Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Joining up.

We caught up with two pairs of rockers yesterday lunchtime. Ann and Kev on Rock’n’Roll, and George and Carol on Still Rockin’. I understand they’ve had a few comments, travelling together over the last few days. “Ooh what a coincidence with the boat names, sharing a lock”
If we changed our name to Rock On we’d certainly get the gongoozlers going!

It was damp and breezy yesterday morning when we emerged from Sunbury Lock cut and back onto the river.

The Weir pub. The boat that had moored ahead of us said the food was excellentIMG_0304

A pair of Environment Agency work-boats turned up to clear the weir of debris washed down on the stream.

Just above the weir the EA has a large depot, with an impressively sized dry dock.IMG_0306

Desborough Cut bypasses a large loop of river, saving just over ¾ of a mile. There are some moorings on the old river, but we’ve never investigated them. The cut emerges into the wide reach where the River Wey joins the Thames.Panorama
The Wey comes in from the left (south), dead ahead is Shepperton Lock. There’s a handy marine store, chandlery, on the right.

We had a short wait while the lockie emptied the chamber to allow a downstream boat to leave, then went in on our own. If we’re not sharing I usually ask if I can just use the centre line, it saves Mags having to be out hanging onto a rope. But this lock is pretty fierce, I was told, and he suggested I take the front line as well. He wasn’t wrong.
As the lock filled the boat surged back and forth on the lines. I concentrated on the front rope to ensure that the bow didn’t get pushed across the chamber and didn’t notice the centre line locking around a bollard. Luckily it was only the last foot or so but the tight rope still made Seyella lean alarmingly, opening drawers and causing Meg to abandon ship. The lockie had to close the top gates again and lower the level a bit for me to get the rope released. An elementary mistake which won’t happen again!

Out of the lock we hadn’t far to go to where the other two boats were waiting.

A couple of artificial calves watch over the garden of a house near Shepperton.IMG_0315
I wonder if the grass is artificial too?

One familiar boat, the other only known through photographs.IMG_0317

Carol is looking out for us…
…and George is waiting to help us tie up.

We had the Grand Tour in the afternoon. Still Rockin’ is an impressive boat, it’s amazing what an extra few feet of beam can make. George and Carol are justifiably proud of her. In the evening we all got together again in SR’s large saloon and had a great time chatting, with the odd bottle of wine consumed. It was just before midnight when the party broke up…

We’re staying here another night, the fuel boat Merchant is on it’s way downstream so we’ll fill with diesel. It’s a lot cheaper than that from the marinas. Shepperton Marina was asking £1.10/litre as we came past!

Locks 1, miles 3


Sue said...

Well the ol' "Wish I was there" comes to mind, but it was not to be.. shame.

The Thames lock keepers can be a big slow to re-act to something going wrong in the locks I hope your lock keeper wasn't. Great get together for you all, thinking of you. xx

Adam said...

We went round the loop of river at Desborough when we were last on the Thames, just to see what was there. The moorings looked very nice, next to a park -- although they were full up when we passed. I'd definitely check them out if we were down on the Thames again.