Lived onboard Hadar

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Sunday, July 31, 2011

Stourport to Wilden Pool

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A short journey this morning, we are now moored between Bullock’s Lane bridge No.9 and Oldington bridge No.10, between Stourport and Kidderminster, it took all of an hour to get here. The sun is shining brightly, so some topping up of the suntan is called for after lunch. No TV signal though so we won’t be watching the Grand Prix :(

Bullocks Lane, Wilden

Keith.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Moved but Still in Upper Basin Stourport

 

Stourport

We moved to the next mooring down from this one in the photo this morning, where we moored on our journey down through Stourport. It became vacant this morning, and as Jo wanted to do a lot of washing in the washing machine it was convenient to move here and use the shoreline for a while. Also it stops our bow being clobbered by boats entering and leaving the sanitary station. Happy Days!

Keith.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Worcester to Stourport

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Stourport


A cool but bright start to the morning, but it definitely warmed up by the time we arrived at Stourport. Unfortunately there were no moorings out on the river so we headed for the narrow locks. One boat was already queueing to go up, so I had to pull alongside two boats breasted on the moorings. Eventually I was able to enter the lock and we arrived in the upper basin, and moored up next to the sanitary station. After cheeseburgers in rolls, we wandered around the town. Upon our return, Lesley off of nb Caxton called to see us, having heard our engine. Their new boat has started to be built, and they are mooring here in the basin whilst it is being built.


Keith.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Upton-upon-Severn to Worcester.

 

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This mornings trip was definitely more like summer to start with, then the clouds returned, but by the time we arrived at Worcester it is still at least quite warm. We have moored at the southern end of Worcester Racecourse this time in this side of the footbridge in the photo and the rowing club, which is just out of shot to the left. We are closer to the city, so we will be walking into the city this afternoon after lunch for another explore.

Worcester

We managed to get a different view of the cathedral this afternoon, from the riverbank walk.

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Down along the riverbank was a gateway and in the wall next to the gate were all these flood marks over the years.

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We heard lots of cheering from the other side of the river so we had to investigate, by crossing over the river at the bridge to discover the Worcestershire County Cricket ground, where they were playing Somerset, and are 367-3 at 8:30pm. We walked back to the boat on the other side of the river and Jo took this photo of Hadar as we crossed the new footbridge.

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As we were walking back from the cricket ground we decided that we had to draw up a list of things we have to do, cricket match, rugby match, football match, grey hound racing, speedway and horse racing so far. Once back at the boat I looked up Worcester Racecourse to discover there was racing on tonight. After dinner we strolled over to the course to watch some of the racing.

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A very pleasant way to pass an evening.

Keith.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Great day at Upton-upon-Severn

 

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A day of sunshine and warmth at last. We started off with a walk around the town again, visiting the shops that were closed yesterday, especially the 2 charity shops. After lunch we visited the museum, which was crammed packed with lots of artefacts, and curios.

We returned to the boat and joined Brian of nb Kyle and Lorraine and Fred of NB Sarah on the pontoon between their 2 boats. This resulted in us heading for “Ye Olde Anchor Inn”, which we sat outside and enjoyed a couple of pints and some great banter. The perfect end to a perfect day.

 

Upton on Severn 2

Keith.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Yew Tree Inn to Upton-upon-Severn

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Upton on Severn

The sun has shone for most of the morning, makes a nice change after the last week. We were heading for Worcester today as I thought there would be no moorings available at Upton, but when we got here there was room on the pontoons for us, so we pulled in and moored up. Time to explore Upton this afternoon.

Keith.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Gloucester to the Yew Tree Inn, Chacely Stock

 

Yew Tree Chacely Stock

 

An earlyish start this morning with the first locking down from Gloucester Docks at 8:45am. We were in company with 2 other narrowboats in the lock, and we slid in between the 2 of them. I let them leave the lock before me, as I thought they would be faster, Mystic Lady was, but Cartonia wasn’t and I had to hold back until we cleared the East Channel at Upper Parting, and the river widened. We have moored at the Yew Tree at Chacely Stock, As I didn’t want to chance going too far and not being able to get a mooring. At least the sun is out today, a few black clouds have passed over but fortunately they did just that, pass over, without emptying upon us.

Keith.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Saul Junction to Gloucester Docks

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Gloucester 4

It did try to rain, but was hardly worth worrying about. We stopped at the Sainburys moorings and shopped. Then we carried on into Gloucester Docks to look for a mooring. There was room in the barge arm opposite the Waterways Museum, so we pulled in and moored up. Just having lunch before deciding what to do for the rest of the day.

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This is Hadar moored in the barge arm outside the Waterways Museum.

Keith.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Stroudwater Canal (The Other Bit)

 

This morning we set off with packed lunches, cameras, etc. and headed up the other part of the Stroudwater Canal, which is under restoration towards Stroud itself. The first section up to Whitminster road bridge is still in use as lineside moorings and access to Saul Marina. From the bridge the canal towpath is overgrown, but a footpath cuts the corner and re-joins the canal at Whitminster lock.

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Here at the l0ck we noticed these lock gates dated 1996. It seemed strange to us that they had been fitted then and basically left here to rot, especially as they are not actually serving and practical purpose, being that they are left open and just a couple of yards beyond them the canal is dammed off. From this point the canal has been removed as part of a field, but the towpath still runs alongside the River Frome, and at the lock the canal will be rerouted into the river for the next section. The canal ran parallel to the river for a short distance before it crossed it, at the same level. This next photo was taken from the bridge which crosses the river just upstream from the original junction, and this is the River Frome.

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From here you can follow the canal again until this bridge.

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This looks very out of place where it is. We carried along the towpath until we arrived at the A38. Here looked like there could have been a wharf which is very close to the village of Frombridge. From the A38 the canal disappears until after the M5. As our map didn’t extend any further than this point we decided to give on on tracing the canal any further, especially as one footpath we tried in the general direction, came to a field with an electric fence which we didn’t fancy crossing, and although it was marked as a footpath from the road, there was no stile of gate giving further access.

We decided to retrace out footsteps to the bridge where we sat under a huge oak tree and had lunch. After lunch we carried on and met a couple walking their 2 dogs near Whitminster lock and we got chatting to them. They have a boat in the marina, so I asked about the canal from this point and they explained that it did originally border the field, but as could be seen the farmers over many years had ploughed away all but the towpath which now runs alongside the river, and they confirmed that the restoration will in fact take the river from this point to the original crossing junction.

We took a slight detour on our way back and visited Whitminster church. It has an unusual double tower.

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Keith.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Golden Age of Canals to be Rebroadcasted

 

Golden Age of Canals

 

Jo has just received an e-mail from Available Light Productions Ltd, the TV company who filmed us last year, to tell her that the program "The Golden Age of Canals" is being televised again this time on BBC 2 on this coming Friday, 22nd July at 9pm after it got a record breaking audience on BBC4.

Keith.

Framilode & Saul Churches

We have just had a lovely walk from Saul junction following the abandoned Stroudwater canal from Saul Junction down to the River Severn. as we approached Framilode the footpath became what was originally the towpath for the abandoned canal, which is surprisingly very much in water. Even more surprising was when the footpath came to the Ship Inn which backs onto the footpath and the old canal.

Ship Inn Framinlode

Further along the footpath/towpath we came across this row of cottages which from the stone wall at the canals edge would have probably been Framilode Wharf.

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At the River we came across Framilode Church which has this amazing highly decorated interior to the roof.

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We walked back along the road from Framilode to the village of Saul where we came across the church with some unusual aspects. All the paths from the gates to the church are grassed, which we have never seen before, and the entrance porch was this very pretty wooden one.

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It has recently been stripped of many years of paint and looked amazing in it’s natural state. We have never seen a wooden entrance before. We know all about this because as we arrived an elderly lady appeared and invited us to look inside. She lived just opposite and had always lived in the village, and was married in this church. She told us about the porch. Apparently the work had been undertaken by a local man, and it had taken him along time to strip it back to natural wood, but it was well worth it. Just a covering of oil and it looked like new.

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We finished our trip with lunch and a beer at The Stables cafe at Sandford Bridge. We had started sitting out on the balcony, until our lunch arrived and it started to rain, so we had to scurry inside.

Before signing off I would like to give a mention to Dick and Sue who came to see us today. Dick and Sue who very kindly read our blog and have their own boat, thought they would come and find us as they were close by. It is always lovely to meet people who take the time to read ours and others blogs.

Keith.

Frampton to Saul Junction

 

Saul Junction

 

A short cruise this morning to Saul Junction, where we will be doing some exploring hopefully, as it looks like a place to explore with the old canal down to the River Severn, and the Stroudwater canal which is under restoration.

 

Keith.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Slimbridge to Frampton on Severn

 

Frampton on Severn

A short journey this morning from Slimbridge to Frampton on Severn. We moored up before Fretherne swing bridge and walked into the village and along the half mile long village green.

The Cadbury's factory near Fretherne Bridge was established in 1916. Ground cocoa beans and sugar were blended with milk collected from local farms, and the mixture was baked to form chocolate crumb. This was taken by narrow boat to Bournville for final processing. I assume the cocoa beans and sugar arrived by ship at Sharpness, and were either delivered directly to the factory, or transferred into barges at Sharpness for shipment to the Frampton Factory.

As throughput increased, the huge concrete silo was needed to provide additional storage for the crumb. The factory closed in 1983, but the wharf area is now a small industrial estate.

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Keith.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Hadar under Torpedo Attack!


Swordfish


Whilst we were visiting the Wildfowl & Wetland Trust on Friday this Fairey Swordfish Mk.II of the Royal Navy Historic Flight passed over on it's way to the Royal International Air Tatoo at Fairford this weekend. I wonder if the torpedo strung underneath it is a real one? Even I am impressed with the photo capturing the prop stationary without any blurring.


You can find out further info about the visiting aircraft at the Air Tattoo Website.


Keith.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Slimbridge Wildfowl & Wetland Trust

 

Slimbridge

We had a great day at the Wildfowl & Wetland Trust. Between us we took many photos and Jo has uploaded just some of them, 56 actually,  to an album on her facebook page, which you can view by clicking on the photo above. Easier than having to post them all again here!

Thank goodness it didn’t rain like it has today.

Keith.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Sharpness to Patches Bridge

 

Patches Bridge

Sunshine at last, very little wind at last. A short trip today to Patches Bridge, which is near Shepherd’s Patch. We will be spending the weekend here. Tomorrow we will be visiting the Slimbridge Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust, which is not far from the bridge, which is the main road access to the trust. We have been looking forward to visiting the trust ever since we knew we were heading this way.

Keith.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Hadar Winding in Droitwich

 

Hadar Winding

We have just been sent this excellent photo of Hadar winding in Vines Park, Droitwich, during the boat parade at the reopening festival. It was taken from Dodderhill Church tower. Many thanks to Chris on Lazerblue who took the photo and Adrian Smith for forwarding it onto us.

Keith.

The Purton Barge Graveyard

 

This morning Jo and I set off for a walk along the towpath to Purton to find the barge graveyard, which we soon did. It is quite amazing seeing the rotting hulks. There is a footpath that wends it way amongst them, with plaques at each one name the boat, when it was built and by whom, and when it was abandoned there. They were dumped here to form a protective wall against the river from eroding the banks of the ship canal. There is a website which describes all about them.

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The following picture taken from one of the concrete barges and is looking down the river towards Sharpness, and the wall jutting out from the left is the old arm of the canal, which is where we walked yesterday.

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This picture is of the 2 tanker barges which collided and crashed into the railway bridge in 1960, the resultant explosion from the ruptured gas pipe in the bridge,which was ignited by the damaged electricity cables, also ignited the petrol in one of the tankers. 5 of the 8 crew lost their lives. The bridge was dismantled in 1967 and parts of it were sold to Chile, where it is now. There is also a description about this accident on the same website as the barge graveyard.

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This is inside the small church at Purton. The organ on the right hand side is fairly new, but I noticed that the tallest pipe in the centre had to be chamfered to fit against the roof! Someone didn’t get the measurements right.

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We took a packed lunch with us and on our return trip we stopped off on one of the concrete barges and had a picnic lunch watching the birdlife in the estuary.

Keith.

Little Egret

 

Little Egret

This was the Little Egret we spotted yesterday searching for food in the Severn estuary. This is only the 2nd one that Jo has ever seen, it is my 1st.

Keith.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Sharpness Docks

 

Today we walked to Sharpness Docks, via the riverside path which brought us out near the dry docks where this fishing boat and tug were in for work on them, don’t fancy having to pressure wash either of them!

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The ship in the next 2 photos, “Echion”, was unloading fertiliser, hence the red flag being flown alongside the red ensign, signifying carrying explosive materials, which fertiliser can be. She is flying the national flag for Liberia.

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This last photo is a general view of the docks taken from the Dockers Club, where we had a nice lunch and a pint of Worthington’s Cask Ale, which was their guest ale.

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Keith.