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Thursday, 25 August 2016

Leaving the smoke.

We left our long time mooring with a heavy heart as we have had a great time in London. After over two weeks it is tough to disconnect the shore cable too. We left once No.1 daughter arrived to come with us for the day.

Saying goodbye to the St. Pancras basin and lock.

There was plenty of traffic at Camden Locks but the gongoozlers hadn't amassed by the time we went through

As we arrived at the sharp bend where the Cumberland Basin left the Regent's Canal is this floating Chinese restaurant. Once again there didn't seem to be too many folk walking about.

The good hot weather seemed to have brought the birds out so that we could get a good view in the aviary.

We even saw some wild dogs and this wart hog as we passed too. 

We came to the Macclesfield Bridge that was opened in 1816 and was named after the Chair of the Canal Company. The fluted columns were made in Coalbrookdale. On 2nd October 1874 at 0455 a tug was pulling five boats behind it. One of the boats, the 'Tilbury' was carrying loose bags of gunpowder and barrels of petroleum. Some how the gun powder was ignited and a massive explosion took place. The sound was heard 25 miles away and debris was flung great distances. The bridge was destroyed and three men and a horse were killed. The canal was only closed for four days. The bridge was later rebuilt using the same fluted columns that were damaged on the side of the explosion, so they just turned them round.

Here we are about to leave the Regent's Canal under Warick Avenue Bridge and enter Rembrandt Gardens and Little Venice. I'm not sure how much the moorings are along this stretch but you don't get much for the money and the road is noisy.

Trellick Tower is a definite landmark in the area. It was designed by Erno Goldfinger and was completed in 1972 in the Brutalist style and was a council house block of 31 storeys. The side tower actually houses the plant and pipework. It was oil fired but now is electric. Not long after opening it was known for socail and crime problems but now they are desirable properties, and most are now in private hands. It is not very energy efficient but has been Grade II listed.

There is another unusual building further on at Ladbroke Grove. It is an old 1930's water tower that held 5000 gallons of water. It was bought in 2005 by designer Tom Dixon and work started in 2009. It was completed in 2012. The 60' tower is now on the AirBnB list if you fancy a visit.

Here's the gang crossing the North Circular aquaduct.

The lighthouse on The Broadway Uxbridge Road, Southall is to advertise the Shurgard Self Storage company for some reason.

The trip from St. Pancras seems to go on and on, so it was good to have Amy with us. We stopped at Alperton so that she could catch the tube back home after we had our lunch. It was sad to see her go after seeing so much of her for a week or so., but we will see her again in a couple of weeks.

When we left Little Venice I started to make a note of the boats we passed. I counted the ones that displayed an in date licence, those that had an out of date one and ones that displayed nothing. I was I had counted the total number of boats we passed to but I couldn't see windows of some boats so those don't figure in the tallies. I counted 403 boats and I estimate I missed about 60 or 70. This was between Rembrandt Gardens and Bulls Bridge. I counted those in Engineers Wharf but not Willowtree Marina. My figures came out at 57% displayed a valid licence, 26% showed no licence at all and 16% showed an out of date licence. Obviously I only saw on side of each vessel and the fact that in date licence wasn't displayed doesn't mean they were out of date. However I think that it is a regulation to display a valid licence on each side of the vessel at all times. The money and time required to check everything must be great. I also saw just two prominent over stay notices pinned to vessels. Nothing conclusive in these figures, but interesting none the less.

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