Friday, 10 July 2015

To Bath

Jan had a restless night and consequentially was rather tired this afternoon. We quietly moved off the overnight mooring at the far end if the Dundas Aqueduct and slipped down to the water point on tick-over.  Actually the line of boats is quite long between Dundas and Bath so much of it was done on tick-over.  After the tank was full we continued west slowly passing numerous moored boats that look as If they don’t move very far.  I wouldn’t mind if they were bunched together but they seem to allow 3-4 boat lengths between them.  No doubt this provides them a more tranquil rural mooring but when combined they make for a slow day.  I can understand the frustration of hire boaters working to a schedule.  It’s probably why many of them pass moored boats so fast.  Not working to a deadline means we can just take our time. 

The Millbrook Swing Bridge appeared to be stuck in the closed position.  Fortunately a couple on their morning walk stopped to assist Jan.  At the next swing bridge (Bathampton) Jan had opened it for me when a hire boat appeared from the opposite direction.  Good timing on their part.  There were a few vacant moorings in Bathampton but the domestic batteries weren’t charged and we carried on eventually stopping on the 48 hour moorings at Walcot.  These are good moorings (must take a photo) overlooking Bath from the south.

In the afternoon I walked the towpath down to the junction with the River Avon.  There are two short tunnels, the first being Beckford Road Tunnel.

ist tunnel

and the second is Cleveland House tunnel.

2nd tunnel

Cleveland House is located immediately above the tunnel and was the headquarters of the canal company.  I had read somewhere there was a vertical shaft from the house through the roof of the tunnel which allowed the canal administration staff to collect the toll from boats using the canal.  There was a square opening in the roof of the tunnel but it wasn’t on the centreline and looked more like a missing stone.

hole in tunnel

Six locks take the canal down to the River Avon.

bottom lock

John and Christine worked nb Serendipity down through the bottom lock.  We have been passing each other since Hungerford and actually shared the Froxfield Locks.  They had a slight scare today after waking this morning to find themselves on a list (leaning over) and water underfoot.  There was 5 inches of water in the cabin bilge.

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