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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.

Sunday, 8 November 2015

The inevitable shopping trolley and bikes at bottom of Newark Town Lock

Boredom had set in big time. Weather hadn't helped with all the rain curtailing my walks and so daytime TV was starting to become my friend. But not today though.......yipeee....... because Ian made the suggestion of going to Newark to see C&RT's open day at Town Lock on the River Trent.  I didnt need asking twice so, despite the rain, we set off this morning and within the hour, had arrived at Newark. We had given Dennis and Margaret (Nb Icing) a ring to see if they could join us but only Margaret could make it as Dennis was away doing a spot of DIY for daughter Gillian. Margaret was coming from Sleaford and we were coming from Nottingham and somehow the two cars manged to pull into the car park at the same time. Quite uncanny!!! Anyway the weather had improved enough for us to all head towards Town Lock and, after a route march through the town, eventually found the entrance.

Looking toward the lock from downstream

First to greet us at the bridge was none other the Sean McGinley, C&RT's East Midlands regional manager. He manages over 300km of waterway, a position he has held since 2009. After a brief natter he pointed us in the direction of the the dry dock. Said we should go have a look and by 'eck I'm glad we did 'cause it was HUGE!!. Could fit a few narrowboats for blacking in there, I can tell you!

Would you believe the tug on the left was over 60 years old! The maintenance boat on the right is a youngster, just 30
Once at the lock site we chatted to C&RT bod's and found out that not only was the lock gates being re-planked but the hydraulic gear repaired as the support frames had gone rotten and needed replacing.

A very important job. Sweeping the incoming water towards the pump.

Shopping trolley, bike, lump hammer and by the right side corner....a windlass. Quick get the sea magnet out!!!!

 The old hydraulic support frames being removed..

Gate paddles from the top gates
Looking toward the top gates

A very interesting few hours spent wandering round and chatting and even the rain held off. Then it was lunch at the Castle Barge before we departed to our separate destinations. Just got back to FS when the rain started and the wind picked up. The Gods must have been smiling on us today, me thinks. Now if only I had plans for tomorrow. Oh yes....... I know......back to watching daytime TV again!


Pip and Mick said...

Hello Irene
We also went to Town Lock today and I have an almost identical photo of the bikes, hammer and windlass in the lock. Suspect you were there earlier than us as we didn't see the chaps replanking the bottom gate.
Hope cabin fever doesn't set in too much.

Pip NB Lillyanne

Ian and Irene Jameison said...

Hi Pip and Mick,
We arrived about 10.30ish and took nearly 30 minutes from the car park to find our way to the bridge. You were so right in the lack of signage! Shame we missed you but I'm sure there will be a next time. Xxx

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