Sunday, April 09, 2017

I’d forgotten…

…how pleasant the old Chester Canal is! It’s been quite a while since we were up this way, in fact eight years ago!

We set off from Barbridge at around a quarter to ten, heading north in bright sunshine. Until  Calverley the Chester Road runs alongside the canal, crossing from left to right at the awkward dogleg under Wardle Farm Bridge.
I’m guessing that the canal was shifted here to enable straightening of the turnpike, but t must have been prior to the late 19th century as the earliest map I can find shows the kink in the canal and the road running straight.

Mags held Seyella in place while I hopped off and picked up a paper at the Texaco garage near Bridge 103a, then the next stop was for water at Calverley services.

Permanent moorings both sides at CalverleyIMG_3922
The taps here are pretty slow, so it took around 45 minutes to fill the tank. Still, it gave the washer a chance to finish…

Old lime kilns in the embankment above BunburyIMG_3924 
As the Chester Canal was designed with craft from the River Dee in mind, the locks are broad. The first, heading north, is the double staircase at Bunbury.

Top chamber with a row of boat-horse stables alongside IMG_3926

Bottom chamber

There were a couple of volunteers on, which made life easier. They were waiting for the exodus of hirers from the Anglo-Welsh base situated just below the locks.


The canal becomes very pretty along here, after passing under the West Coast Main Line. IMG_3929

Must have been a big family to have this many black sheep in it!IMG_3930

Two boats conveniently leaving Tilstone Lock as we arrive.IMG_3931
Note the unusual circular lock-keeper hut on the left.

Dropping down Tilstone Lock

We pulled just after lunchtime in a pleasant sunny spot just down from the lock.IMG_3936

After lunch I watched Hamilton scrape pole position for tomorrow’s Chinese Grand Prix, then I took off the cratch cover and got another length of rotted out stitching replaced. It’s tedious but needs doing. Just one more three foot bit to do, now.

We’re staying put tomorrow, engine and gearbox service to do in the morning, Grand Prix highlights to watch in the afternoon. Might make a lemon cake as well…

Thanks Ade, Carol. I don't often put pictures of the both of us on, do I. Should do more.
Hiya Sue. Yeah, done well this year - first lambs and now first ducklings! Looking out for cygnets and I'll have the Triple Crown! And the next time I set off on John Sage I'll remember the pump! Glad to see you're out and about again, and that Meg is improving. Enjoy your weekend, I know that spot...

Locks 3, miles 3½


Paul (from Waterway Routes) said...

Do you mean the (L&NWR) Crewe to Chester Line, rather than the West Coast Main Line

Carol said...

Ooh, lemon cake!

Geoff and Mags said...

Yes Paul, you're right. Should have checked first...
Carol, yes still making that cake to your recipe. Very much appreciated by all visitors. It's yummy. I didn't get round to it though. Maybe today, if not definitely tomorrow.