Set off from our mooring in Barlaston in cool breezy conditions, through the first lock of the day(Trentham Lock), past the unattractive Wedgewood factory opened in 1940.
|Mr Heron fishing in the reeds.|
|Stone mason's often left their mark on the lock wall.|
|First duckling of 2014 we have seen|
When we reached Stoke bottom lock the gates are already open, strange that doesn't usually happen. Here we met the self proclaimed " Rob the Lock" an unemployed young man who instead of sitting at home got a bike from the tip and with windlass in hand cycles from lock to lock preparing the way for us boaters.. commendable. He did the same for us at nine locks altogether.
|Bottle kilns remember the past amid the contemporary architecture on the Trent and Mersey|
|The man himself Jimmy Brindley at the start of the Caldon canal|
We turned off the Trent and Mersey and onto the Caldon Canal at Etruria Junction and used the service point.The Etruria Industrial Museum is just above the water point but was shut today. The canal swings through industrial and residential landscapes clinging to the side of a hill. The canal here is strewn with flotsam and the usual rubbish that urban sprawl can bring but we haven't seen it this bad before. The canal banks are unkempt and vegetation encroaches making the narrow canal even more challenging, a couple of the tighter turns need some reverse to help the bow get round.
|Instructions on how to use staircase locks on Caldon canal|
|Rob the lock and Sue|
He kindly helped us through the Caldon staircase lock and Planet Lock and then we said goodbye, we watched him cycling away happy with a few coins jingling in his pocket.
|More cold Bottle Kilns on the Caldon Canal|
|Moored at Milton just above the A53 on map below.|
PS .. I did get to a shop and buy a card before we set off.. and I will take my girl of 27 years for a celebratory fizzy water in The Miners Arms or The Foxley. :)