We left Etruria at 9am, but not before I had made an unsuccessful walk to Tesco to buy Jan’s weekly magazines. Unfortunately they still had the old magazines on display so I bought ice cream instead (well it’s comfort food).
The second lock of the day bought back memories from 2003.
This is where we met our first obnoxious boater. It was the first lock Jan had done on her own and she was taking it slowly. “Mr Puffer Fish” appeared from below the lock; scowled at us; proceeded to drop the paddles at the far end of the lock and then disappeared back to his boat. When I exited the lock he gave his moose bellow telling me “Go back to where you came from!” There always has to be one. Not that he particularly annoyed me. I was having too much fun to have him spoil our day.
You don’t go through Stoke on Trent without taking at least one bottle kiln photo.
Dolphin Boatyard on the southern side of Stoke is rather interesting. It’s certainly a diverse business trading in tackle, bait, air guns (including a rifle range), archery, boats & engines and finally, line dancing!
Jan was particularly taken with a boat on the hard standing. Shingle sides to the cabin and an AstroTurf roof.
The canal appears to pass under the Hanford Waste Recycling Centre and then runs adjacent to the huge Sainsbury’s distribution centre.
The canal then became sightly rural for a while. The Wedgwood Pottery and showroom arrived and went. We’ve visited it on two previous occasions without purchasing anything so didn’t stop today.
There is a canal side row of lovely cottages on the southern side of Barlaston which we always seem to photograph when passing by.
Almost immediately afterwards is a very attractive home with it’s own mooring. I do like the colour scheme of nb Lodestar.
A hire boat had found a lovely mooring directly below Meaford Top lock. It even had useful white mooring bollards. The crew silently watched us manoeuvre around them in the pound. Our guess was they were on Day 2 of their hire. No doubt some boater will advise them not to moor on lock landings.
We finished the day below Meaford Locks finding a good mooring on the northern outskirts of Stone. After a slightly late lunch I walked to the Morrison’s in Stone to buy Jan’s magazines. I think the payoff will be an apple strudel and ice cream dessert.