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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.

Wednesday, 28 October 2015

Merlin move, Shropshire Union, day 1

Today was the day we choose to move Merlin from Bunbury to Great Hayward. Merlin's our other narrowboat, a 62ft cruiser stern, run by Anglo Welsh in their hire fleet. So hearing the rain lashing down on FS first thing we thought we had made the wrong decision to start the move today. Mind you, this is a bit of a rush move to get Merlin for a repaint to Great Hayward before they stoppages started on the 2nd November. By the time we reached Bunbury around 10.30ish the rain had turned to drizzle and we even had a glimpse of something brighter on the horizon. After the initial handover by Frank we left to ascend Bunbury staircase lock before midday, helped up by a lovely volunteer and a number of gongoozlers.

We love this canal with it's fabulous views and, at this time of year, the stunning colours of Autumn.

We passed the Llangollen canal at Hurleston Junction, home to Merlin at the start of her hire life. She was based at Trevor for nearly 9 years before being moved to Bunbury. Consequently we know and love this canal very well.

Passing Hurleston Junction

Hurleston Flight Llangollen canal

Strange to see Ian on a cruiser stern.

Lovely wooden horse sculpture at Nantwich

Nantwich aqueduct railings being repainted

Bottom lock at Hack Green

Hack Green top Lock
We didn't make it as far as we would have liked owing to the late start but we did manage to ascend the two locks at Hack Green before stopping around 3.30pm. Destination today should have been at the bottom of the Audlem flight, another 2 miles away, so a longish day will have to be put in tomorrow to get back on track.

9.4 miles and 4 locks

And on route today,

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