Passing up through Moor lock between Alrewas and Fradley this is where there is going to be a new 60 berth marina. According to the owners it will be an environmentally friendly design that will appear to behave like a natural body of water rather than a boat park.
After passing through Fradley junction we turned left and onto The Coventry canal .How about this for his n her boats and Guess what ? Carolyn thought it was a great idea . The only problem I could see with us doing this is that my meals would get cold in the time it took Carolyn to get from her boat to mine.
Reaching Glascote locks we passed this boat which we last saw a couple of years ago and it certainly is a very unusual design .ELIZABETH is a converted narrow boat with an iron hull believed to be from the 1860s which was altered by Warrens Shipyard, New Holland, in 1936. Her British Waterways number was 70540. She has a mahogany cabin and pitch pine decks. Her engine is a Gardner 2LW, with 28 horsepower and two cylinders.
We soon made it to the top lock of the and after leaving the lock we passed Glascote basin where they used to make the very desirable Hudson narrowboats. Of course there is no way that I’m going to mention false rivets.. OOPS ! I just did.
After a night moored just outside of Tamworth near the Golf course we pulled pins at 07.10 with the intention of getting up Atherstone locks before it got too busy. We stopped on the services to fill with water before the lock and three boats past us which made us fourth in line to go up.
We passed several boaters coming down who were having a moan about the Volunteer lock keepers on duty. It seems that there were three on duty and they were all on the top lock, nattering and drinking tea where they have their hut. A bit of a difference to the three at Fradley junction a couple of days ago who each worked a lock of their own.To be honest it doesn't really matter to us if they help or not, we are more than happy to lock ourselves through.
After we reached the top of the flight we moored for ten minutes outside the old hat factory. Its such a shame to see this building in such a state and it’s not a good advert for the town, in fact it puts you off stopping here for any amount of time. It seems like Atherstone has been a centre for hatmaking since Tudor times. In the 17th century when the wearing of felt hats instead of caps became increasingly common, Atherstone became the West Midlands centre for the manufacture low cost hats. Hats from Atherstone were sent all over Britain and further afield, around the world to British colonies. In the aftermath of the Second World War. Despite booms and troughs caused by fashion, the market remained on a downward trend. In the 1970s only three hat factories remained in Atherstone – Denham & Hargrave, Vero & Everitt and Wilson & Stafford. In the 1980s as the market contracted further, Wilson & Stafford bought out the other two firms, but could not continue much longer. The Wilson & Stafford factory survived for another decade and was the last to close in 1999.The building was due for demolition in 2008 in order to build flats, but for one reason or another this work has not yet been carried out.
We carried on cruising for another hour before stopping at Mancetter for the night . Tomorrow we will push on through Nunneaton and hopefully pick up a mooring at Hawkesbury junction