Sunday, 14 June 2015

A Change of Plan

Our intention was to stay on the mooring at Theale until Monday, however we had an email at noon which changed our plans. As a consequence of this we cruised the short distance to Aldermaston.  Saturday wasn’t our preferred day to move because we assumed the hire boats would be leaving the ABC base at Aldermaston heading towards Reading and we didn’t want to meet novices during their first four hours.  As it was we didn’t see a single hire boat!

At Tyle Mill we stopped to top up the water tank and dispose of the rubbish.  Whilst there we were approached by a local boater who informed us he had started a business supplying services to local boaters.  He currently supplies coal, gas and blue, but intends to also supply red diesel and a toilet pump out.

His contact details are:

  • Paul Diprose
  • Mob: 07503583523

The services are supplied from his boat and he informed us he planned to cover the area from Reading to Little Bedwyn.

services boatWe carried on towards Aldermaston and were fortunate to meet a boat at Ufton Lane swing bridge.  One of their crew was already operating the controls and we were able to pass through without the need for Jan to alight.  The offside lower gate at Towney Lock kept on swinging open.  I was down in the lock (it’s deep) on the boat and Jan couldn’t hold the lower gate shut whilst simultaneously raising on the of the top gate paddles.  In the end I managed to hold the lower gate shut with the stern fender whilst Jan raised one paddle.

We rounded the corner on the approach to Padworth lock to find a breasted up pair of working boats immediately in front on the lock landing.

paired boats

Two things immediately came to mind.

  1. Novice hire boaters will have an interesting time trying to get against the lock landing.
  2. Paul Diprose (Tyle Mill) already appears to have some competition.

We already knew from our previous stay at Aldermaston that the chances of finding a mooring before Aldermaston Lock would be very slim.  However we managed to get on the offside immediately above the lock.  It’s a concrete edge and the bow is partially protruding across the bywash.  

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