An early start for us today as we had an appointment with CRT at the top of the Tinsley Flight. We’d been informed there were five boats going down with one of them being the boat that arrived yesterday. I guess they will say visiting Sheffield was a waste of time and effort. Our opinion is it was well worth the effort. The Sheffield Canal Basin is managed by CV Marina and we found the staff very friendly, accommodating and helpful. No doubt the domestic battery bank was also pleased to receive a tickle. So on reflection we would recommend taking the effort to visit Sheffield.
We were on our way before 7.30 quietly slipping past the moored boats and then the Tyler-Wilson Boatyard.
Two boats had obviously left even earlier and we were rather surprised to arrive at the top of the flight to find we were the only boat? There was time for a wander around and a cuppa.
Yet another style of paddle gear!
The locks are wider than your usual double but they are only 60ft long. We were paired up with nb Jennifer Eccles. Richard and his wife are originally from Rhodesia/Zimbabwe and later South Africa. They are now based in England and are also CC’s. The mystery of the two missing boats was solved when Derek (CRT lock keeper) informed us they had started ahead of us and were two locks down. Our well oiled locking team soon caught up with them.
There are a small number of permanent moorings and CRT facilities below the top lock.
At 57ft nb Jennifer Eccles is 18” shorter than us which enabled them to open the lower lock gate on their side. Once they had exited the lock I’d move Waiouru’s bow over and have the boat on the diagonal thus enabling us to leave the lock. This meant Jennifer Eccles led the way for almost all of the day.
As we approached Holmes Lock there appeared to be a large crowd, some of whom were wearing hi-viz vests. Some of the crowd then opened the top lock gates. Was it CRT volunteer lock keeper training?
Another of those former working boats unique to this area was moored just above Ickles Lock.
It’s river below the lock and this is where we had the issue of the bottom being close to the top when going in the opposite direction. A combination of travelling with the current and the pump out yesterday eliminated that today.
Talbot Lane Methodist Church was our first glimpse of Rotherham. Actually you can’t see much of Rotherham from the navigation and as it had started to drizzle we pressed on to the good moorings above Eastwood Lock. The weather briefly cleared later in the afternoon which meant a dry trip could be made to the Morrison’s in the adjacent Parkgate Retail Park.