Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Up the last flight.

Up Tyrley Locks today, unfortunately in the rain. The forecast led us to believe that it wouldn’t rain till after lunch, but you can’t trust these weather people, can you.

By the time we’d filled the water tank it was going on for 10 o’clock. The canal leaves Market Drayton on an embankment, but at Tyrley Castle Bridge it enters a cutting which leads to the bottom of the 5 Tyrley Locks.

Contemporary buildings at Talbot Wharf

Just half of the ducklings chasing about near the moorings just past Newcastle Road Bridge.DSCF2968

Looking south-west from the embankmentDSCF2969

Soft dog Chester and owner at Tyrley Castle BridgeDSCF2970
They came past us while we were filling with water. Well the owner did, but Chester refused until I’d got back on the boat. I don’t normally have that effect on dogs…

Approaching the bottom lock at Tyrley, and there’s a boat coming down. Good timing.DSCF2973

These locks are known for having savage by-washes, so I was hopping on and off the boat as we moved up. Consequently I didn’t get any pictures until we got to the top.

Canal cottages and converted stables at Tyrley Top LockDSCF2976

You’ll probably have to click on the picture to enlarge it…

That’s the last concentration of locks done now. There’s one more chamber at Wheaton Aston and the final shallow one just before the junction with the Staffs and Worcester at Autherley.

From the wharf the canal dives very quickly into the first of the deep cuttings. Woodseaves Cutting runs for about 1½ miles and is around 60 feet deep at it’s deepest.

There’s supposed to be a mysterious “monkey man” lurking in the cutting, in 1879 it reputedly attacked a man and made off with his horse! No sign of it today, although I did spot a mink drying itself on a log.

In the cutting, High Bridge appropriately crosses the deepest bitDSCF2995


It might be the deepest section, but it’s not the most impressive. At the southern end, just before Cheswardine Bridge, the channel is cut through several feet of solid rock.
No heavy equipment in 1835. All done by hand with the aid of black powder.

It had been raining gently since we left Market Drayton. But now it started to get heavier so I decided to call it a day at Goldstone Wharf, just a half mile from the end of the cutting.

It’s supposed to be damp again tomorrow, but with no locks to do at least Mags can stay dry. We will move, but probably not too far.

Locks 5, miles 3½

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