It was on this cold, windy and wet morning that we said farewell to Sandiacre (for the next week anyway) and headed off in the direction of Trent Lock. Sean (C&RT) had already arrived (yes....like 8.30am climbing over the boats to get to the workboat) and any thoughts of more sleep was forgotten as the workboat roared into life and set off for the lock. With all of us awake we dressed hurriedly and helped them and the barge through the lock. This was day 2 of the cleanup, picking up along the stretch to Trent Lock, and most of the volunteers were to meet at Sandiacre. Our cars were nearly blocked in by the arriving masses but Ian and Dennis had the hindsight to move both cars over the canal bridge just in time. After all the volunteers were on there way, we did the car shuffle to Trent lock and by 11ish, and during a lull in the torrential rain to a mizzle, we were off.
|Dennis backing Icing away from us|
Once clear of the lock we battled our way towards Dockholme Lock. Very surprised to meet another boat on their way up. So few boats travel the Erewash that we get somewhat complacent and assume no other boats will be met. Here I had a real job getting off the side. What with the wind pushing me against the bank and the lack of dredging I got well and truly stuck. Ian had already left the boat and was setting the lock with Margaret. Dennis was on the lock landing with Icing so it left me to get myself sorted. Lots of throttle forward and back managed to free myself just as the lock gates opened.
The sun came out as we departed which made for a much nicer cruise.
|Lovely litter free towpath.|
|Ian at Long Eaton Lock|
Now we fully expected every lock to be against us seeing as the cleanup mob was in front but didn't expect to have to close the bottom gates at Long Eaton. There was enough bods to close after them and, as I drew level with C&RT's workboat during their lunch break, (and with a grin on my face), asked what they were playing at. Sean winked and said it was about time we did some work (cheeky bu**er)
|Radcliffe power station cooling towers at Trent Lock.|
Getting moored up was a doodle. Not a single boat on the visitor moorings and the wind pushing us gently into the side. Only bow thrusters could have done as well! Within an hour the barge and pusher arrived making for Sawley. Got these last few photos before they disappeared. Quite a decent haul for the Erewash!
Tonight Christine, Kev, Josh and Thomas pay us a visit. I'm hoping for a lot of birthday cards 'cause all our mail goes to Christine. Might be a day late but still looking forward to opening them. Tomorrow is a day of chillin in readiness for all the hard work to start on Monday. It's our annual blacking event, gosh is it really only a year since it was last done?
Must just show you all the cake Margaret made for my birthday. It's called a Jiffy cake and is absolutely delicious.