Did get a full day in. Pretty much.
Had to stop at Streethay Marina in Lichfield. Also empty some rubbish in Tamworth.
Otherwise, it was a straight day. 9am to 6pm.
Fradley locks volunteers
Even though there were volunteers, he decided to let me go through the top lock on my own. Just sort of watched, set the next lock and opened the next gate down. Left me to do the paddles and gates. Just watched and ate his butties.
After I got down, he made his excuses about not wanting to move because his gear was at that lock. I looked around. I didn’t see any gear. Besides, a CRT would never be stupid enough to leave anything anywhere where the public can get it. It was pretty clear he just couldn’t be arsed.
What’s the point in working as a CRT volunteer if you’re just going to watch the boaters and sit there and eat?
If you want evidence, he’s on the timelapse video at the end of the story.
You can see him open the paddle and just walk off.
Shortly after my experience with the lazy CRT volunteer, I emerged through the lightest swingbridge on the CRT network, (you can work it with one hand apparently), onto the Coventry canal.
This took me down through the outskirts of Lichfield, Streethay, where I stopped off at the Marina.
I haven’t filled up with diesel since I was in Thorn Marina.
Because it is Saturday, I’m served by youths. Who seem rather nice, not really bothered, but nice.
There’s a number of boats gathering by the time I leave.
I have a look around the Marina chandlers shop. They have a comprehensive selection of ‘one-time’ parts, such as engineering parts, chimney parts, different fittings, flanges and pieces.
I ask they guy if they’re on the internet. He says “we’re getting on there”. A few of the parts I’ve sourced on the internet are available here, in stock.
I wonder round the shop for a little while, whilst a guy from Kings Bromley Marina pushes in front of me in the queue.
They guy in the shop alerts me to this, to his credit. I say I’m not really bothered. I carry on looking around the shop.
After about 10 minutes or so, I go out to check how my re-fuelling operation is going.
Turns out, the boat that’s just been pumped out and re-fuelled’s owner has gone missing.
We wait around for 10 minutes or so until he emerges.
I let the other guy go in front whilst I chat to his wife.
We talk about the boat that was stolen from Kings Bromley Marina in the summer.
It’s an interesting talk. I think he feels a bit guilty from stealing my place in the queue.
After chatting to the guy doing the pump-out, I managed to get a discount price of £94 for 115 litres of fuel and a pump out.
Coventry canal traffic
Is pretty thin, compared to the Trent and Mersey.
I stop for a bit of lunch and a cup of tea just outside Streethay.
From here, it’s no locks until Glascote, Tamworth.
Tamworth by barge
There are so many houses here backing onto the canal. Each one has a different idea about what they want to do with the garden.
It’s like an illuminated Santa display at Christmas.
Some of them are garish and rude, some are unkempt, some prim and proper, some meadow, some sheds.
There’s probably about 3 miles of them. Urban gardens. Like a garden show, from behind, if you’re into that.
Very interesting, and I have to take it slow because there are boats moored up most of the way.
Haven’t had the chance to get the camera out for most of the day.
The featured picture at the head of the article is coming through the woods at Kings Bromley.