We inch ever nearer to our home base. Still only doing 3 or so hours a day. We left All Oaks Wood quite early and chugged on to Hilmorton visitor moorings. Met up with Barry (aka Baz the fish) for lunch at the Bell and then pushed on the next day, Friday to the outskirts of Braunston at Willoughby. Only 2 miles from what one might call the centre of the canal network but a very quiet and rural spot. Thankfully a breeze is blowing today so very hot but cooling too.
Here’s one for Stephen & Lucia – a bridge 42!!
Hilmorton VM – somewhat spoilt now by a huge house building programme that spreads out along the side of the canal all the way from Rugby to Hilmorton – see the big yellow truck behind the boat. Bulldozing all day – not a nice place to stop anymore.
Up to The Bell Inn on Hilmorton Road – just next to our dog’s vets, doesn’t look too much from the road – a big, white 70’s art-deco front-ish place, you’d think only good for lager & sports TV but it is surprisingly nice. A small lounge bar, a big restaurant and best of all, a huge garden with a fish pond. Here’s Barry replenishing the beer stock! Lunches were good too – £5 for 1 course, £7 for 2 and £9 for 3. Good grub it was too. Beer not so with Sharp’s & St Austell fare (it is a Heineken pub). Bit of a trek from the canal in the heat (a mile or so uphill?) but worth it and all downhill going back.
Next day. Off at 0830 and up through the 3 double locks. Vince the regular volunteer was on hand to help. Cheers.
Quite speedily through these locks – the busiest on the whole canal network but not today. We noticed the unusual paddle gear, no ratchet but a stopper.
Oh, look, another Blue Moon! How often do you see these?
Round we go on a big southerly loop, past Barby marina and four alpacas
Lots of other more native wildlife
Past the new marina at Onley, Dunchurch Pools.
Looks fairly full of boats – some widebeams too.
And finally, just beyond bridge 87, we stop. Only a 30 minute walk into Braunston but with no noise from builders, cars, trains or planes . . . it’ll do us.
Just fields and a whole flotilla of boats passing by!