Sunday, 19 November 2017



After a good night on our mooring at Mancetter which was the site of Boudicca's last stand against the Romans we pulled pins at 08.40 and headed off towards Nuneaton.


Passing Hartshill and it would have been great to see it back in the heyday of the canals when this site would have been buzzing with canal activity.


Just past Springwood haven marina which we tend to avoid because of their high prices we passed this hill which a local boater told us was known as The Big Tit Hill ,although I haven't a clue why its so named. I was very surprised and impressed to see that someone had driven a car right up to the top of the Hill.


It was only when we got closer that we realised that it was just a silhouette of a car on top of the Hill.


This is probably the most photographed part of The North Oxford canal and there was no way that I wouldn't take a snap of the old telegraph post.

Its good to see that someone has been pulling out all of this scrap from the canal . I just hope its all removed before the Scroates chuck it back in to the canal again.


One day I will stop here and try some of Wing Fats food and will no doubt have a heart attack after eating it.


Passing Charity Dock and it changes every time we come through this way.


I've not a clue what any of it means but it certainly is entertaining as we cruise past.

As soon as we found out that our good friends Richard and Sharon were in the area we arranged to meet up at The Greyhound Pub at Hawkesbury Junction .


Not just one visit to The Greyhound but two ,just how lucky were we .Hopefully it wont be to long before we next meet up.

After a good time together we will now say good bye to Sharon and Rich as they head back to The South coast to go cruising on their vintage Scooters and we will head South towards Rugby and Braunston.

                                                                                                         Happy Days

Thursday, 9 November 2017

Living the dream

Some more amusing boat names .









                                                                                                                   Happy Days

Monday, 6 November 2017

UFO ( Unidentified FLOATING Object )


We pulled pins from our mooring at 09.10 and started our cruise to Hopwas and then onto the shopping moorings near Tamworth to re stock the boat with essential supplies.


Stopping off at the huge retail park before Fazeley junction I was well pleased to see that the 25% off 6 bottles of wine was running again at Sainsbury's. Needless to say I bought a lot more than 6 bottles . Just the ticket.


Approaching Fazeley junction and it’s right to Birmingham and left to Tamworth and the South . We turned left.


We passed this boat as we cruised through Tamworth . It was our friends Ray and Diane's boat until they recently sold it. I always liked the old tractor seats on the back and they are very comfortable to sit on.


All the way down the Coventry canal we have observed these yellow painted dots on both sides of every bridge on the towpath side. I did wonder if it was luminous paint to stop people bumping in to the bridge at night.


This was a first for us at the Atherstone flight of locks . With a good crew of Volunteers on duty we had help up the last 6 locks . There was even one lockie cutting grass with a push mower.


Atherstone top lock looking good as always and a credit to the volunteer lockkeepers that tend it.


Not a lot of progress here on the new development of the old Wilson and Stafford hat factory at Atherstone.


Anyone want a windmill ? . We had intended to moor at the top of the locks and have a Fish supper from the chippie there but unfortunately all the moorings were full so we carried on and picked up a mooring for the night at Mancetter.

                                                                                                    Happy Days

PS .You may be wondering what the UFO in the title is all about ? If you are easily offended please do not scroll down any further . I wasn't sure if I should put this on the blog but several of our friends have said do it for a laugh.


A bit further.






We thought we had seen everything we could have possibly seen as we have cruised for nearly 5 years on the Inland Canals and Rivers of the UK . But can you imagine what we thought when we saw this going floating by as we headed down the Coventry Canal. Of course with me being as pure as the driven snow I just haven't a clue what it is. If anyone has lost this item and is wondering where it is we last saw it buzzing its way towards the village of Hopwas.

Friday, 3 November 2017



Leaving Alrewas we made the short hop to Fradley junction where we stopped for a walk around . Its not a place we ever seem to spend much time in as it’s more of a tourist attraction with hundreds of people milling around on a sunny day.


We did spot this old car parked next to the pub at the junction.


Walking around the lake we did a bit of Sticking. We collect bags of dead fallen sticks/twigs and use them as Kindling to light the fire. Believe it or not I've actually seen some Boaters buying Kindling.


After a good walk around Fradley junction we pulled ropes from around bollards and headed up the last lock before the junction where we turned left onto The Coventry canal.


Passing Streethay wharf and its always a busy place with loads going on .

I bet all the other Horses are so jealous of the one with a multi-coloured coat. Carolyn said she thought he might be called Joseph.


One of the best weather vanes we have seen which just happened to be on top of an old farm house.


We moored up just before Hopwas and were soon joined by friends Tony and Jacqui on NB Timewarp who sell the brightest tiller pins and the tastiest fudge on the whole of the canal system.. Having not seen them for sometime it was good to have a catch up. We will spend a short time here before continuing our journey South.

                                                                                                 Happy Days

Sunday, 29 October 2017

Working class hero

A few more boat names for your perusal .


Summer ,Spring , Autumn or Winter its all good .


The most rusty boat name we have seen.


We see a few like this .


Don't know .


The great man himself.


We like this .


Never me .

                                                                                                    Happy Days

Tuesday, 24 October 2017



With Carolyn back in Devon for a couple of days me and the Lad Hamish have spent hours walking around the local area. The picture above is the lock landing to get off the river Trent and back onto the canal at Alrewas . Strange how an idiot angler should set up right in the middle of the landing . He even has his wife with him who is happily knitting away.


What a lovely looking Swan and how lucky was I to get that reflection .


I do need to get myself a book on Fungi especially one which tells me the safe ones to eat.We often find field Mushrooms which we pick and eat and they taste so much better than shop bought ones. These in the picture above look like they would be delicious but I don't think I could take a chance on eating them without knowing exactly what they are .


These look like they would be alright as well . No doubt someone out there that knows about them would tell me that I would be 6 feet under if I was to eat them.

With Carolyn back tomorrow we will stock Inca up from the village shops and continue our way down South for the Winter.

                                                                                                        Happy Days

Friday, 20 October 2017



After a couple of days at Alrewas it was good to see a coal boat which is something we haven't seen for a few months. As I have said before we always buy if we can from the coal boats as in the middle of Winter and with ice on the canal these boats are a life line for many us livaboard /continuous cruisers .This boat is called Auriga and is operated by Rick on his historic Narrowboat which was Built by Harland and Wolff in 1935. It’s the first time we have ever used Rick and full marks to him as he reversed all the way back to us from the winding hole in Alrewas to serve us with diesel and coal. Rick covers a wide area in the midlands and can be contacted on this number.

PHONE RICK ON 07962 013199

                                                                                                          Happy Days

Thursday, 19 October 2017



We pulled pins from Branston at 08.40 and were soon at Branston lock where I was well impressed with this fence. Being an ex mechanic its always good to see old engine parts being put to good use


The lock cottage at Branston lock does B&B and has to be a great place to stay if you enjoy canals.


Number one Lock wheeler Carolyn preparing the lock.


After a good cruise we dropped back down on the the river Trent for the one mile section between Wychnor and Alrewas  . This probably be the last bit of river we do for some time as it is all canals heading South after here.Passing the church we discovered that   "Wichnor (Wychnor), or Whichnour, is a scattered village, township and chapelry, forming the south end of Tatenhill parish, six and a half miles SW of Burton-upon-Trent and the same distance NE of Lichfield. The whole belongs to the lord of the manor, John Levett, Esq, of Wichnor Lodge, a handsome mansion, seated in a beautiful park of 300 acres, on the north bank of the Trent.
The river Trent here runs in two circuitous streams, crossed by a range of noble aqueducts, forming part of the canal, and by a stone bridge, of many arches and culverts, on the Lichfield and Burton road, which latter is the Icknield Street of the Romans. Near the bridge is an iron forge, established about 90 years ago. King James I visited Wichnor, on August 21st, 1621, and held a court at the hall, and he dined there again on August 19th, 1624. The corn mills here were burnt down in 1596." It’s another one of those places that you pass and never seem to go and explore , maybe one day.


Not a brilliant picture of a Kingfisher but I will endeavour to get a better one.


As we come off the short river section Carolyn locks us up in to the village of Alrewas. As you can see the river is on green boards which means it is safe to navigate .


After winding we picked up this 14 day mooring which is just a short stroll from the village . With a Chippie and a Chinese takeaway it will be a tough decision of what to have for dinner tonight .With Carolyn heading back down to Devon for a couple or three days or more and me having all I need here I will wait in this lovely village for her return.

                                                                                              Happy Days