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.

Saturday, 1 June 2013

Amazing what one finds in the canal!

What a glorious day to set sail and leave Langley. By 9.30am all the jobs to prepare the boat for the off had been completed. Ariel taken down, loo emptied, electrics unplugged etc in the meantime   John and Chris winded and got into Langley Bridge lock. I left Ian to wind Free spirit while I headed off toward Eastwood lock to get it filled. I fair skipped along knowing it would be many months before we returned A fantastic feeling of freedom overcame me. Sounds a bit melodramatic but you have no idea how Ian and I have longed for this moment.

John first in and Ian winding.

Approaching Eastwood Lock
 John took the lead after Greens lock but we were baffled when he suddenly stopped right in the middle of the canal. Thinking maybe he had something round his prop we slowed right down. Then the hand signals started and he frantically kept pointing to something on our starboard side. At first I thought it was a push chair upside down until Ian said he thought it was a hose real. Sure enough as we got closer it did appear to be so. With me taking the helm Ian grabbed the pole and with a momentous effort managed to oik it out and place it on the roof. Once we got to the next lock John  said it would do very nicely for the association. I thought he just meant the reel but I was wrong, he wanted the hose as well. I did point out that the hose would be very contaminated but he felt sure that after a thorough clean with milton it would be fine. Glad I wont be the first to fill the water tank with it!

The rest of the journey went without hitch. Ian had to get his pole out again ( careful ) when a small reed island tried to impede the closing of the lock gate. 4 3/4 hours after leaving Langley we pulled onto the mooring by our bungalow. This is where we will stay for the weekend, sorting out a few problems our tenants have and then hopefully on Monday we pull pins and head for Stafford boat club and our friends wedding.

John and Chris Baylis on Nb Thornbury

Thats me in red. Proof that I occasionally do the locks

One final photo. Back in September 2012, I reported on the fire and pollution at Stanton recycling plant. Well I am pleased to report that there are 100's of healthy looking fish fry at the waters edge by our moored boat. Life has returned to the Erewash.


Nev Wells said...

We are really really pleased for you, enjoy the freedom,

Nev & Rachel Nb Percy

Kevin said...

Excellent, even the weather has changed for the better now, it looks good for the start of your excape :)
Have a great time, you both deserve it !
Kevin xx & Harry xx

James said...

So pleased that Ian is well enough to go boating. Leaving Langley Mill was a bit emotional for us, and we'd only been there a few weeks, let alone months! Enjoy resuming your cruise, there's little better than moving and exploring new places and revisiting old ones. James and Amy.

Jo (Boatwoman) said...

Woo hooo Happy Cruising to you both. So pleased you are finally free to move and enjoy the Summer.
I did leave you a private message on Facebook, but not sure if you got it about our news.

Hugsssss Jo xxxxxxxxxx

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