to Stourport on Severn

Today we left our mooring and said goodbye to a couple Quentin and Sue who were also doing what we are doing on their boat Twister ,we cruised passed Worcester Cathedral, and under the bridge and on water which. Haven't travelled before.

We went through a few manned big locks on the Severn, passing little riverside villages on the way, we moored up for lunch at the mooring by the "the Hamstall Inn" we thought of staying the night but decided to press on, we passed these sandstone cliffs where there was once a hermitage in these caves


We then came upon the entrance to the Stratford and Worcestershire canal where Stourport sits at the start of it, there are two set of lock entrances and because we are a narrowboat we had to use the top sided entrance, which was quite busy and we had wait our turn which took awhile


We had to go through a couple set of flight locks and through three basins, in one of the basins at the chandlery we purchased another calor gas bottle and a card in case we need it for a pump out, more money .

We went through another lock then moored up for the night, which lucky for us was by another pub so we decided to have a shandy at the Black Star which we can recommend as a nice pub.

See you tomorrow


Wednesday, 28 August 2013

Off on our travels again

Today with a little sad feeling as today we are leaving Upton on Severn after being in the marina for the last two months, we had a great time here and last weekend we had a great time at the three day music festival with the likes of old bands like Slade, Bad manner,Toyah,the Troggs, Buck Fizz, and the likes. Our friends Michael and Helen came up for the festival and we had a brilliant time with a lot of laughs and alcohol.
 We also must say  that we also met a lot of new friends at the marina like Liz and Stuart, and Kate and Gaz and others, so we had brekkie filled up with water and diesel which cost a fortune and another pump out and left the marina, we only moved up to Worcester and moored just outside of Diglis  Basin. Our plan was to make our way slowly up to Llangollen but now we will be make our way back to Nottingham as we are going to have the waste tank upgraded with a new bigger tank installed, so tonight we moor in Worcester and tomorrow we will make our way to Stourport. See you tomorrow 

Wednesday, 21 August 2013

Leaving Worcester

After a quiet uneventful night we were up and heading to Back to Upton, saying that yesterday day evening the river was quiet busy with men and girl rowers practising, Dragon boats pounding there beat drums so all the rowers  could keep their stroke, and canoeist racing each over , one of the latter came a cropper with his paddle hitting the tree branch which was close to our boat which over turned him, giving him an unexpected dip in the Severn.
The trip down the Severn was a pleasant one and we made good progress we then entered the marina at Upton only to find another boat in our mooring, so we had to moor a couple of boats up next to a boat called "Henry Thomas" were a nice young couple called Kate and Gaz reside.
We quickly tidied up "Essendee " as we decided to go back home to Cardiff  for a few nights to check if everything was in order at the maisonette , which on arriving it was. Denise done a couple of loads of washing and as we still have not got a cooker in the maisonette  we then went down the chippy for our dinner, watched telly on a big telly , which on one of the tv programmes that was being aired "nurses" a documentary about Cardiff and the Vale hospital showed  Denise's old unit which she was the ward manager before she retired showing all of her old staff at work.we then had a bath which was bliss and off to bed. See you tomorrow 

Tuesday, 20 August 2013

Down the canal to the river Severn

We awoke to a gorgeous sunny morning had a light breakfast and left our over night mooring,
We moved down the Droitwich canal and we had   seven locks to go through, unfortunately these are wide locks and poor Denise struggles to open the paddles and the gates ,  I help when I am not steering the boat but we are in no hurry so we plod along . Droitwich canal is not one of the best canals we have been on as I have said previously it is very over grown with reeds and there is no where really to stop except at Droitwich it self, we couldn't find the visitor moorings or we missed them , but part of the canal goes through a pretty park with a series of swing bridges which need the BW key to open then, but even though the park was pretty we felt that we didn't want to moor there as there was a lot of youngsters and people of the street drinking alcohol in large quantities . No this canal is not one of our favourites But at least we can mark it as another canal done on our map.

We left the canal and back on to the Severn, we then went through Bevere lock which was operated by a Canal & trust volunteer, and made our way down to Worcester where we moored up for the night, David and Lisa our niece ad her husband paid us a visit to see the boat and we had a good chat with them over a coffee. 

David was well impressed with our Houdini hatch and reckons it would be a great place to fish from, also it would be a good place to get pecked from the swans from as well.

Dave and Lisa then  left and we had a shower and read as tonight is the first time I have failed to get a television signal which I was really disappointed by not that I wanted to watch tv but because I failed at getting a signal. Back to Upton tomorrow , see ya


Monday, 19 August 2013

Down the Droitwich Canal

KToday we got up had bait of breakfast and of we set to Hanbury wharf  and then a sharp left turn on to the Droitwich canal which has only recently been fully opened  since July 2011. The canal has a few unusual locks where there are middle paddles to opened
 Also the canal ventures under the M5 which is a very low tunnel 
Approaching the tunnel
Just squeezing under 

Unfortunately our spot lamp was not low enough and smashed the glass.

Most of the canal was really overgrown with reeds which I thought would of been cut back by the canal trust but speaking to a girl on the path who told me hat one of the conditions of this canal being restored was that they keep the reeds  for wildlife to flourish.

Droitwich canal owe its existence mainly to salt which it transported to Bristol  which is found in underground streams, the Romans first started extraction of salt , the brine yields 2.5 lbs of salt per gallon which is ten times more than sea water at the height of production in the 19th century Drotwich was producing 120,000 ton per annum.
Doitwhich other claim to fame was the manufacturing of a long range transmitter which was used during world war 2 to jam the enemy's signals, today it broadcast radio 4 and 5.
We carried on out of Droitwich  and moored top side of a lock  by a village called Salwarpe  obviously a reference to salt, had a lovely beef dinner and will speak to you tomorrow.
Last evening we spotted a hot air baloon flying over the field just as the sun was setting.


Sunday, 18 August 2013

A small little jaunt

Hi all 

Decided to take the boat our from the marina for a couple of days as the weather was fine and looks good for the next few days we headed to Worcester then took a sharp right onto the Worcester and Birmingham canal, where in the lock there was a band playing the blues on their narrowboat , quite good as well,we then carried on up the canal with a few locks on the way, when passing the rugby ground we found that there was very little watermIn the canal but luckily we were able to just scrape up the canal until we got to the next lock where the water level got a little higher.
We then carried on to a little village called Tiberton, where we moored had a pint in the local  water hole "The Bridge" and went back to the boat had some food and watched telly , see you tomorrow 

Sunday, 11 August 2013

What a few days

 A few thing has happened in the last few days, first we went and bought a couple of more cupboards to use a storage in the bedroom, all was going well I made up the cupboards then went to mount them on the walls when the marine chippy came around and asked if I was having problems with my electrics, " no " I said then realised that none of our sockets were working and my trip switch on the main electric board kept going off, after trying different sockets on the pontoon and then changing the marina  electric fuses I then thought that I check where the cables were going on the boat, Yes you guessed it I had drilled through a cable whilst putting up brackets for the cupboards so took out the screw from the cable and lucky the electric came back on the night.
Next morning a trip to B&Q again to buy bits to repair the cable which I did after digging a big hole in the wall to find the cable , so cable repaired and wall cupboards all hung.
Saturday morning we decided to take the boat for a spin so we took a trip to Tewkesbury which was very pleasant 
Whilst on the River. Severn we went under part of the M50 , when ever we have driven over this we always are on the lookouts for Narrow boats which are either going up or down the river, so now we can say we have gone under this bridge 

Part of the bridge that not many people see the underneath.
We carried on to Tewkesbury where we moored up just outside of the lock which is the entrance for the River Avon , we spoke the lock keeper and he could remember for the family our first boat which we all hired the Gay Goblin , which for obviously PC reasons has been changed to just the Goblin.
We then had a shandy and a turkey baguette in " The Hop Pole " which has now been turned into a wetherspoons  pub .
This poor boat didn't moor up very well.

We then returned back to "Essendee " and proceeded to return to Upton on Severn, half way up we came across a narrowboat "Bumble Bee"which had broken down so we offered to tow them back to the marina we started to tie them up to our boat but then a rescue boat came to there assistance so we left them and returned to our mooring.
In the evening we went and had a few beers in Upton and listened to a very good Ac/Dc tribute band and the returned to Essendee and bed .

Tuesday, 6 August 2013

Trip to Ikea

Today we  got up quiet early had breakfast and then headed to Ikea Walsall, when. We designed the layout of the boat we wanted a  minimal look, unfortunately we didn't take it to account where to  store everything, so hence the trip to Ikea which I must say has some brilliant space saving ideas ,We saw a couple of cupboard s that will fit under the gunwales but was sure about the sizes so left them for another day, we then paid avisit to B&Q bought a kitchen cupboard , went back to the boat and installed it.. 

Monday, 5 August 2013

Marina life

Hi, stuck in the marina today as weather not that good, torrential rain forecasted all day, we paid our mooring fees for this month we were going to pay for only two weeks but it turned out cheaper to pay for the month. We then went to Malvern to do a bit of food shopping and also pay a visit to B&Q which we did, then came back and put up a shelf and cooked a nice beef dinner, as I said the weather has been poor all day so not a lot to write about. Can't wait to start travelling again, Warren the engineer is suppose to turning up on Wednesday to fit  a few cables to the engine and sort a few problems out.
Even though its raining it still warm . Speak to you soon 

Sunday, 4 August 2013

Back in Upton on Severm

Back in the marina, boat is as we left it,cats are settling in again, the only thing the weather has changed and its  raining , haven't done much today just played on the Xbox and watched tv , though for some reason the tv arial is playing up,and can't get all channels at the moment. As said before Upon is a lovely place so check out the web page to side what it has to offer , we are more than likely going to stay here for a couple of weeks , especially as the Marina party is on Saturday night, so parteeeeeeeeee speak to you soon ....

Saturday, 3 August 2013

Start of our adventures part two

Again apologies for not keeping this blog up to date for the last few weeks , but our life has been hectic, with moving from our old house and in to our new maisonette . 
Can not say it been the easiest of moves with the solicitors being a real pain in the ar*e but we are now sort of settled into our new property and tomorrow we are off to the boat, so our adventure will start again so please keep reading our blog. See you tomorrow