Boatwif Blog

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South west for winter…

Cleddau is on an Autumn cruise. It’s a one-way trip: she’s off to spend the winter at Aqueduct Marina (near Nantwich) where she will be sand blasted (ouch!) and repainted. She’s going early while the weather is reasonable and before winter lock closures affect the Macclesfield Canal. As the crows (or the many Canada geese) fly, the route is a north east to south west diagonal across Cheshire – except that via canal there’s a lot of south, a fair...

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A cruise to a party…

Those who know him well recognise that the Captain is a Planner: give him a project to develop or routes for a long-distance cruise to coordinate and he is a happy chap… 2017 has seen various plans conceived and executed: the cruise of 433 miles and 235 locks from mid-March to late June, the Nearly 70 family gathering and celebratory party in South Pembrokeshire in July, as well as several shorter distance Cleddau exploits    – but in mid-September one...

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Made it!

Given that such a great deal of planning had gone into July’s Nearly party in Pembrokeshire and that another birthday celebration lies ahead later in the month, what to do, where to be and how to mark the actual decade-changing day had not featured on the planning schedule. First though, on September the first, boat and crew needed to head north back to the Macclesfield Canal. Harecastle Tunnel – a sixth (and final) transit this year.    While lead boat...

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Pottery pottering

Cleddau’s trip along the western end of the Caldon Canal had been to allow a trip to the Emma Bridgewater Pottery.      It’s there in Hanley, side on to the canal. Visitors from the canal first need to negotiate Stoke-on-Trent’s fast traffic as it speeds along the dead straight Lichfield Street.. This year The Cheshire One has developed a fondness for pottery painting: this was to be her fourth experience after visits to The Kiln in Bedford, to a...

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Double Trouble

Bosley Lock 12  – MIlton – Etruria: 24½ miles, 9 locks, 1 tunnel  After three nights moored below Bosley Locks it was time to move off on Bank Holiday Monday.       Extra crew in the person of The Cheshire One was due to be picked up at Scholar Green later in the day. It was a lovely morning; there was the painted cow     and there was the looming hulk of the Cloud over to the left.    ...

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Having numerous locks on us…

Knowing where the flags were stored on Cleddau wasn’t the problem, although suspending them above the boat wasn’t entirely easy…    However, by  late afternoon on Friday August 25th Cleddau was ‘dressed overall’,     ready to signify to walkers, boaters and cyclists that something was going on. The Something was HALOUS, the annual event organised by Macclesfield Canal Society during which all twelve locks of the Bosley flight are manned by volunteer lock operators.   On Saturday morning volunteers assembled for...

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Tales of the Unexpected

When it’s just a question of turning a boat round to retrace your route you don’t expect there to be much different to see or to reflect upon – but you might be wrong… On the outbound trip to Aqueduct Marina (near Nantwich, south Cheshire) a brilliant mooring spot had been sighted, a length of mooring with wide-reaching views overlooking the pretty village of Church Minshull. ‘Moor there on Friday once we’ve finished at the marina,’ was the thought. Keen...

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Outbound on a mission…

Cleddau and crew are afloat on a mission, the first of several… First off it was head southbound down the Macclesfield Canal, then north west down (yes, down Heartbreak Hill) on the Trent and Mersey Canal and then south west across the Middlewich Arm. Outbound the trip has involved 42 miles and 46 locks, from Higher Poynton to Church Minshull. The mission?  To discuss Project Repaint at Aqueduct Marina, near Nantwich… But for the Cleddau crew to reach their cruise...

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Sand, sea, stairs – cake!

Periodically the Captain and Boatwif get Sea Fever * when they “must go down to the seas again, to the lonely sea and the sky…” For them a trip out west is essential, to gaze again upon the Pembrokeshire coastline,    to see the sea sparkle and surge, to inhale the salt air, to sniff the heather and coastal thrift, to pound along the sands,    to marvel at thousand year old castles,     medieval streets and the very...

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Crew Training

Crew Training is back! (This post was first posted in early July. The Boatwif blog underwent some techno interference in mid-July but normal service has now been resumed). Higher Poynton – Longport Wharf – Higher Poynton, 53½ miles, 26 locks, 1 tunnel twice There’s been a four day crew training sortie on Cleddau. Since finishing his school year Cal Guy Snr had had a busy week: pre-season Marching Band Camp until Wednesday midday, a drive north to Los Angeles late afternoon,...

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