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Tuesday, March 24, 2009


Not had a very good Internet signal lately so will try and catch up with the journey.
After the saga of the leaking tank i`m glad to report all is well and the woodwork is drying out nicely even below the floor the paper i`ve been putting down the inspection hatch is not absorbing any water.
So after being imprisoned at the boatyard, and i know it was only 24 hrs but not having the freedom to move at will is not pleasant, a short cruise brings me to Fradley Jct. where i turn left onto the Trent & Mersey canal and up through 2 locks i decide enough for today and moore up in Fradley wood away from the hustle and bustle of the junction.
Setting off again passing through Handsacre & Armitage and below what used to be Armitage

tunnel just a road bridge remains and the next view are the towers of Rugely Power Station which tells me that the canal side Morrison's supermarket will be waiting to re-stock the galley.
After an overnight stop in Rugely i decide to move on and find a nice country mooring for a few days and looking at the map i decide to stop at Little Haywood which is on the northern side of Cannock Chase. Walking across the Chase is wonderfully peaceful with miles of woodlands to wander through, just look at the tree below shaped by nature and time.

Back on the boat the kettle on and just noticed the Hot air balloon passing directly overhead.
Time to get the chainsaw out and cut up some of the wood that seems to be plentiful around here
so much so this narrow boat was fully loaded perhaps being shipped off for sale somewhere.

Moving on through the lock at Gt. Haywood brings me to Gt. Haywood Jct. and a change to my original plan to carry on up the Trent & Mersey before cutting across to the Shroppie at

Middlewich a route perhaps i will use on the way back from the Llangollen and who knows where. I do intend to cruise the Macclesfield and Peak Forest Canals but as they are north of Stoke off the Trent & Mersey my thoughts are it would be better to branch off west go into Wales and come across eastwards to Middlewich and south onto the Maccie & Peak.
So after taking on water and dumping the rubbish at the services by the building to the right of
the bridge i reversed and turned under the bridge onto the Staffordshire & Worcestershire canal. Just a short way along and the canal widens at Tixall where there is enough water to do a figure of 8 if you so wished.

Moored up i spy John & Fiona on EPIPHANY. We have been passing each other for some time now.

Moving on across Tixall Wide stands the Gatehouse now used as holiday flats.
Further along the magnificent tunnel mouth that takes the railway line across Shugborough Park.
Well that's caught up a little on my journey but i am in fact a lot further on than the blog but i will try and bring the blog more up to date soon.

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D Baynham said...

Ohh you are in my neck of the woods, I spend loads of weekends at Tixall Wide, I love where we are moored at Great Haywood,it has so many trips and days out.

Chas and Ann said...

Hi Les, Pleased to see you are catching up with the blog. Unfortunately Sue, now off boat, has a problem with her blog. It is infected with malware. She hopes to sort it asap. Chas

Anonymous said...

wow that's some gate house.Glad you have solved the problem with the leak.

Les Biggs said...

Hi English blogger
Shame I didn`t realise you were moored at Gt Haywood I would have called in for a chat.

Les Biggs said...

Yes a big problem when cyberspace dumps a bug on a blog. Never mind Sue is good at computers so i`m sure the blog will be running soon.

Les Biggs said...

Hi Grey wolf
Yes it used to be part of a big hall and the owner allowed the canal company to go through his land as long as they created a nice lake to give him a nice view.

NB Valerie & Steam Train by Les Biggs

NB Valerie & Steam Train by Les Biggs