Friday, 10 February 2017

Bye bye Banbury


IMG_0917While Carolyn raises the lift bridge I pass Tooley’s Boatyard,which is situated in the heart of Banbury ,it has the oldest working dry dock on the Inland Waterways, having been in continuous use since 1790. It also has an 86′ dry dock which is fully covered and heated. Also on-site is the 200 year-old forge which is in regular use by blacksmiths. Also they had 42 quid of mine as we had to buy a new riddle for our stove from them after ours fell to bits.


IMG_0920After dropping down the lock we used the services before heading down to the winding hole to turn which is about a mile away.

IMG_0925When we got back we were met by friends Bob and Jan who very kindly helped us work up the lock.

IMG_0930We have certainly been blessed with the amount of good friends we have made since we started life on Inca. Amongst them are Bob and Jan (nb Small Dreams) who have been brilliant during our time in Banbury and have invited us to their house on a couple of occasions plus giving Carolyn a day out in Oxford and a trip in their car to do a big shop at a local out of town supermarket. Fortunatley they plan to be in Rugby in a few weeks when we are there ,so we will meet up again before we head North for the Summer and they head South.

IMG_0932I think it’s probably a good job we are leaving Banbury as it looks like some Aliens have landed here.

IMG_0933First lock of the day and I grab the windlass and set the lock for Carolyn. I’m happy to jump over the gates even though my legs are not that long. Carolyn will not jump so she has to walk all the way around to open and close the gate on the other side. I need the exercise so it wont do me any harm unless I fall in.

IMG_0937We arrive at Little Bourton lock and it’s such a shame that the Lockkeepers cottage is empty. There is a sign that says that it is owned by boaters but with no way of getting to it by road and being a bit isolated, I think it will only be a matter of time before it succumbs to the elements .

IMG_0941In control (well sort of in control ,good job Her Ladyship doesen’t read the blog) and Carolyn brings Inca in to the last lock before Cropredy.

IMG_0951Passing up through the lock at Cropredy and this time we have no time to stop as we are on our way to meet up with friends at Braunston.

IMG_0954Heading up through the Claydon flight of five locks and the skies behind us start to turn rather grey . After another hours cruising we reached Fenny Compton and managed to moor up before the skies opened. We hope to be on the move again tomorrow but with low tempeartues forecast and the threat of the canal freezing over we will just have to wait and see what the morning brings.

                                                                                                                       Happy Days


  1. hi granddad I love the blog. granny didn't like like photo of you jumping over the lock gate I think so she was having a fit when it was just a photo xx

  2. Hi Curly . No need to worry about me jumping over the lock as I haven't fallen in ......yet !

  3. yeah it granny getting all worked up and also granny said she would like to see the day when you fall in

  4. I will never fall in ..famous last words !!

  5. Definitely famous last words Gary! There are only two sorts of boater - those who have and those who are waiting! However I do hope it is not from the top of a lock.☺

  6. Well we were moored in Fenny and didn't see you. I think you must have passed us (3 boats before the water point) while we were out walking Meg in the snow! Did you moor below the bridges? Whichever, you were long gone before we were on the move Saturday morning!

    1. Hi Debby , as usual I am a bit behind with the blog and that was several days ago. Shame we missed each other though. We've had a few good days cruising even though it was cold. Just killing time at the moment and waiting for the stoppages to end and then it's up North.

  7. Reading your blog is making me homesick for the cut, Gary! We are now on the countdown with less than 3 months to go until we are back on board - yippee!!!
    Don't like the picture of you stepping across the gap, don't like it when David does it either. I imagine the face-plant on the side of the lock or on the gate as you/he miss your footing and head for the water. And I just know that Carolyn and I would have to do the rescue. And then let you/David back on the boat wet, messy and feeling sorry for yourselves, if not badly injured! You're both getting too old for it, so stop - and do the additional walking, you lazy sod! (You know that is said with love and concern, eh?)

    1. Don't worry the 3 months will soon go. but you are better off there at the moment as its freezing here with it dropping to minus 6 some nights. As for the lock jumping I've never heard of anyone falling in while jumping across although I'm sure plenty have, Like you say it is just being lazy and most of the time we are not in a hurry. Anyway I will no doubt carry on doing it as will David I expect.