Sunday, May 17, 2015

Slow going

During breakfast we decided to stop again at that shop near Fenny for a few more provisions. Set off at 9 with a slow boat in front. Ann and Molly are in front walking the towpath and have to stop to let me catch up! The boat in front got stuck on a corner when another boat past the other way.

Yet another slow boat in front after we stopped at the shop!
Just past Fenny is the Tunnel Bridge and a narrow section that was a tunnel. We eventually got down two locks at Claydon where we stopped.

We walked the half mile to Claydon intending to visit the Bygone Museum but found it gone.
Heavy lorries are not meant to cross the canal hump bridge.

Saturday, May 16, 2015

The summit pound

This ten-mile pound we are on is the canal between the top of Claydon locks and the top of Napton locks at Marston Doles. It needs dredging for most of its length. There are many bends in it, often with bridges at the bends! We could only achieve about 2 or 3 miles an hour. Any faster made the boat sticks to the bottom and goes strait on at the bends!

We stopped for a tea break at Fenny Compton Wharf. The Wharf Inn has a shop for essential provisions. We got coffee, tea, beans and marmalade there so it was well worth the visit.

We continued to Marston Doles where Windsong came round the corner. Roger and Pip helped us when we were on the river Nene many years ago now. We just exchanged greetings as we passed.

We continued down two locks and stopped near the engine arm but there is no phone signal here. Thankfully the TV was perfect. We have a limited time on board and at breakfast we decided to turn round. We would have turned down at Napton next day but that would have been a waste of water. Just could not face up to all those locks this time.
We are on board to enjoy the countryside not to cover miles and miles. Many fields are bright yellow with the Rapeseed. Other fields have sheep and new borne lambs. We got about half way back and stopped at Knotts Bridge 130. There is a tall radio mast and the High Speed rail link is planned to pass over the canal here.

Thursday, May 14, 2015

News of interest

Extracts from Towpath Talk/Narrowboat World.

Dredging has taken place outside Crick marina before the show.  But water voles have a protected length where no boats can moor!

The IWA are encouraging contact with MP's to support for the Inland Waterways.  They are also organising the removal of invasive plants like Himalayan Balsam.

Many weirs on the Thames are being upgraded to help reduce flooding.

It seems that many canals are still being used for 'fly tipping'.  Volunteers are pulling out many large items.  Such things as bicycles, chairs, tyres and shopping trollies!

Are there fewer boats using the canals or are there more boaters not paying for their license?

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

A visit to the boat in May

Before leaving home we see the Rhododendrons blooming in Dibden woods.

It is a two hour drive north heading for Cropredy near Banbury, always plenty of cars and lorries to follow. We take three or four boxes containing food, clothes and electrical goods. Just cannot travel light!

Once on the boat it does not take long to wake her up by turning on water, electric and gas so we can make that refreshing cup of tea! We have a just over a week this time because we have commitments back home.

The marina is holding a boat jumble next weekend so we had a clear out. Tis surprising what you collect over the years!

The diesel and water tanks are full so the boat is ready to move. Then we get a phone call from our friends Terry and Myra. They visit on their way back from Crick and we go to the Brasenose Arms for lunch.

It is a lovely sunny afternoon so after lunch we set off north on the Oxford canal. We did eight locks in a few miles to get up to the summit at Claydon. Many other boaters were moving up and down helping us on the way.

Tuesday, May 05, 2015

Our boating plans

I just hope that these plans come true.  Reading the other blogs our friends write only remind me how I miss that way of life so.

We plan to get back up to Cropredy Marina on May the 12 th.  Traveling north on the Oxford and return home from Cropredy on May the 21 st.

We are to look after our grand children's animals while they are away on holiday.

Our next window of opportunity will be June the 2 nd.  Once again we move north and head on down to Bugbrooke where we are to get the boat painted some time in July.  The boat will be staying at Heyford Fields Marina for a while.

We need to get back home for Ann's next checkup at the end of June.  During July we probably will be driving up to see the painting in progress.

The Cropredy festival is in August so we will not return the boat till after that event.

Life on land is just not the same, being in one place and 'available' means that we get committed to do other things!  Just hope that while we are on the boat we get to meet some of our boating friends.  Please pencil those dates in your diary's!

Monday, May 04, 2015

Political History

Previous General Elections

1997   LABOUR          PM Tony Blair

Labour 419, Conservative 165, Liberal Democrats 46, Others 28, turn out 71%

2001   LABOUR          PM Tony Blair

Labour 413, Conservative 166, Liberal Democrats 52, Others 28, turn out 49%

2005 LABOUR           PM Gordon Brown

Labour 355, Conservative 197, Liberal Democrats 28, Others 32, turn out 61%

2010 CONSERVATIVE/LIB DEM     PM David Cameron

Conservative 306, Labour 258, Liberal Democrats 57, Others ?, turn out 65%

It is best to remember the past when deciding who to vote for.  Promises can be broken!  We should all use our democratic right to vote.