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Friday, 22 July 2016

Reunions.

We were on a mission to get to Godalming by lunch time as we were to meet Helen's cousin Susan. There had been a bit of rain through the night but it was very muggy when we set off. The rowers from the Guildford Rowing Club where out on the river well before us.

Old Ferry footbridge that is on the site of the old St. Catherine's ferry that connected the ancient trackway and later the Pilgrims Way between Winchester and Canterbury. 

This is the sharp turn just after the Ferry Bridge, complete with the guide roller for horse drawn boats.

Helen dropping St, Catherine's Lock for us to enter.

Broadford Bridge is the lowest on the Wey and the air draft obviously varies depending on the height of the river. Hopefully we will not have massive torrential downpours over the next couple of days so we can get under again. Mind you there was plenty of clearance today.

Just after the low bridge is the junction with the Wey and Arun Canal. This canal was part of the route that enabled goods to be moved from London to Portsmouth. This was important during the Napoleonic Wars as it meant that goods did not have to brave the Channel with the chance of interception by the French. However there was little industry for trade before and after these times and it was officially closed in 1871. There are efforts to re-establish the link though.

The first part of the Wey and Arun canal is now moorings.

This is the picturesque flood plain of the Wey. The river runs very close to the navigation and there are numerous weirs down to the river.

Farncombe Boat House has several weekly and day boat hire craft and the day boats were out in force early in the day. I think that this was one of theirs coming through Trowers Bridge.

After Catteshall Lock we were catching glimpses of Godalming. 

As we had made good time we went and winded at the bend near the Wharf shed and went to fill with water and dump the rubbish. We had to disturb a bloke washing his boat at the water point.

We managed to meet up with Susan in the Sainsbury's car park and walked in to town to have lunch as the Sun. It was good to see her and catch up with the news.

For craft of any size there is no winding hole past the wharf but the Town Bridge is the head of navigation as there is no way under it other than maybe in a canoe or kayak. We walked back to the boat to show her to Susan and have a cup of tea and a bit of cake before Susan had to leave.

Whilst we were out the 'Iona' from the wharf must have passed us and was now on her way back. I was down the engine hole when I heard voices and it turned out to be the 'Iona' coming back and the girls cursing me for being there as they had to lift the rope over. Mind you I had read the warning in the NT booklet to not put aerials up etc so I did make the job as easy as possible for them. 

I think we will take a walk back into town later to do a walk around and see what we can see and Helen tells me that there is a Weatherspoon's too.

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