Tuesday, 7 April 2015

Harecastle tunnel.

It was a misty start to the day as we untied from the bank and made our way to the Harecastle tunnel. We booked in with the tunnel keeper, he informed us it was about an hours wait, we topped up the water tank while we waited.  No one else was waiting when it was time to make our passage through, having the tunnel to ourselves helped speed us through, we shaved a good 10 minutes of the last time we passed through.

The tunnel we used is the engineer Thomas Telfords tunnel built in three years, completed in 1827. An earlier tunnel which took 11 years to complete was built by James Brindley in 1777 but eventually closed in 1914 because of mining subsidence. These tunnels are 1 and 3/4 mile long, a fantastic feat of engineering for these pre victorian men.

Misty start

Brindley's defunct tunnel

Telfords tunnel, southern portal.

Light at the end of the tunnel.

Once through the tunnel we descended 12 locks with a short stop at Red Bull for dumpages. It was great being back out in the countryside again on such a warm sunny day, we are now moored at Thurlwood.
Lovely spring afternoon

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