Away at 8 this morning, although the planes were noisy until about 11 after that it was quiet but I still didn’t sleep very well so it was no problem getting up today. Managed to get a better photo of the Humber Keel Daybreak as we passed her this morning, we had been behind her under the willow. Moored just ahead of her was this boat.
The first lock was still on self service when we arrived and a large vessel came in behind us, 2 hire boats arrived to come down as they had to be back at the yard for 9 am.
Bell Weir lock house has a painting depicting the Magna Carta on the end of it facing the lock. It was supposedly signed not far form here.
Carrying on towards Windsor I wonder if this house holder will be covered by his insurance for this damage to his wall, I somehow doubt it. His next door neighbour is the owner of a cruiser which he keeps it over the river but above the water on a folding frame which I guess is hydraulically powered.
Then just around the bend a rather posh house with large gardens comes into view, on the down side ins on the landing flight path for Heathrow Airport but I am sure that is only a minor problem. I am sure if the owner was hard up she would be able to make a few bob from letting the moorings at £5 a night they must be half a mile long and all hard edged so maybe £10 a night.There was quite a long wait to get into There was quite a long wait to get into Romney Lock and a good queue built up behind us while waiting for the lock. The Lock Keeper had squeezed 11 boats in coming down and the last few were rather slow in entering the lock. He said he could have got another couple in if need be. Plenty of room for a Narrowboat down the middle. Once they were out it was our turn and we were right at the front, but this lock fills from the sides so its not so turbulent at the front but the boats do get pulled to the centre. This was us coming out, I had let the cruiser with the fenders go ahead as he would have passed us soon as we were out anyway.
Streetley the second steam boat of the day had just loaded in Windsor with a private party and a string quartet on the bow.
We stopped for water just before Windsor By-Pass bridge, the mooring was a bit tight as there was a speed boat moored to one end of the water point mooring but they soon moved it when they saw we were coming in. Just after we had finished taking water the Water Bus came down the slipway directly in front of us, it caught us both on the hop and we only managed a photo once it was afloat. Once full of water we moved off and the speedboat moved back to the middle of the water point moorings. When we arrived at Boveney Lock there sat Streetley waiting to get into the lock, this lock is much smaller than the next one down. Being small once Streetley was in there was no room for us so we and 3 small boats had to wait for the next locking. We thought we would moor by the Dorney Rowing lakes, I could see lots of boats there so thought I would moor by the concrete just prior to that and went hard aground, it took several minutes to extract us from this, the boat would rock and screw round, but didn’t want to come off, eventually it did and we moved up to the 24 hr moorings right at the end of the lake. There were three cruisers there all spaced out so I asked the chap in the middle one if he would move back a bit, he said why, you’ll get in there, he said he would move back of forward if I wanted him to but felt sure I would get in. He was right, he came and held the bow for us and the chap from the boat ahead came and took the stern rope just as the wind was getting up. I had to make two attempts at it as the wind was stronger than the river flow, but we tucked in nicely between them both. Mind you we are still on the flight path for Heathrow so another short night.