Navigation by WebRing.

Sunday, 23 December 2012

Waveney Valley Floods Dec 2012

Had a run round in the TR7 today to look at the flooded Waveney Valley after the heavy rain of the last few days. No houses at threat, just a few roads, the road to Wingfield near the gravel pits

Wingfield Road.

I then headed for Needham and the Mill, the first part of Mill Lane was flooded, again the TR7 got through, then by the Mill the road was again flooded, but it had a clear flow of water on it, I saw a 4 x 4 come through and it was halfway up his wheels so chickened out of this one.
Mill Lane, Needham, easily got through this.

But did not chance this at the other side of the Mill.

I then turned round and made for Mendham, the whole of the valley meadows was under water here.
Looking up towards Needham.

Near Mendham Bridge.

I then headed for Homersfield but I was baulked again by a flooded road, looking at this flood it was quite deep and not worth chancing.
Flooded Homersfield Road

Looking down the Waveney Valley to Homersfield.

I called it a day then and returned to Harleston, at least the wheelarched are now free of mud.

Sunday, 16 December 2012

Go get a tree she says.

Now we already have a Christmas tree, and a cat that takes great interest in it.
Cat and Tree in Lounge

So we normally have a large tree in the lounge and a smaller one in the dining room, usually a real one, but this year Gill wanted a fake one to save having pine needles everywhere, so on her way to Norwich for Christmas Shopping today she popped into Cherry Lane to view some, then texted me to say can I go get it. Now it been a nice day I thought I would take the TR7 and have a blat through the lanes. After all a 5ft tree would only be in a small box.
Nice drive to Cherry Lane, then went looking for the 5ft tree with cones Gill asked me to get, what she had forgotten to tell me was the display model was the last in the garden centre and she wanted it without fail!!!
As the shop was heaving with customers, they could not spare anyone to dismantle it, then the box was missing, I did get a discount for this, and it was carried out to the car in one piece for me to try to disassemble.
It did not come apart easily, the result been.

Loads of room left for gear changing and looking left, not!

Thursday, 6 December 2012

Lotus F1 Narrowboat

Just spotted an unusual item on the Lotus F1 Website, seems one of their staff has renovated a narrowboat, called NB Nemisis, and painted it out in Lotus F1 Teams colours. The boat was seen on George Clarkes Amazing Spaces on Channel 4. It looks like it is moored at High Line Yachting, Iver.
Lets just hope Romain Grosjean doesn't take it out or there will be a few bumps with other narrowboats, and if Kimi takes it out, going on his Sao Paulo exploits he had better have a map.

Here's the link to the Lotus F1 Website, http://www.lotusf1team.com/F1-at-4-Knots.html
Also a link to Narrowboat Nemisis Blog, which looks like an incomplete blog.

The feature on George Clarke's Amazing spaces can be seen on 4 on demand http://www.channel4.com/programmes/george-clarkes-amazing-spaces/4od

NB Nemesis

Saturday, 13 October 2012

Friday - Earlswood to Alvechurch

After heavy rain overnight a better weather day was promised for Friday, it was a little cool when we set of from Earlswood, I needed my woolly hat for the first time.
We first headed past Lady Lane wharf towards the modern suburb of Dickens Heath. The architecture comes as a bit of a shock, something you would expect in central Birmingham but you come round a corner with rural scenes.
Rural scenes just yards from Dickens Heath.

to modern architecture like this.
Dickens Heath.

After Dickens Heath we motored along, with the sun now out we passed Shirley lift bridge where we held up traffic for a while as the key jammed in the electric controls for the lift bridge, the control panel cycling through the routine 2 or 3 times with the stop lights flashing and barriers going up and down.
The next section is fairly featureless through the back gardens of the Birmingham suburbs up to Brandwood Tunnel.
Brandwood Tunnel.

We then passed through the old guillotine lock at Kings Norton and rejoined the Birmingham and Worcester Canal at Kings Norton Junction and are on the home straight to the boatyard.
Kings Norton Guillotine Lock

Dad cutting the corner (again) at Kings Norton Junction.

Next up was the long Wast Hill Tunnel where we passed a couple of boats inside, a fair bit of water dripping from the roof and ventilation shafts in the tunnel.
Leaving Wast Hill Tunnel with a wet roof.

We moored at Hopwood for lunch, receiving a hungry visitor.
Waiting for bread.

Leaving Hopwood, nice Stowe Hill boat moored outside the pub.

Leaves beginning to gather in the cuttings near Bittel Reservoir.

Getting near journeys end we had a short sharp burst of heavy rain before we pass some nice houses and moorings and then reach Alvechurch Marina.
Approaching Alvechurch after the rain.

A good, enjoyable week, we used 76 Locks, 6 Lift bridges, 4 tunnels, and travelled 56 miles and used 57 litres of diesel.
Saturday morning was spent cleaning and servicing the boat for the next owners before dad left for York by train and we headed back to Norfolk in the car.

Thursday, 11 October 2012

Thursday - Kingswood Junction to Earlswood

Rain was threatened for today, so we hoped it would be later giving us time to complete Lapworth locks. We reversed from our Grand Union mooring to the junction and headed for Lock 20 set at an angle at Kingswood Junction.
Back to Kingswood from the Grand Union.
Old Working Boat at Kingswood Junction.

Lock 20 - Kingswood Junction.

Lapworth Locks, still no rain.

We made it to Lock 3 of the Lapworth flight before the rain set in for a while. We moored for lunch after the top lock and let the rain clear before proceeding on to Hockley Heath for a few provisions.

Ryland McLaren Showroom.

Took the time to order my new McLaren MP4 12C at Ryland McLaren near the wharf. (I wish, they would not even let me in the showroom with my muddy boots and jeans)

At Hockley Heath we saw the only CaRT representation seen all week on the Stratford Canal, CaRT employees and contractors totally rebuilding the Bridge across the truncated wharf arm. Now we saw all the yellow aware tapes at faulty Locks up and down the Stratford with no sign of remedial work for the easy fixed probllems, yet they can spend a fortune rebuilding a towpath bridge over a disused arm. I hope they have a grant from someone for this! Surely lock safety should take precedence over towpath use by a few local residents walking their dogs.

After Hockley Heath we moved on to moor at Earlswood, just in time as the heavy rain came in.

Wednesday - Wilmcote to Kingswood Junction

Wednesday was a fine and dry day with a few hints of sunshine. We set of from Wilmcote happily before the Hotel Boats set off. Have been stuck behind hotel boats before and they are painfully slow with 2 boats to lock through, one unpowered and can add hours to a journey.
It was pretty busy on the Preston Bagot locks with boats coming down.
Busy at Preston Bagot bottom lock.

Midway up the flight.

Gill negotiating one of the narrow Split Bridges.

Ducks enjoying a nibble at the weed in a bywash.

At Kingswood Junction we took a right and moored for the night on the Grand Union.

Turning into the Grand Union link at Kingswood Junction

Through the Link

Left turn on to the Grand Union to moor on the full visitor moorings.

Not a bad day for a return journey which can sometimes be a drag. The promised rain did not materialise and it was relatively warm.

Wednesday, 10 October 2012

Tuesday - Lowsonford to Wilmclote

Another nice day on the Stratford Canal. After a cooked breakfast (the only time I get the full Monty is on the boat) we set of down the locks towards Preston Bagot. Not a very busy day on the cut, the few boats that where about are mainly hire boats.
Entering the secluded lock 33.

Crossing the diminutive Bucket Lock Aquaduct.

Reflections at Preston Bagot Lock 37 cottage.

Lock 37 Lock Cottage.

Flowery boat - how do they see to steer!

We where briefly held up at Wooton Wawen whilst a boat was serviced, blocking the aquaduct.
We carried on across Wooten Wawen and Edstone Aquaducts to moor for lunch at Wilmcote.
Leaving Edstone Aquaduct

After lunch we decided to catch the train down to Stratford where we would have a quick look round before returning to Wilmcote for dinner.

Wilmcote station, ex Great Western with typical GWR footbridge.

Couple of boats coming into a quiet Bancroft Basin from the
sluggish looking River Avon.

When we got back to the boat we found a couple of Hotel Boats moored behind, will need to get away in the morning before these or it will be a slow climb up the locks.
Bywater Hotel Boats moored behind us, we will reverse to the winding
hole behind the hotel boats tommorow to turn round.

Tuesday, 9 October 2012

Monday - Hockley Heath to Lowsonford

Monday was not the weather we hoped for, it dawned with an overcast sky and promised rain for later.
We headed for Lapworth Locks in slight drizzle.
Gill operating Hockley Heath drawbridge.

Waiting for lock 8.

Only saw one boat on the move up Lapworth Locks, of course we met this at the awkward corner between lock 7 and 8 where it is difficult for 2 long boats to pass. The drizzle became heavy once reaching the main flight down to Kingswood Junction so we moored for a long lunch after lock 15.
Heavy drizzle, time to moor up.

After a lunch of Heinz Big Soup, ham sarnies, and local pork pie, you cant beat this on a wet day! we carried on down to Kingswood Junction, taking on water, I noticed the pump out is not working here.
Kingswood Junction.

The next part of the Stratford ranks as one of my favourites with delightful locks quite evenly spaced making for good exercise when lock wheeling.
Lock 29, one of the prettiest.

It must have been a hard summer down here, a number of the locks are showing some sign of wear or misuse, there is yellow hazard aware tape everywhere down these locks with some problem or another.
Broken Edging at this lock.

Broken beam held together with a large plank, the CaRT message on the
beam says do not sit or stand on this beam.

We finished up the day moored at Lowsonford visitor moorings, hot showers all round after a drizzly day.