Thursday, 4 August 2016

Round and round the summit pound

Another eight o'clock start, up the last lock and onto the summit pound of the S&W. It's a contour canal up here and there was a fair bit of traffic after the first half hour, so steering was quite challenging at times. Sheila earned her keep by sitting in the bow, doing her crochet and warning me of approaching boats.

There was a convoy of six that had appeared to have set out at the same time from Hatherton which made life especially interesting. One thing, please people, if you are following another boat under these circs along a windy canal with a lot of blind bridgeholes, DON'T TAILGATE! It makes it very awkward if, having held back for one boat at the bridge, balancing the boat neatly with just a smidgeon of forward way on it, you set out for the hole only to have to pull back again because another bow has appeared. It's only good manners to go turn and turn about through the obstruction.


It all stopped me from pondering too deeply about the status of those signs at the Four Ashes Chemical Works forbidding stopping or mooring there. They appeared just a couple of years ago. The works have been there for decades without needing them and they don't carry the CRT logo, so I suspect they are completely non-binding. The fact that they refer to 200 meters, rather than "metres", makes me suspect our American cousins have taken over the company, done a risk assessment and shoved up these signs willy-nilly.

Not that you'd want to stop there anyway, of course, but it's still irritating when big business starts throwing its weight about like that. Apparently, there's a proposal to build another rail-freight terminal on part of the site, like the one at Daventry.

We arrived at Coven at half ten to find loads of room to moor. After a coffee break, I trogged into the village to shop, visiting the Co-op and the butchers which was open for once. Haven't tried cooking any of the meat yet, but will report in due course.

Sheila, meanwhile, had a snoop round the pub and went on to look at the 3 Hammers Golf Club Bistro. After Greygal's comment yesterday, we were feeling a bit cautious and indeed the Fox and Anchor looks very scruffy and run down. The bistro, on the other hand, looks a bit upmarket for us boaters, so it's going to be spaghetti carbonara on board tonight after all.

There's been a possible sighting of the stolen boat at Cholmondeston Lock on the Middlewich Arm, so we'll be keeping an eye out for it for the next few days in case a) it was the right boat and b) it turned south at Barbridge. Unfortunately, the report was a couple of days old by the time it came through, so may not be very useful.



Adam said...

The other thing that I think is good manners is warning opposite direction boats if you know there's another one behind you -- especially at a bridge or a sharp corner.

Bruce in Sanity said...

Very true. To be fair, the leading boat did just that, which helped, but it still left me juggling around and with a tricky line through the bridge when I finally got there.