Tuesday, 9 May 2017

Round the bend at Hillmorton

We'd estimated two to two and a half hours from Braunston to below Hillmorton, which proved to be a bit of an underestimate, it being just over three in the end. It was Sheila's turn to steer in rather dreary conditions – a bit less wind than yesterday, but what there was was still bitingly cold. I spent much of the time in the cabin, keeping a forward lookout through the bow doors except when blind bridge holes occurred. I was also getting on with various indoor jobs as we went along.

I don't think there were quite as many boats tied to the towpath but this was more than made up for by the Barby Straight moorings, of course. The new Dunchurch marina is progressing apace – it's going to be huge. The impact on congestion on these waterways will be phenomenal, I fear, and I can well understand local concerns.

Eventually we arrived at the top of the paired Hillmorton locks. The ones on the left were all with us and so I had an easy job of it as lockwheeler. It's a pleasure to work such easy locks after our efforts on the broad locks into and out of the Avon valley. Tied at the top was Caxton and our friends George and Sue emerged for a chat whilst we were locking down. We haven't seen them for a while, so it was good to catch up.

Sounds like you'll have time for much more boating, now, George!

A volocky was helping out at the bottom pair. He was giving some instruction to a first time hiring crew as we got there. If I make an effort, I can still recall just what it was like that first time out, how much there is to learn and to remember. Mind you, we first worked down these locks in 1976 on our second ever hire boat holiday, a Barney Boat out of Braunston, so it's a while ago now.

As usual, we've carried on past the official visitor moorings to tie on the much better Armco just round the first bend. We walked back after lunch to dump rubbish and recycling. CRT's policy on recycling is amazingly inconsistent. At many places there are dedicated skips for mixed dry stuff and wheelie bins for glass. At others, there are just the wheelie bins and at places like Hillmorton, nothing at all. Oh, except for a notice advising of local recycling facilities, the nearest of which in this case was half a mile away.

I'm afraid the carefully separated recycling went in the general skip. Back at the boat, I improved the shining hour by giving the loo a good cleaning with diluted phosphoric acid to clean the scale off from under the rim. See, I haven't mentioned toilets for ages... ;)

Tomorrow, we'll do a short run to Brownsover, hopefully, though George and Sue tell us that there's a lot of pressure on the moorings there, as the ones through the road bridge are currently out of action whilst CRT does some maintenance work on them. If the worst comes to the worst, we'll carry on to Newbold, but we'd rather not go so far if we can avoid it. It's not the extra distance tomorrow, it's the further travelling needed to find a 70 foot winding hole the next day.



Narrowboat Caxton said...

Good to see the two of you today, looking forward to a proper catch up soon. George & Sue

Mike Todd said...

I suspect that some of the inconsistency regarding rubbish disposal (apart from the variations between regional managers) lies in the availability of companies to collect. Since it is trade waste there is no-one with an obligation to collect and it comes down to whether the location is accessible with the ever-larger vehicles they seem to use as well as there being enough other collections in the area to justify an acceptable charge. Still, it is disappointing to find no segregation when one is so used to it at home. Mind you, the differences between local authorities about what and how they recycle and collect is amazing!

Bruce in Sanity said...

I expect that's right, Mike. I'm sorry to report that the excellent general waste and recycling bins have completely disappeared from the car park here at Newbold. That can't be about access, they were right at the side of the car parking area. There isn't even a CRT sign indicating the nearest rubbish or recycling points.