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Monday, October 06, 2008


Coming south on the Leicester arm of the Gd. Union and reaching Nth. Kilworth I noticed that the Kilworth Wharf yard has now got some hire boats bearing the Anglo Welsh name. This yard only re-opened in the last 2yrs and it`s nice to see it once again doing business giving boaters another place to refuel and browse the growing chandlery.
Less than a mile further on is the Welford arm just over a mile long and not surprisingly ends at the village of Welford. Just one single lock rising 3`6" brings us into the Wharf and a few days rest in peaceful surroundings and a chance to finish off some of the painting so at least Tina will stop looking at the undercoated patches and insisting my boat has some disease.
Welford is an interesting place and the Wharf has a large information board showing detailed maps of 5 walks of 2,3,5,6 and 8miles all starting at the Wharf, one even starts up the drive way of a house and through a garden gate. Around the Wharf can be found remains of the lime kilns that turned Limestone brought in by boat into the lime that was then again shipped out by boat.
Also walking towards the lock what is now a marina on the towpath side was once a clay pit and brickworks.
Around the Welford area were six watermills powered by the R. Avon that starts it`s long
journey to the Severn from here at Welford. When I look at the narrow stream made wider here by tractors crossing I find it amazing that a short while ago the flooded Avon held me prisoner for a few days. From small acorns...............
Walking around the village a chap waved and told me about the first class postal service the
villagers got and am i on one of the 5 walks around Welford. Well I didn`t go for the 8 mile one but did the 2 mile walk that crosses the Welford and Sulby reservoirs that feed the canal.
Pictured below is the Watford lock flight consisting of 3 singles and a staircase of 4. In the picture NB Valerie is in the staircase flight and the lock gate behind is also the front gate of the lock Valerie has just left. Water here as at Foxton goes in&out of the side pounds and this is controlled by boater operated red & white paddles that have to be operated in a colour sequence so the rhyme to remember is
red before white and you`ll be all right
white before red and you`ll end up dead
Well ok not dead but the lockie will be none to pleased you losing his water.

After the flight further south brings us down to Norton Jct. where the main Gd.Union to London is joined and it was also the place my son Kev & Jo brought 2 of the grandchildren, would have been 4 if I hadn`t had to share with other g`parents which meant Lena may & Nicole were sadly missed this time. Anyway Kiernan & Keira kept me company and we all went to the pub for lunch.
Lastly my homemade device to help deter fuel theft that is becoming common from boats recently. Just a piece of angle iron cut and drilled as can be plainly seen so no complicated description or drawings are needed. It`s all fixed to the spillage guard that stops any filling overflow going down into the engine bay. Before anyone says it can be removed with a crow bar or bolt cutters the same amount of force can be used by way of a drill to remove the locking caps that are on sale now in chandlers at £30/40. All locking devices are a deterrent if they want to get in they will but at night when most thefts occur the noise caused will make the thief look for an easier quieter target.
Scrap angle iron, 1 hour of my retirement and a £5 padlock.


Nb Yarwood said...

Great Post again Les. We will be out there on the cut very soon so the Welford arm is definately going to get a visit from NB. Caxton and crew - the two dogs will love the walks!

Les Biggs said...

Hi Lesley
Can`t wait to see Caxton on my travels.

NB Valerie & Steam Train by Les Biggs

NB Valerie & Steam Train by Les Biggs