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.

Friday, 18 October 2019

Cracking day Gromit

Thursday 17th October

What a wonderful autumnal start to the day, how can you not love these magical canal mornings.

And everyone who greeted us today all said the same thing, so nice to see the sun at last.

Just as we untied a Kingfisher flew past and landed on the concrete blocks by the lock. In my haste to get a photo FS nearly ended up on the offside, the bow had already been pushed away by Ian and I completely forgot FS was already in gear! Managed one photo before Ian had to grab the tiler and rescue the situation.

Bit blurry, a touch of camera shake in my excitement, shame we weren't still moored.
 And then, passing some offside moorings, another perched on the swan neck.

My excuse this time for the awful photo was operator error. I had the wrong settings on the camera so the ISO was way up in the 3500 hence the 'photo noise'

Hoo Mill lock without any queues (for a change)
 Almost into Great Hayward, in fact, approaching the bridge before the facilities, a boat called Riverdell came past. And a 'hello' from both them and us and then two different conversations started between Ian and the gentleman and the lady and myself. The lady mentioned the blog and how much she enjoyed the photos. Thank you again, it made my day. Ian, on the other hand, was talking about the Snipe satellite on their boat. He asked how long they had had it and did it still work okay. Apparently, the answer came back as yes, a good few years. Unlike ours that packed up after only 3 months! It's got to be sent back to Germany once back at Langley Mill. And they want everything as originally sent including the plate which is now firmly attached to our cabin top, (now that's going to be some challenge to remove) and all back in its original packaging. Good job we kept the carrying case although the box was long gone. Anyway, I digress. Again it was lovely to meet you both even though very briefly. Let us hope our paths will cross somewhere along the way and this time be able to have a longer natter.

After a quick stop at the facilities, the right-hander at the junction was done with ease. Not always the case as the wind can be a right pig blowing out from the Staffs and Worcs.

Onto the Staffs and Worcs canal. Anglo-Welsh with its hire boats on the right.
Tixal Wide, normally full of moored boats, just had the one. A favourite mooring of ours when and if we could find a mooring. Today would have been perfect, but it was still a bit too soon for us to stop.

First of the locks (Tixal) on Staffordshire and Worcester canal

 Had to put the brakes on FS pretty sharpish at one point when a C&RT workboat suddenly came into view. Branch removal was in progress although I think this one may have fallen due to the weight of Ivy.

Nearing Stafford Boat club I noticed work starting on the offside. It is all to do with Stafford Riverway Link Restoration has started to join the Staffs and Worcs to the town of Stafford via a lock down onto the River Sow. Click the link above to read all about it. It appears that the main sponsors are Stafford Boat Club.

Ascending Debtmore lock we stopped. Clouds were gathering, skies looked ominous and we didn't need to go much further.

From blue skies
to this
And on the journey. Autumn on the canal and the royal family.... on a locomotive?

And wildlife today,


KevinTOO said...

Great photos as always Irene, but I do wish people would learn and know which way up to hang our national flag!... :(

Ian and Irene Jameison said...

I never even noticed that Kevin. The white thicker diagonal stripe must be above the red. Xxx

Ellie said...

Hello, it was us in Rivendell ��. I always enjoy your blog, interesting and informative as well as picturesque. There seems to have been more kingfishers than ever this year everywhere we've been, but I can never get to my camera in time!
We've had our Snipe for 6 years and no problems at all ��. We always recommend it to other boaters, so I hope you get it sorted. Nice to meet you even tho it was as passing ships �� Regards from Ellie on NB Rivendell

Ian and Irene Jameison said...

Hello Ellie, Nice to put a name to a face and thankyou again for your lovely comment. We are having to send the Snipe back to Germany for repair or replace but until we get home we are having to rely on the Omni aerial. Bit of a downer when trying to get BBC to watch Strictly!

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