Friday, 5 August 2016

Pig Farm, Bishton

Yesterday morning we moved a hundred yards along the mooring at Fradley to the water point, and then waited an hour for it to fill the tank. Still it allowed time for breakfast and rubbish disposal. Moving through the swing bridge operated by the grandson of one of the volunteer lock keepers, we turned left onto the Trent and Mersey Canal. 

                          Trent and Mersey Canal and the Mucky Duck P.H. in the foreground.

We had three locks to negotiate, the first two went without hitch. On arrival at the third, Wood End lock there was a queue. Three boats waiting to go up.

                                              Waiting our turn at Wood End Lock.

It was also a slow filler, as the ground paddle was out of action. Then to cap it all, a very large log jammed itself behind the top gate preventing it from being opened. Eventually after much prodding with boat poles, the log was removed and we made it into the lock. By now there was a growing queue both ways.

                                              Boats queueing with more approaching in the distance.

We then enjoyed a warm, but blustery cruise through the countryside towards Armitage, famous for its toilet factory and collapsed tunnel. This open air remains of a tunnel, requires a crew member to go ahead, to prevent opposing boats from entering, whilst navigating the narrow section. We had to wait here for a convoy of three to pass through, before we could proceed. Then onto Rugeley for our planned stop, to visit the nearby Tesco superstore for supplies. Just as we moored the rain started, so all in all it was good timing and a suitable lunch break. After the shopping, we had two more miles to go to our planned mooring spot, by the Pig Farm at Bishton. Again, we timed our arrival just right to miss the rain. We also once again have satellite TV reception. The farm at the moorings here supply free range eggs and diesel from a barge. Our tank is currently full, but at 59p a litre we may fill up here on our way back in late September. 

                                                              Pig Farm moorings.

                                     Rugeley power station ( decommissioned ) across the fields.

Today we walked up to bridge 70, ahead of our mooring spot to visit the Wolseley Arms P.H. Not bad food but not dog friendly, so no good during inclement weather. 

                                                These pub lunches are wearing me out.

Near to the pub were some antique shops located in a barn and surrounding courtyard buildings. We had a look round and managed to avoid getting the wallet out despite there being some nice items on display. Tomorrow we will move off and once we are beyond Great Haywood junction, we will be on new waters.

Totals 9 Miles 3 Locks

Running total 236 Miles 145 Locks 12 Tunnels

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