Thursday, June 12, 2014

Fishy goings-on at Meaford

Well, the weatherman was right today; pretty much wall-to-wall sunshine since sunrise. I woke at half-five, dozed for a bit then decided to go for a run, such a shame to waste a glorious morning. I did the 3 miles to Stone and back, and ran into (nearly literally) a group of Environment Agency bods around Meaford Top Lock. But I didn’t quiz them at the time…

Last night, with the side hatch open on the water side, I was entertained by the varied repertoire of a thrush high in a tree opposite.
Singing his little heart out, he was. Absolutely superb.

Back at the boat this morning I showered, dressed and took Meg for a walk before we got away at around 10:00.

Leaving our overnight mooring near Wedgwood SAM_9975

A large family lurking near the boats at BarlastonSAM_9978

Approaching Meaford we started to notice several dead fish floating belly-up, obviously the reason for the Environment Agency presence.


Testing water samplesSAM_9981
I shouted across to them, and it turns out that the fish had suffocated, a lack of oxygen in the water.
Further on pumps were circulating water with the addition of a dilute Hydrogen Peroxide solution to replace the lost oxygen.
It was believed that a pollutant, maybe an organic fertiliser, was the culprit, but they hadn’t found the source yet.

The local anglers will be a bit miffed, they’ve lost some big fish.SAM_9985

Given the all-clear to proceed,we followed a boat down the four Meaford Locks, meeting up-coming boats on all but one.

Mags enjoying the cool in a lock chamberSAM_9987

The bottom lock had a leak, just in the right place to wet the doormat…SAM_9990
This is why we don’t have the side hatches open when locking! Squirts of water from lock walls as voids behind the masonry drain are known, somewhat inelegantly, as “pissers”. Appropriate, though.

We decided not to pull into Stone itself, instead mooring on the straight below the locks just to the north.SAM_9992

I unhooked John Sage from the rack on the stern and cycled into town to get some salad stuff for tea.

Shopping done I went looking for Roger and Pip on NB Windsong, found the boat but no crew, they must have been in the town. Maybe catch up tomorrow.

Hey Tom. Thanks for the suggestion. Do you know, off the top of your head, the standard Chinese brick size during the Chin Dynasty?
Chas and Ann, missing you out on the water too.

Locks 4, miles 3


Adam said...

I like the story about when the Queen Mother re-opened the Stratford canal, and was taken for a boat trip. Going down in a lock she was hit by a jet of water from the lock wall. "What was that?", she asked one of her hosts. "It's a pisser, maam", he replied. "I know", she said, "but what's it called?"

Geoff and Mags said...

Hey up Adam
thanks for that. Probably one of those urban legends, but none the worse for that! You could imagine the late HM saying that!

Tom and Jan said...


Look forward to your answer on total number required :-)

Carol said...

Love Adam’s story!!

Carol said...

Love Adam’s story!!