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.

Wednesday 29 November 2023

Too stiff to undo

 Tuesday 28th

 What a difference a day makes. Today we woke to sunshine, still cold but a far cry from the rain of yesterday. We left late, hoping other boaters would have left the moorings at Shardlow, really needed to find a space and preferably by the New Inn pub. It was where we had arranged to meet our friends.

Shardlow lock was occupied, one boat coming up. The chap did say the moorings by the pub were full but plenty of room on the visitor moorings. That will have to do then!

5.30 pm we started the walk to the New Inn. Bloody hell, it was cold! One gets too comfortable and warm inside with the stove roaring away, so the shock to the system as we stepped outside was a real wake-up call! And gosh was it dark!!!!!  Glad of the torch, a small pocket sized one we actually found by the New Inn many years ago, with a very powerful LED light, better than any of our other torches on board. Once inside the New Inn the warmth immediately hit us, lovely, and Lynda and Tony arrived shortly after.  The meal ordered and arrived piping hot and very quickly. Curry for Lynda and me, Ham egg and chips for Tony and a Stilton chicken stack for Ian. All delicious and very reasonably priced too. Highly recommendable. By 9 pm, we braved the cold to get back to FS. The moon shone brightly, hardly a cloud to be seen, yep we reckoned it would be a very cold night.

Wednesday 29th

- 1 was the reading when we got up. A thick frost covered the ground as well as FS. By the time we set off for Sawley the frost still hadn't gone. In fact, undoing the ropes became a wrestling match. We laughed, debated what to do, I managed to release the stern rope, Ian had more of a struggle with the bow rope.

Got there eventually but trying to curl them up had us giggling like school kids!

So finally got underway, sailed past the New Inn, yep the moorings were still full and headed toward the floodgates,

  It was here our laughter turned to dismay, Red lights showing both the River Soar and Trent were closed.. Bugger!!!! I checked CRT emails this morning and nothing came up. I should have looked at yesterday's emails 'cos there it was, Cranfleet flood lock was shut and boaters advised not to travel!

So now what to do? Turn around and head back, or continue in the hope the moorings by Derwent Mouth lock would have some spaces. And we got lucky having decided to continue. So we stopped just before the lock, walked down to see what the height gauge was reading and sure enough, river in the red. Only just mind, but enough to not risk trying to make it to Sawley today.

 How long we have to stay is in the lap of the Gods, shame we have the sewage works as neighbours. So far the smell isn't too bad, long may it continue.

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