Thursday, November 04, 2010

A good road……..

That’s what the proper boatmen used to call having a flight of locks set in their favour. And that’s what we had today.

In carrying days gates were left open when the locks were cleared, on the principal that half the time they’d be ready for the next arrivals. But paddles were always dropped.

It seems unlikely though that the boat last down from Fradley was adhering to the old way of working. Probably just idleness drove them to leave the bottom gates open and the paddles up on all of the locks from the junction to Alrewas.
I shouldn’t complain, I suppose. Their lack of consideration actually helped us. I would have been pretty miffed if we’d been following them, though.

Bagnall Lock, the first of our “good road”
We only had a short run today, and Common Lock was only 15 minutes further on.

Into Common Lock, you can clearly see the raised paddle racks.
Easing under the road bridge at Keepers Lock

We moored just above Keepers.

A drizzly start led to a spell of bright but breezy weather, but the damp stuff returned a bit later. It’s the wind that’s going to be a pain though.

As a spin off from the Olympic site development, there has been multi-million pound facelift of the towpath and navigation on the River Lee, which runs close to the main venues.
BW are already looking into the opportunities for letting premium short-term moorings on the river near the Olympic Park.

But that extra revenue won’t be available if the Metropolitan Police and the Olympic Delivery Committee have their way. For security reasons they’d like to see three miles of the navigation and towpath closed during the games.
OK, I accept the need for vigilance, but what’s changed since the refurbishment work started? If this was on the cards from the beginning, why bother spending millions on the upgrades that no-one can take advantage of during the Games?

I just hope that common sense prevails. Else this could be the thin end of the wedge. After all, the safest way to conduct the events would be to exclude the public completely, and just televise the popular bits…..

Locks 4, miles 2


Anonymous said...

It really bothers us that boats may be excluded from the waterways around the Olympics before, during and after the games! I think that a procession of lovely decorated narrowboats should be part of the opening/closing ceremonies!

I believe that local boating clubs are campaigning to keep the waterways open during the games. I hope they succeed!

Sue, Indigo Dream

Geoff and Mags said...

Hi Sue
What a brilliant idea. The waterways are playing a significant role in the construction, so why not celebrate this at the opening!

Brian and Diana on NB Harnser said...

The link you have put in for the graphics boat doesn't work, try
As for the Olympics and canals it looks like a white elephant all round. The waterway has hardly been used in construction works and has cost BW (us) a fortune.

Geoff and Mags said...

Thanks Brian, I've fixed the link, got an extra bit in there from somewhere!
I hope you're wrong, but suspect you're right about the Olympic development. Still it might be worthwhile having a look after 2012.