Thursday, April 21, 2011

Barlaston Bound

We got a relatively early start today; with this amount of traffic about we thought we’d try to avoid the queues at the locks.

First of the day, Star Lock

We topped up with water just below the lock, then got away. A couple of early-birds had already gone up, but there was no-one ahead of us as we got through the lock.

After Yard Lock I trotted along to the chandlery at Stone Boatbuilders while Mags brought Seyella along the pound, then we had a short wait while NB Flat Bottomed Girl came down Newcastle Road Lock.

Newcastle Road Lock under the bridge.

The tunnel on the left saves crossing the busy road.

The 4 locks in Stone were the first to be constructed on the Trent and Mersey Canal. Work began in 1766, but it was 11 years before the whole route was open, the last bit being the 1¾ mile long Harecastle Tunnel at the summit. Digging a 9 foot wide tunnel that distance was a considerable achievement with the equipment available at the time.

The last of the 4 locks in Stone is Limekiln, then there’s time for a brew before getting to the bottom of Meaford Locks.

Here we slowed down dramatically with 2 single-handers in the flight ahead of us. So a steady climb up the 4 locks saw us out at the top by 12:30.

In Meaford Flight

Another 3 miles of gentle cruising and we pulled over between Barlaston and Trentham near the Wedgewood factory moorings.

I always envy the owner of this house near Barlaston.

Large gardens, fine house and your own moorings. Bliss.

Moored near Bridge 104.

Locks 8, miles 3¾

1 comment:

Carol said...

Hi Geoff - You're on our home territory of Stoke-on-Trent - I approve of your mooring slot -it's certainly one of our favourites on that stretch. Tell Mags I made another ginger cake yesterday (3rd one) and they all sink in the middle - what am I doing wrong? regards Carol