Friday, 28 July 2017

Chimney to Lechlade

Didn't have any rain during today's cruise, it was cloudy, mild but ever so windy. This made some of the tight meanders interesting, luckily we didn't meet any traffic in the wriggly bits. Levels were a bit low in a few of the meanders but good elsewhere.

Once we were moored up in Lechlade it rained and blew a hooley all afternoon so we never ventured outside. Summer seems to of ended or gone on a sabbatical, hopefully, it will come back soon....we even had the central heating on last night!

Grafton lock.

Buscot lock

St Johns lock 

Hitchhiking moth..   all the way to Lechlade

Red Admiral on lock gate
We watched a few episodes of Game of Thrones yesterday - I wondered if the 'Wall' to keep the 'Wildings' out might of got  Donald Fart thinking about his Mexican problem.

Thursday, 27 July 2017

Pinkhill to Chimney

I volunteered (was sent) to the butcher in Eynsham, we have used him before and his meat was very good. It's a walk of just under an hour to get there through some sheep fields and footpaths. After the showery morning we just had I took my rain coat in a day sack just in case. 
Pinkhill mooring

When I arrived the damn place was shut, I took some photographic evidence in case I got accused of spending the time in the Talbot Inn. Still it was a pleasant walk and the rain stayed away until I got back aboard.

Before we moved on this morning this chap came along to raise his pots.

I thought the pots were kept to the side of the channel but this lad winched a line of them up from the centre, he knew what he was doing as they all had a good catch in all of them 

New Bridge... well it was in the 13C when it had  51 arches now down to 12
 Local History of the bridge here

Shifford lock

We are moored on the opposite bank to the hamlet of Chimney

Tuesday, 25 July 2017

To the Thames

We left our weekend mooring in Thrupp at 07:30 to make our way down to the Thames 
Kidlington Green lock

Under Dukes bridge is Dukes lock 

Entering Dukes lock 
The lock paddle didn't appear to be working, the lock filled up via the leaky top gate and we were soon on our way and on to the Thames. Eynsham lock was manned by friendly staff as per usual, after filling the water tank above the lock we were on our way again.

Our favorite waterway, wide stretches of water gliding through some amazing landscapes, hardly any flow in the water even after all the rain we have experienced lately. 

 Pinkhill lock is next up I was glad to see it was manned by another jovial character. Sue enquired after the Pinkhill barnowl, the lockie had only seen him a couple of times in 12 months. We were to moor on the meadow above the lock so maybe we will get lucky.

Sue got her rod out I put my feet up and we were set for the afternoon.
Moored at Pinkhill

Wednesday, 19 July 2017

Dr Who

Temporary fix I hope 

At the services in Cropredy
I thought the 'Doctor' was a time lord not time lady.

Red Kite

Aynho weir lock

Mondays  mooring

Moored up by 11am and spent the afternoon on the bank watching hay being baled in the field below. It took three men till 18:00 to complete the whole field 

Next day we were away quite early for a short cruise to Lower Heyford

Exiting Somerton Deep lock.

Sue is very happy this heavy bridge has been electrified.

This machine was having a photoshoot by Enslow bridge, I wasn't sure what model obviously a BSA, with the high exhaust probably a dirt bike, good old google revealed it's a BSA Spitfire scrambler. Bet it hasn't seen the mud in a while.

Sunday, 16 July 2017

White Horse

King Sutton is a popular stop for us on this canal and for many others but on this occasion we had the bank to ourselves for most of our time here, we stayed for the weekend.

KS although close to the canal has no convenient route to it, the river Cherwell blocks access. As it was Friday I fancied a walk into the village for a glass of ale in the White Horse which is located across the village green from the church with landmark spire.

That's FL moored and the spire in the distance
To get there it's a stroll back along the canal to Twyford bridge  and along the road to the pub about a two mile detour. There is a footpath through fields from the road but today the farmer was working the field with two tractors so I stuck to tarmac.

Chiltern railway serves the village with routes to London Birmingham and Oxford.

Just the ticket

Monday, 10 July 2017

Ashby St Ledgers

The canal has been the busiest we have ever seen it.

We have had a few good days sitting on the canal bank not doing a lot. Our friends Gordon & Dot joined us for a convivial weekend of outdoor inactivity including bbq, barn owl watching, laughter and the odd ale/vino.

On a baking hot day the old seadog and I decided to walk into Ashby St. Ledger -  not the best time to go for a 10 mile yomp along the Jurassic way to visit this quiet picturesque thatched village.

It was a gentle undulating stroll along farm tracks and through fields of wheat until we were standing at the edge of Northamptonshire Heights. Looking east from here it is flat plains all the way to the Ural mountains, because of this the BBC chose the nearby Borough Hill for it's World Service radio mast.

The village is very pretty, immaculately well kept (bet they have a committee for everything) devoid of humans when we were there - but I felt eyes were on the two strangers having a nose around from behind lace curtains. The thatching on the buildings including the village hall looked recent.

The main street.

Village pub was shut.

Medieval church of the Blessed Virgin Mary and St Leodegarius

The manor house
It was here that Robert Gatsby and Guy Fawkes met with fellow conspirators to plan the gunpowder plot.

Crossing the canal in Braunston
The heat was getting to us so we stopped for something refrigerated at the Plough on the way back to the boats which were moored in the countryside  1.5 miles outside of Braunston.
This lot had the right idea.