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Friday, April 01, 2016

The Great Escape.

Here is a lady who has something to dance about. It`s raining and the wind is a blowing and that boat does not usually move in lousy weather so perhaps it`s  a sun dance.
Here`s a clue. Ok just a lock but not just any lock. This is Radford lock a boundary of the Five Mile Prison. You guessed it we are on the move following Jaq`s discharge from the Physio classes.
Quite a few of the locks had these cill protectors fitted during the winter stoppages.
Some canal art by a winter moorer who was here for a few months.
First stop for a couple of days at Long Itchington after 10 locks and 4 miles, should be far enough to escape any prison search parties.
On past the Two Boats pub.
Going up the Stockton flight of 8 locks some Lime Kilns can still be seen by the lower locks.

 Another sign of work completed during the winter are the lock chamber ladders.

Some are new but the big improvement is the cutting back of the stonework enabling more of your foot to cover each rung.

In the very rare times I have used these ladders I always felt unsafe as mostly it was the ball of your foot on the rung now it`s the arch giving a more secure feel.

Having spent many years single handing a boat I never used the ladders. Being on your own perhaps in a very remote area climbing a ladder is just another risk. So much safer to step off the boat with a centre rope as you enter the lock.
The extra depth between the rung and the wall is an excellent safety improvement.

Settled in for another couple of days. This is a good place for a Tesco delivery as there is a small car park just behind the trees with access just by the notice board at our bow.
In case you thought the boat behind had an odd looking paint job I can reveal it is in fact the Wool boat. It travels around selling wool and inviting clubs aboard for knitting sessions. The site does mention stays on board of up to seven days but the site is not clear about what this is all about.
Across from our mooring the Boat Inn pub now has a Deli stall with a range of spices.

Last year the pub was up for sale and the price of £349k  for the freehold caught my eye. Seemed cheap but reading the details it seems to not include furniture and any commercial fixtures and fittings.
 I wonder what the final sale price was.


KevinTOO said...

Phew, 'The Great Escape' has happened at last... LOL
Enjoy your freedom, you've earned it :)

Anonymous said...

Hurray! Lovely to see pics of you on the move again.xx


Carol said...

What a relief for you both …. happy cruising! xxx

Steve and Angela said...

Congratulations on your escape. Hope you have a great year of cruising to come.
Steve and Angela

Les Biggs said...

Hi all
It`s so nice to be able to move, at the moment just small distances as we have a few things to do but having those restraints taken off is fantastic.

Anonymous said...

Great to see you're on the move again!

Single-handed lock operation question (excuse my ignorance): if you are going downhill, how do you get back into the boat to bring her out of a deep lock if you don't use the lock ladders?


Les Biggs said...

Hi Alistair
keep the centre rope with you and as the boat lowers in the lock and you open the gate just pull the boat out. As the boat clears the gate you shut it and walk down steps and step aboard.
Single handing is about safety and the most dangerous time is at locks. Avoid climbing ladders and only use one paddle, just in case you slip crossing gates.Above all take your time.
Going up step off boat with centre rope as boat enters lock. Practice will mean the boat still entering as you casually walk up steps to lock side.

Anonymous said...

You make it sound so easy! I guess practice and experience is key. Thankfully I'll have two teenagers to help me this summer. Or maybe they'll be on the tiller and I can work the locks for a change!

Thanks for the explanation.


NB Valerie & Steam Train by Les Biggs

NB Valerie & Steam Train by Les Biggs