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Friday, 23 August 2013

No Signal.

This post should have been sent yesterday but we have found the blind spot in the 3 coverage. The first time I can remember that we haven't been able to post a blog.

Wednesday night we moored close to the Anchor Inn and so felt that it would be rude not to go for a drink. As it  turns out the Wadsworth 6X was not my favourite drink. I have read a blog of  an Australian on the canals who had this as his first 'real ale' and hated it. I hope he tries the others as this was not one I would recommend to anybody. The pub is the old fashioned front room pub and they were extremely friendly, but the beer was not a strong point.

The Anchor Inn near Norbury Junction.

The next morning we were soon off and into Grub Street Cutting with it's well photographed double culvert bridge. The most unusual thing is the telegraph pole below the top bridge. These were a common feature in my youth but they have all but disappeared without me realising it. The regular appearance of deep cuttings and high embankments are still a feature of this section of the canal and were called valleys and rockings.

Double Culvery Bridge, Bridge 40, Grub Street Cutting.

Atmospheric Grub Street Cutting.

After Grub Street come Norbury Junction. This was where the Newport Branch led off towards Shrewsbury. There is a society to try to reopen it again and the 17 locks flight to Shrewsbury would be an interesting trip I'm sure.

The entrance to the Newport Branch Canal.

Passing through the busy Norbury Junction.

After Norbury we came to the Shelmore Embankment. This is looks to be about 80 or 90 feet high in places and it was the last part of the canal to be completed as it kept slipping. It took 6 years to be opened properly and almost a year after the rest was completed. It must have been a massive undertaking and the  cuttings and embankments must have been the same as having a motorway built through the landscape. There are stop gates on either end of the embankment just in case, and during the war they were closed every night, just in case.

The water point at Gnosall Heath ( Pronounced Nozul) was vacant so we stopped to fill up. We were soon off again and approaching Cowley Tunnel. It is only 81 yds long but is cut through solid rock.

Cowley Tunnel, Gnosall Heath.

A little further on there was two warehouses  one was for Cadbury's but is now a lovely house and the other was for the land owner. It is Lord Talbot's Wharf. It would make a lovely house too but has survived as was so far.

Lord Talbot's Wharf.

We went a little further on until we found a place where we could get close enough to the bank to be able to get off the back deck. The Shropshire Union is famous for it's 'ledge' that stops you getting right alongside.

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