Day 41 – Newquay to Lands End Day 40 – Tavistock to Newquay Day 39 – Exeter to Tavistock Bonnie Revival Hungerford -> Newbury -> Aldermaston BMC 1800 waterpump Downton Abbey (Highclere Castle) and Watership Down Hungerford Marsh -> Hungerford Froxfield -> Hungerford Marsh To Ham Bird action in Oak Hill World Press Freedom Index Oak Hill – Dun Aqueduct Oak Hill Little Bedwyn -> Oak Hill 5 popular destinations for travelling where disease is still rife Chased by sheep – Little Bedwyn Taking a long walk…. Great Bedwyn -> Little Bedwyn Sunday on the canal Crofton Meadows -> Great Bedwyn Wolf Hall -> Crofton Meadows Brimslade -> Wolf Hall My first Zander Wotton Rivers -> Brimslade Most visited sites on the internet ABS LP110 Leisure battery for a narrowboat Burbage wharf Mooring in Wootton Rivers, Wiltshire Sunday in Pewsey Measuring the draft Looking for moorings around Wootton River/Clench New button fitted! Milkhouse Water, Wiltshire Now in Pewsey, CRT mooring rules Get into Stonehenge free Flaperon from MH370; no story – 1 month on Skyrim V Connect/’sign in’ to ‘open network’ wifi on Windows 10 My personal Strava movie – 2016 The biggest hacks of 2016 – A year in hacking US vs Bullying China Russian Google and Reddit misdirects skewing Google Analytics First complaint Winter electricity usage Devizes The fight for freedom, Not In My Back Yard Donald Trump – Puppet masters, Parody to victory, and the march to nationalism US Presidential elections 2016 Taking a narrowboat on the Thames Giles Wood – Melksham Bonny Journey List of dead bankers 2016 – conspiracy update Day 38 – Taunton to Exeter Day 37 – Seend Park to Taunton Day 36 – Seend Park to Bradford on Avon Day 49 – Caen Hill Marina to Seend Park Bleeding a BMC 1800 marine engine 3 Reasons you won’t ever tell me 9/11 was not an inside job Day 48 – Caen Hill Locks Day 47 – Devizes – Caen Hill Locks Day 47 – Honey Street to Devizes Day 46 – Great Bedwyn to Honey Street Day 45 – Newbury to Great Bedwyn Day 43 – Theale to Newbury Day 42 – Goring to Theale Day 41 – Oxford to Goring Day 40 – Aynho to Oxford Day 39 – Claydon to Aynho Day 38 – Flecknoe to Claydon Day 37 – Ansty to Flecknoe Day 36 – Alvecote to Ansty Day 35 – Kings Bromley to Alvecote Day 34 – Little Haywood to Kings Bromley News Winter moorings Day 33 – Stone to Little Haywood Day 32 – Kidsgrove to Stone Day 31 – Wheelock to Kidsgrove Cask ale week – Use your mobile to claim free beer Chimney repairs Day 30 – Marston to Wheelock Day 29 – Dunham Massey to Marston Viewranger mapping app Day 28 – Plank Lane to Dunham Massey Day 27 – Crooke to Plank Lane The anti-Blair cometh…. Day 26 – Rufford to Crooke Day 25 – Morecambe to Rufford – 1,000th post eva! Six companies are about to merge into the biggest farm-business oligopoly in history Day 25 – Hawes to Morecambe Day 24 – Durham to Hawes Day 23 – Newcastle to Durham Day 22 – Norham to Newcastle Day 21 – Edinburgh to Norham Day 20 – Dundee to Edinburgh Day 19 – Aberdeen to Dundee Day 18 – Buckie to Aberdeen Day 17 – Inverness to Buckie Day 16 – Helmsdale to Inverness
Adopt a lock

Day 46 – Great Bedwyn to Honey Street

Michael Tyler

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Woke up in the morning to find the boat on it’s side.

During the night, the pound, (the expanse of water between locks), had emptied out. I can see from my bed that one side of the boat is much lower than the other.

This makes me kind of uneasy, as I don’t know how much water has gone from under the boat.

As I look out of the window, it doesn’t look to be a lot. Still, if I leave it, it will get worse, especially if people come and start using the locks.

Quickly put some clothes on, do an engine check and start the engine.

I can push the stern out from the bank, but not the bow, which seems lodged.

I shove it in reverse, kicking up the mud and gravel and shit, and waggle the tiller a little, which has the right effect.

As I drift backwards, the front end follows, and I drift backward to the safety of the bollards of Potters Lock.

It looks like the pound had emptied by around a foot or so whilst I was asleep.

Moored at the locks, which you’re not supposed to do. Had a bit to eat and got going before anything else could go wrong.

Later on down the pound, a wide beam has run aground on the shallow water.

Earlier on the following day, some large canoeists had been leaving all the bottom paddles up and gates open, now all the pounds are empty.

16 Miles 16 locks

There’re more sets of locks on this Kennet than any other canal.

They’re all double.

Apart from that, they only have one sluice or ‘paddle’, this means that unlike the other double locks on the CRT system, they fill very slowly.

Most double locks have a ‘ground paddle’, which opens and lets water in from the bottom of the lock, and a ‘gate paddle’ that lets water in at the top of the gate, water level.

This has the net effect of creating an even filling of the lock.

These locks are much slower. Painfully slow.

So, I hang around.

Crofton pumping station
Crofton pumping station

Crofton Locks and Pumping Station

Adopt a lock
Adopt a lock

During the day, I encounter the highest part of the Kennet and Avon lock, it’s called Crofton.

There’s a large pumping station that used to supply water to the top of the locks and regulate the system. Reading the OS guide to Southern canals instructs me that there’s some unique engineering featured inside.

It’s open to the public on Sundays. As it’s Tuesday when I pass, I have to make do with a photo.

The CRT volunteers here are particularly good, and I don’t have to get off the boat for 7 locks, not like Fradley Junction where they just open the paddles then walk off.

10/10 for Crofton then.

The Kennet and Avon canal

Was restored entirely by volunteers in 1975. There’s a plaque halfway up the Crofton locks dedicated to the men and women who helped in the restoration, (above).

Bruce Tunnel
Bruce Tunnel

This is the Bruce Tunnel, named after it’s engineer Thomas Bruce Earl. There’re two railway lines intersecting above it, one of them still operational and Savernake Forest.

After Crofton

The canal begins it’s steady descent towards Bath…

I pass a couple of Tors, and a White Horse to the right.

img_1931

Honey Street

It’s getting late by the time I get into Honey Street.

The sun has gone down, it’s dark.

I can’t find any moorings in the village, and the reception is so bad, I can’t check my map to see where they might be on Google.

All the way through the village, the bank is very soft and shallow. Not suitable, or even visible to get out and secure the boat. Eventually, I see somewhere with the light of the street-lights that has a re-enforced concrete bank, generally an indication that the water will be deeper.

I pull up, it turns out to be part of a disused industrial instalment, now converted to someone’s back garden. Never mind, I’m well and truly parked. It’s dark.

I leave the boat and go to meet old school friend, Daniel.

We go to the Red Lion in Avebury, I have a mixed grill which is rather nice.

Day 46 – Map

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One comment:

  1. Wow…..adventures…..good that you met Daniel and had a nice supper!!..So remember making way in the dark ….not so good….especially in the rain……people do not seem to realise how important it is to follow the canal guidelines regarding locks….that’s how things can go wrong on the waterways. It is a strange feeling waking up with the boat grounded……ahhhhhh….you wonder if she has taken water…..remember that too….getting stuck in the mud can be very difficult….glad it all worked out OK and you had an enjoyable evening….look forward t the next instalment! xx

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