In yesterdays blog I said we visited Hockley Port down the Soho Branch. Tom A fellow blogger Waiouru commented that he had spent some time there and found this site very informative and interesting Hockley Port .
This morning when we got up our neighbours were long gone. We backed out of the Oozells St Loop onto the main line and headed down to the Farmers Bridge locks. I have never seen Cambrian Wharf so empty, only two boats in the whole basin. The first lock was with us, but it was the only one. We were joined by a C&RT volunteer who was really helpful and we sped down the flight with Diana setting ahead, me driving and working the off side paddles and him working the near side and closing up. The flight is now well enclosed with different
types of accommodation, probably how it would have been enclosed 200 years ago with factories. The road has been supported down at Saturday Bridge. I suggested they should be painted red an yellow, then they could ask Lego to sponsor it.At Aston Junction we carried on round to the right, the building work carries on along here, lots of the buildings in this area are connected to The Birmingham University. Its good to see some of this old building is being preserved.Our next light of locks was the Ashted Flight, after dropping down through the first lock you are into Ashted Tunnel. I misjudged this and removed some red paint from the handrail.We carried on down the next 5 locks and through Curzon Tunnel which is not only very wide but also slightly curved. We went straight on a Digbeth Junction into Typhoo Basin, somewhere we have never ventured before, we thought it a good opportunity to stop for lunch, its a pity there are no mooring rings or bollards , so centre line to a railing made sure we didn’t drift about too much.By the time we had finished lunch it started to rain, so coats on, by the time we left the basin it had stopped. At Digbeth Junction this time we turned right. Its a shame that the old stop lock and adjoining building is not being more actively preserved. The lock gates and beams look in very good condition but the covered toll dock and island could do with some love. On our way to Bordesley Junction we passed lots of graffiti but these little white birds that kept popping up caught my eye.At the junction we turned left to head down the 5 Garrison Locks, again they were all against us, as we dropped down through 4 I could see a boat moored ahead on lock 5 lock moorings, we were three quarters of the way there when they all appeared and set off, so even lock 6 was now against us. Some of the crew were somewhat elderly and they explained that “mother” had prepared lunch and they though they had time to eat it between 5 and 6. It was a Kate boat from Warwick so they have a good weeks work to do. We followed them down and moored on the floating Star City moorings for the night.
Today’s journey 7 miles, 24 locks in 3.25 hours. Map courtesy of Waterway Routes https://www.waterwayroutes.co.uk/