Saturday, 29 August 2015

Formula One Start

Yesterday afternoon CRT advised the boaters waiting at the top of the flight that the damaged lock was now open for assisted passage.  The area in front of the top lock immediately turned into the start of a F1 race with boaters jockeying for pole position.

F1 Start

We made the decision to wait another day and let the rush dissipate.  However, being curious I grabbed a windlass and wandered down the flight to see how CRT had made their temporary repair.

They have strapped and propped the damaged gate in the closed position.

lock 12 fix1 lock 12 fix2

This is a quicker temporary solution than my own, but it does restrict lock usage to narrowboats.  Actually CRT were on site and required all boats to be bow hauled in and out of the top gates.  They also only allowed the paddle on the non damaged side to be used to fill the lock.  Finally, transit was limited to one boat at a time.  This resulted in a queue quickly forming above and below the lock.


I spent a pleasant afternoon assisting boaters up and down Lock 11.  There were too many gongoozlers and angry boaters at Lock 12 (affected lock) for me to want to be near it. By the time I left the above pound  Lock 11 also had a queue of boats waiting to go down.

This morning we departed our mooring at 7.30am, stopping to top up the water tank.  It was a quiet run down to Lock 11.  A peaceful and sunny morning.

M1 & RailwayLock 9 looks so tranquil. A busy adjacent M1 Mortorway on one side and the main railway line to Birmingham on the other means it’s actually rather noisy!

We reached the pound above Lock 11 just after 9am to find the end of the queue.  Fewer boats than yesterday afternoon and the boaters were far more sensible in controlling the flow of boats through the lock.  By 12 noon we had reached the head of the queue and were waiting for a boat to come up.  Eventually they arrived and we noticed the kiwi flag at the bow.


Only time for a quick “kia ora” and advice that they spend 6 months of every year cruising the canals.

We dropped down through the damaged lock with the assistance of the CRT employee. and discovered the long queue of boaters waiting to go up.  There were 21 boats, with more arriving.

looking back 2 lock 12

It appears someone has purchased an old BW bunt nosed working boat and converted to accommodation.

mod working boat

The diesel was 59.9ppl at Rugby Boats and 61ppl at Bridge 32 Supplies.  A familiar looking boater was seated in the same location we last saw him when passing this way back at the beginning of the year.

boater At least he hasn’t died of thirst.

It was a longer than usual cruising day with us finding a vacant mooring at Gayton Junction.  This mooring is rather interesting.  There is clear CRT signage advising it is 14 Days Free.  Yet some boater has placed a sign with his boat name on it along with pot plants and solar lights?????

14 day mooring

The opposite side of the canal has CRT Long Term Mooring signs.

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