Day : Thursday
Date : 22 August 2019
Start : 1100
Finish : 1715 Worcester
I have uploaded our proposed route to CanalPlanAC if anyone wants to see where we are likely to be. It gets updated with actual position each night.
Last night we said goodbye to George at the end of his second week with us. We had a farewell dinner at The Gardner's Arms and it was very good with very friendly service. I would recommend this pub if you want somewhere to eat while moored in Droitwich. Only one thing to watch the menu in the bar and restaurant are different.
The mooring was quieter than I expected and the trains didn't disturb us at all, it was 11am when we set off heading to the River Severn again, but higher up. Since we were last this way it looks as if more sections of towpath have been cut so it may be possible to moor here.
We passed under Salwarpe Bridge 7 which is a large brick built bridge on a sharp bend, There are holes in the brickwork in the arch of the bridge and I can only guess that these were to support timbers for the former of a scaffold.
A the first lock we came to we caught up with a hire boat who had left the basin quite a bit earlier than us, but by sharing locks Diana was able to walk to the next lock and set ahead all the time right down to Porters Mill Lock. At Porters Mill Lock the gates were open and the hire boater who had the rope around the prop yesterday was waiting to go in, but he very kindly waved us both past. below the lock all crews rejoined the boats and we set off following the hire boat to Mildenham Lock, it then became obvious why we caught up with the hire boat, I didn't get above tick over. Once through the lock, where not only did we meet two boats leaving the lock so the gates were open but we met another as we left the lock so could also leave it open, I made sure I was away first as I knew the other boat was stopping overnight above Hawford top lock. When we arrived at the lock there were already 2 boats there and a CRT work boat and only a small piece of bank mooring. We moored alongside the work boat and then I managed to pull us both back by two rings, so when the hire boat eventually arrived there was room for him to get bank side for the night.
After lunch we were off again, there is one of the nice new flow indicator boards at the lock showing there were no problems on the Severn, so we dropped through the two locks and as instructed by the board rang the Bever Lock keeper to tell him we were coming, but I only got his answer machine so left a message.
There is a lot of work ongoing at Bevere Weir that we could see as we approached the lock. Looking ahead I could see a green light which should indicate the lock is ready for us, but the top gates were closed, then it went red and the lock gates started to open, it should flash read to show the lock is being made ready, its soon turned to green and we were away. When we left the lock I looked back and the light was green and the gates shut. It only took us an hour to get to Diglis Lock which was empty, on the way we passed about 150 swans, no wonder they need bread to survive at that sort of density. We had just started filling the lock when a boat appeared below so Dian not only drew the bottom paddles but helped them lock up, by now a boat had turned the top lock so I went and helped them down. Eventually the boat joined us in the second lock heading back up to Alvechurch for Sunday morning, so we let them go first and helped them up Sidbury Lock. We carried on a bit further and moored on the rings just after Blockhouse lock and before Pizza express.
14¾ Miles 13 Locks in 5½ hours