Saturday, January 29, 2011

On to The Bratch

Just a short day today, 1½ miles down to The Bratch. It’s stayed fine over the last couple of days, but it has also been cold. We had a thin skim of ice on the canal again this morning.

We were away just before 11:00, straight into Dimmingsdale Lock.

Down Dimmingsdale

Just around the corner is Ebstree Lock, near a large electrical substation. Although we appear to be in open countryside, we’re less than 4 miles from Wolverhampton city centre.

Signs of civilisation

Above Awbridge Lock is the coalman John Jackson’s base of operations. His working narrowboat Roach was lying almost empty at the wharf.

NB Roach, a Northwich boat built at Yarwoods on the Weaver in 1935.

The next lock, Awbridge, has all the features that typify this canal.

Circular by-wash weir

Cast iron footbridge with decorative pierced supports

(No Safety Elves in the 18C....)

And an attractive bridge at the lower end.

Just less than a mile further on we pulled in on the moorings above The Bratch. After a welcome lunch of soup and rolls on Rock’n’Roll, we took the canines for a walk down the 3 locks that take the canal down the steep slope, to Bridge 45 and back again.

At the Round Oak pub, they’ve a new head chef.

I wonder what the old one tasted like?

Here’s something to put in the diary. Don’t forget, a week tomorrow at 19:00.

Locks 3, miles 1½

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