About Us

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In 1977 we hired our first narrowboat from Anglo Welsh at Market Harborough.From that moment our destiny was set. In 2006 we finally purchased our own brand new 57' narrowboat which we named 'Free Spirit'. Our aim is to travel the length and breadth of all the navigable rivers and canals of the UK. This will be our story as it unfolds.

Monday, 31 August 2009

Before we left for our official moorings, Christine and Kev decided to join us at our BBQ. Luckily between Margaret and myself we managed to feed them. (Although Christine did bring burgers and rolls.) Kev went fishing and introduced me to ledgering. I'm now a big fan!

Dennis and Christine in some deep and meaning conversation.

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Our new Grandson

Christine and Kev came to visit while we were at the festival and brought Joshua for Nanny to cuddle.

Their dog Echo had nowhere to sleep so she decided to use Joshua's crib instead. I took this photo because it looked cute but we told her of after the photo was taken so she wouldn't do it again.
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Who is it?

This is Carole going mad with the secateurs. All the foliage along the river had to be trimmed so boaters could get onto the bank. Carole took this to be her mission.
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IWA Festival on the River Soar

We finally made the journey back to Redhill Marina and moored as near to the site as possible. Our actual moorings during the festival are above Radcliffe lock, but from that mooring we would have had to walk nearly a mile As the chain ferry wouldn't be running until the festival started, it was decided that we would take the first available space and stay there until we were told to move.


This is the Erewash work party fixing scaffolding to stop the poontoons from moving onto the bank in case the river flooded
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Thursday, 20 August 2009

BW at Derwent Lock

While we were moored back at Shardlow again we were informed by a BW worker that the lock had been damaged by a boater. He had not realised that his bow had slid under the rails and when the lock was filling it took the gate up with it and lifted the gate out of the cup. Consequently the next boat to use the lock found they couldn't shut the gate. BW was phoned and give them their due, they come out immediately and sent there crane boat up from Sawley to sort the problem out. Well they tried and tried and couldn't quite get the two gates to marry up. This meant that no matter what they did the leakage through the gate was pretty bad. After 5 hours they decided to get at least some of the boats through, which went pretty smoothly considering the amount of water coming in from the top gate when they emptied the lock.

This is a series of pictures showing the process.
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While we were on our travels I spied this unusual fish pond in a back garden. I thought that putting a window in to view the fish was a brilliant idea.
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I have taken this shot to prove to all who know Margaret that she does occasionally take the tiller.
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Damaged Bridge Trent and Mersey

Last year a tractor went through the bridge here. BW has had to put a temporary bridge across because the land owner still hasn't fixed the bridge.
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We arrived at Willington on Friday afternoon and did what we always did best, relaxed. Ian tried to repair our chimney only to find the inner lining had perished. Looks like more expense to purchase a new one!

Looking back along the Trent and Mersey at Willington
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Jade hoping for scraps from Dennis and Margaret.
On leaving Shardlow we picked up a boat in front of us that couldn't or wouldn't go faster then crawling pace. The journey to Stenson took us 6 hours. Unfortunately we were unable to get passed them so to pass the time I got my spinning rod out and did a bit of trawling.Posted by Picasa

Trent and Mersey Aston Lock

Margaret and Ian
Posted by PicasaSetting the lock for us and Ian being an idiot at the same time. We had finally left Shardlow and was heading for Stenson to have a meal at the Bubble Inn. When we got there it was closed until the 31st August. Sooooo :- we had another BBQ instead.

Tuesday, 11 August 2009

Garden Party

John and Shelia have a unique feature in there garden. A small steam train and tram running around the parameters of their property and onto the neighbours ground as well. We all had a fabulous time riding round and round and the wine and beer made it all the more memorable.

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River Trent

Our moorings opposite John and Sheila.

We finally left Langley Mill on Wednesday 5th August. After stopping one night at Sandiacre we headed for Trent Lock to see if the river levels had returned to normal after the rain during that week. They hadn't!! In fact the river was still rising so we stayed where we were Thursday . On Friday all looked promasing as the levels were just into the amber so we decided to go for it and head up to Sawley. Although the river was running fast, we had no problems getting into Sawley lock and moored up by the marina. Saturday morning we headed off to Shardlow where we were due to meet John and Shelia Cook for a garden party. When we got through Shardlow stop lock we were informed that there was no moorings to be had anywhere so we had to make do with a mooring full of stingers and foledge and planks to get the dogs on and off.

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