Monday, July 26, 2010

And so back to Gloucester…..

We had a pleasant weekend moored near Splatt Bridge. We’d had the mail sent to the PO at Frampton, so picked that up on Saturday, along with a bit of shopping from the handy general store.

A regular visitor for bread.
Frampton on Severn is an old village, predating the canal by 800 years. It has a restored 17C tithe barn, 14C church, and what is probably the longest village green in the land.

Looking across one of two duck ponds on Frampton Green.It’s been a busy weekend out on the water, the fine weather fetching the day trippers out in droves. I’m glad we stayed put.

We moved off this morning, doing the 10 miles to Llanthony Bridge at Gloucester docks in one go.
Well, one go with 4 stops on route.

We’d filled up with water at Saul on the way down, and found it to be a busy spot with a very slow tap! So we filled up next to Fretherne Bridge instead.

Fretherne BridgeThe original bridge-keepers cottage is on the opposite bank, the modern operations hut on this side.
A lot of the single storey cottages are now rented, and not homes to BW staff.

The next stop was 200 yards away, at ACP Fuels to fill with diesel. At 71.4p per litre at bit more than we’re used to paying, but we needed it. With higher engine revs on the river and the wide open spaces of this canal, our consumption has gone up by about 5%.

Then we pulled in at Saul Sanitary Station to empty the loos and rubbish.

Finally we had a couple of hours, enjoying the day and ducking under the bridges that don’t need to be swung for us, before pulling up on the moorings alongside the handy Sainsbury’s supermarket.

Rea Bridge. You don’t even have to duck on the counter of a narrow boat.
Netheridge Bridge.This is a new bridge, opened 3 years ago to carry the bypass around to the east of the city. Like all of the spans it is designed to open to pass tall ships. Although the smart control tower is a bit of a luxury. It’s probably used no more than once a year. Perhaps as well, It carries a busy road.
The canal had to be re-routed, now performing an S bend, to accommodate the new road.
Bypass, bridge and new cut details here.

MV Queen Boadicea II with a cargo of day trippers out of Gloucester Docks.
Canal side shopping doesn’t get handier than this.
After the shopping we pulled up towards Llanthony Bridge and moored on Bakers Quay, on the offside.

We’ll see what the weather is like tomorrow before committing to our trip back up the river to Tewkesbury and the River Avon.

Locks 0, miles 10.

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