Summer Cruise#2 – Day 9


Well, the rain stopped. The sun peeped out but the wind spoke softly – time to move.

0820 we slipped our moorings and pootled up to that quaint Kingswood Junction.

Dispose of rubbish. And begin the first of nineteen locks – yes, almost as many as Monday but these be ickle ones.

No hydraulics but a couple of winds and the paddles are up. It is a very old canal (or it seems it) and one of the first to be restored – lots of plaques on the wall in the basin. A CRT volunteer turned up too – helping us to set the locks above. And despite the daunting aspect of so many locks, it all went swimmingly. After these Lapworth locks there are no more until we’re into Birmingham.

We stopped at bridge 20, for a visit to the famous Wedge’s bakery (loaf, Aberdeen Angus steak & onions sarnie (hot), pulled pork & stuffing & apple sauce (hot), a custard slice (huge), a chocolate eclair (also huge), a 8 inch lump of black pudding, two lamb samosas and a lump of Cropwell Bishop Stilton!! Hmm, just a wee stock up then??). No pictures of these as these were set upon by the ravenous crew and consumed with alacrity.

A short hop from here and we get to our final mooring, just past the Blue Bell Cider House (no really, not another pub Steve??)

Here’s the first lock – with the original bridge – note the gap, to allow the horse-drawn barge to keep the rope connected.

And Steve finds the B&W setting on his camera for some “arty” heritage shots:

Or sometimes better in colour?

With some help from the volly (Pat)

He showed me how to open the two bottom gates on your own – I sort of get it:

More art?

This looks like a contender for photo of the day – maybe a new desktop piccie?

And what happens when two boats need to pass?

Nearing the top – another of those bridges . . .

And the last of the monochrome artworks . . . vote now!

Phew! Got to the top and on for another hour but no more locks . .

Final stop (after the pit stop at Wedge’s !) Spot the tired Toby?

Conveniently near the Blue Bell Cider House!

Tomorrow – Birmingham!