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Tuesday, 10 September 2013

Out in to the country.

A peaceful night was had and then we set off back down to Horseley Junction to continue down the Wolverhampton flight.

We were determined to get a good picture at the mirrored arch and this was the best we could do. The image is actually the full width of the arch with the grey sky as the background.

The Chubb Safe and Lock Factory. For let now so maybe they are made in China now. The building is wedge shaped.

We stopped on the tow path to get water and dump the rubbish. There is a door from the tow path and the tap is just inside. 

Broad Street Basin, Wolverhampton, and working boat 'Barnet'.

After Broad Street you are quickly at the top lock of the twenty one locks. I wouldn't be at all surprised it if it hasn't appeared in several films and TV programmes as it is almost unchanged from when they were built.

British Canal Navigation cottages 109/110 at the top lock of the Wolverhampton flight.

We passed a boat at Broad Street having come up the flight and when we arrived there there were another two coming up so we had high hopes that they would all be our way. The locks are well used so most of the paddle gear is fairly easy to wind and the gates are quite easy too. I worked the locks whilst Helen 'drove' and we soon got in to a rhythm.

Years of wear on the bridges and walls, but still original.

Bridges over untroubled waters.

We managed in the end to get a bit over half the locks with us on the way down and managed the twenty one locks in a very creditable 2 hours 45 mins, only five minutes longer than when we went up.

Helen at the bottom lock and still smiling.

After the turn at Aldersley Junction at the bottom of the Wolverhampton Locks we stopped for fuel at Oxley Marine. (86p). We had a very good chat and learned that the reason that boats/vessel were given the use of the cheaper Red Diesel was as a reward for the help of the small ships at the evacuation at Dunkirk in WWII. We also learned that there is only one chap at the HM Collector of Taxes to check out boaters declaration of use of Red and White Diesel, and he works part time. Boaters are charged only 5% tax on the percentage of fuel used for heating etc and full duty on that used for propulsion. We are now on the Staffs and Worcester Canal and soon after the Autherley Junction we came to the Pendeford Rockings where the canal had to be carved through a sandstone outcrop. The canla was left narrow but had passing places cut to allow two way traffic along its quarter mile length.

Pendeford Rockings and officially out of the urban setting, especially once under the M54 to Telford just after the narrows.

We stopped for the night near Coven and hung the washing up that had been on whilst we were on the move. It was soon almost dry. It seems like a new start again now we are in the country again.

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