Tuesday, 21 July 2015

The last of Kintbury

It is possible to complete a circular walk to the east of Kintbury by walking the towpath towards Newbury and then crossing the canal at Shepherd’s Bridge.  From there a public footpath leads you across the fields to Irish Hill Road.

Walking it in the late evening sun was a pleasure.  The first point of interest was the Kennet Horse Boat Company trip boat.  It’s horse drawn (it is all in the name really).  When not in use it’s moored mid stream.

trip boat kintbury I continue to be surprised by the number of people I meet when walking in the countryside.  It was after 8pm and I met five others out walking (small country large population).  In NZ or Australia I might walk for 3 hours and not meet anyone.

evening walkThe final part of the route brought me back through Kintbury where I noticed the following roadside bollard.  It’s not the first time I have seen one but I’ve only seen them in England.  This one was on the corner where the adjacent building was located very close to the road.  It was obvious the purpose of the bollard was to protect the building from vehicle strike.

corner protector This morning we were again up early and ready to cruise before 8am.  The first task was to travel the short distance down to the water point and breast up against Maid of the Locks.  We were one of three boats wanting water from a tap with very weak pressure.  Consequentially it was 9.30am before we actually started the cruise.

At the second lock we found the lock against us and the lower gates open.  Was there a boat crew ahead leaving gates open?  At the third lock we caught up with a wide beam that was making very slow progress.  They were aiming to reach Thatcham but making slow progress.  We found ourselves catching up with them at every subsequent lock.

waiting at the lock

After four and a half hours we reached the swing bridge at Newbury finding a vacant 24 hour mooring just beyond.  Pete & Alison, (nb Maid of the Locks) our cruising partners for the past few days have an appointment on the Thames and had to keep going.  We were sorry to see them leave but there is always the possibility our cruising routes will converge at a later date.  Hopefully they managed to stay ahead of the slow wide beam as they headed towards Reading.  After a late lunch we dropped down through the town lock onto a 48 hour mooring beside Victoria Park.  The only other boat moored here is Sola Gratia but there’s no sign of guide dog Oakley, Tracey or Tim.


Jennie said...

Tom - from reading Sola Gratia's facebook page it appears that Tim's Dad is very ill and he has had to go to Bournemouth. Tracey and Oakley were here yesterday, but I am not sure what the current situation is. Safe travels. I think it was you stalking us today!! No doubt we will get our own back again!! Jennie and Chris

Tom and Jan said...

Hi Jennie
We will look out for Tracey and Oakley today. You will stalk us today because we're not moving until Wednesday.