We set off at around 10 this morning, by the time I’d done what shopping was needed. First lock, just 100 yards ahead, was Star Lock, named for the pub alongside.
Moving out of town we managed to sneak past the swan family near Brassworks Bridge. The cob is notorious for attacking passing boats that invade his territory. He must be knackered with the number of boats about!
Only two locks to do today, the second was Aston Lock, which also marks the mid-point of the Trent and Mersey Canal.
These original mileposts were cast in Stone, marked “R&D, Stone, 1819” The R&D is Rangley and Dickson, a foundry company that was in Lichfield Road in the town.
During WWII all the posts were removed in case of an invasion, and 34 were lost. Replacements were cast by the Trent and Mersey Canal Society to the original pattern, sponsored by various companies and individuals
We moored a couple of miles further on, just past the village of Burston.
You can see from the picture that the bank is low enough for me to get at the gunwale, and I set to with the orbital sander to sand it down, before applying a couple of coats of black paint to the scrapes and scratches that this area inevitably collects.
When that’s dry the whole section will be rubbed down again, hopefully flat and level, ready for top coating. I’ve always used cheap black household gloss, rollered on and tipped off by brush to give a good finish. My thinking is that expensive coach enamel scrapes off on locks sides as easily as the cheap stuff.
The trend seems to be to use a matt black finish along here, it’s easier to repair. I might think about that.
With the threatened thunderstorms not yet arriving, I then rubbed down the cratchboard, inside and out, and gave it coat of grey undercoat. Still undecided on the colourscheme here.
We’ll see what the weather does tomorrow, we may stay here for the day or move on a bit.
Oh, and congratulations to the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, more commonly known as William and Kate, on the arrival of their long anticipated (at least by the media) baby. The boy, third in line for the throne, is likely to be a George or maybe James.
Locks 2, miles 3½