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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.

Tuesday, 4 November 2014

Water's not suposed to come from there, is it?

There was very little to report today initially until, that is, Ian very nearly brought our bungalow ceiling down! It all started when Ian went to unblock a drain at our tenants request several days ago and, having gone inside to flush water down from the loo, Ian noticed the plaster coming away from the ceiling in the living room right by the chimney stack. A quick shimmy up into the loft confirmed his fears, a slow water seepage from one of the joints by the water tank. Today, armed with the tools needed to fix the leak, we both went back to the bungalow, me so I could walk to Dolkholm lock to see what progress was being made at the stoppage and Ian to repair the pipework. First thing on the agenda was to drain the system so he could crack the joints without the worry of a flood. Leaving him to get on with it I set off for the lock. I must have been gone about an hour when, on my return, I was just in time to see water cascading down from the ceiling. I yelled at Ian (who incidentally was oblivious to the mini waterfall he had produced) to stop what he was doing and get down quick. A few choice words were then forthcoming and a super quick dash to the garage to grab a bucket. I dread to think what would have happened if I hadn't returned when I did. Thankfully only the carpet and some catalogue's got wet so I grabbed the towel from the garage, mopped up as much as I could, laid the catalogue's out in the sun and hoped they would dry off before our tenants returned. Ian had the devils own job in replacing the joints. Corrosion had well and truly set in. In fact judging by the state of them they wouldn't have lasted the winter and then we would have been in a pickle. Ceiling down, tenants to re-home, mess everywhere, it would have cost us a fortune. All I can say it was a good job we had that drain to unblock!

Work at Dolkholm lock is porogressing slowly. Well it is only day 2 of the stoppage after all. The pans and crane barge are above the lock with only one more barge to be brought up. Having chatted to one of the guys about what is to be carried out, it appears it's not just the lower and upper gates being replaced. Walls are to be repointed and the lock floor inspected for leaks etc. Hopefully I can get back next week to see how much has been done.

Misty start to the job

Last barge waiting to be brought up

Loaded with everything bar the gates, it seems.
 This chap had been spinning for Perch by Dolkholm lock. I mentioned to him about the pollution of two years ago and the fact very few fish had been caught since then. We had a conversation about the restocking of this section and agreed that only small fry had been caught. He then wondered off towards Sandiacre lock still casting his lure at every opportunity. Well as I walked back towards Sandiacre lock I was just in time to see him bringing out this good size Perch. The big grin on his face told it all. As an angler this was a fantastic sight as it means the restocking had obviously worked and fish stocks are finally recovering.

 As I was about to post this I noticed an orange glow in the sky. Took this photo across the basin first before realising the glow was even more spectacular in the other direction. Sign of good weather to come perhaps?

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