Friday, 21 August 2020

Droitwich Canal

Last nights mooring was fine and the wind died away overnight but had picked up again this morning. We set off a little earlier, just after 9-30 and headed down towards York St. Lock but another boat had the jump on us. It turned out they were stopping for a pumpout so once down we made our way through the basin to the narrow staircase locks.Map Stourport basin

There was a boat in the top lock when we arrived so we followed them down onto the river. The level was fine and the wind didn’t seem a problem, it was worse above the lock leaving the canal.DSCF4050

Not far down the river we passed some moored boats, I wonder if this is a genuine old VIC boat, her bows look very high but I think she is quite high in the water as her stern gear is exposed.DSCF4051

Down at Holt Lock they are are doing a lot work on the weir and have a large site about half a mile upstream. They have a barge in the river with the biggest crane I have ever seen on a barge completeDSCF4055 with fly jib. It was while taking this photo I lost my Breton cap. We did a Man Overboard drill but I am sorry to say the casualty was non recoverable. Down below Holt Lock the Holt Fleet and they now have a DSCF4057selection of eating pods out riverside. They don’t have details on their web yet but they do on their Facebook page.
We continued on downstream to Hawford Junction where the Droitwich Barge canal joins the river. As I swung round to enter the lock I could see a boat in the lock coming down so I dropped Diana and George off on the lock landing and then dropped back to give him room to leave as the entrance to the locks is not wide enough for two boats. He finally came out of the lock and tied up on the lock landing, him and his wife then proceeded to get coffee and sandwiches from the bow doors of the boat and take to the stern. The wife then took the helm and he unmoored the boat, not just a centre line before finally setting off out of the lockmouth and going upstream, I had been dodging around downstream of the lock all this time. map Hawford LockMuch to our surprise we found Lock 1 of the Droitwich Canal full of water. For some reason C&RT have tacked some kind of membrane on the insideDSCF4059 of the bottom gates. As you can see they didn’t cover all edges with the battens. Once through the lock we moored on the visitor moorings for the night  as we didn’t want to go all the way to Droitwich tonight.

Today’s Journey 10.5 miles, 9 locks in 4 hours.map 19Map courtesy of Waterway Routes https://www.waterwayroutes.co.uk/

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