Seem to be drifting along slowly but making some progress heading south. The town of Atherstone has had a makeover since we last passed this way. The shops along the roman street have been painted and the town is busy with people.
Back on the canal it is a different story. The damp weather has just made the poor state of the tow paths worse. Puddles and mud making it difficult and unpleasant to walk.
This was back in 2004
It is such a shame that the lock keeper appears to have left. In many past years the flight of locks were so well kept with painted gates, cut grass, trimmed hedges and tubs of flowers at the top lock cottage.
Any volunteers that British Waterways are looking for will have a hard act to follow. Apparently ‘Job Seekers’ have been volunteered to work on the tow paths around Stoke. The teams have been set to work cutting back vegetation, repainting metalwork and resurfacing the paths. A scheme organised between the government. B. W. and the local council. Let’s hope that will encourage the general public to show some respect to the canals.
Despite our seemingly slow progress we have got through that grubby town of Nuneaton. Rubbish is being thrown over into the canal at bridges and covers the banks with drink containers, plastic bags and goodness knows what else. Perhaps the council here should be getting volunteers to clear it but maybe they don’t care either.
We are now on the Oxford canal and stopping around Rugby. The tow paths here are no better.
The sun came out to play its warmth on the land and we walked round Newbold Quarry lake with Sue, Vic and the girls.
Why is that left there?
Simple, just put it in there.
Just a quiet place.
We then stopped the night at Clifton. Ann went up to the shops to get her hair cut and bring back the post. I set to and cleaned out our oil fire which needs scraping out every two or three weeks. The oil leaves behind a handful of carbon deposits which needs a sharp knife to loosen it. Also discovered that the securing screws had got loose and the whole fire had moved a bit.
Next day was sunny n warm which made for an enjoyable trip up the Hillmorton locks. The rare cast iron 150 year old gates have been taken out, restored, painted and replaced. But the lock paddles are always hard to lift on this flight and the winter stoppage has not improved them.
Moved on to a mooring near the prison for naughty boys. Later we were joined by Les on NB Valery.