Vlog 96: Scarecastle

It’s finally time for me to face me greatest canal tunnel fear and go through the (almost 3,000 yard long) Harecastle tunnel. It’s wide enough only for one boat and has partially collapsed in the middle so headroom is extremely limited and all boats are checked before they enter (and counted in and out by dedicated tunnel-keepers). Here goes!

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  1. Hi Ralph
    I’m moored at Stretton and saw your lovely boat but want to ask you about a boat which was your neighbour, the one painted in Pullman livery. Do you know who painted it please, I want something similar :)
    Best regards
    N.B. Rose
    Ex hotelboat

  2. Ralph. NB Miner Bill

    Hi mate …. I hate that tunnel !
    My first ever single handed jaunt was Atherstone to Manchester, and I returned via the Shropshire Union simply because I did not want to go back through it!
    I still don’t like it.

    Anyway just thought I’d give you a tip on leaving the boat when you need to shut gates….
    Stop the boat with the stern JUST clear of the gate closing point, shuffle yourself along the gunwale and back up the lock landing stage, close gates, and come back down again.
    Unless it’s really windy the boat will stay within the confines and shelter of the lock walls for long enough for you to have time.

    See you soon mate… somewhere!

    • Hi. Yes, I did consider that method of popping back to shut the gates but I was uncomfortable not tying the boat even with it in the “corridor” and even for the minute or so it takes – sod’s law says it would blow away if I try it. I don’t think it’s too much to ask for the canals to have bollards on both sides, if there are paired locks!

  3. My grandfather moved to Canada during the great wars when he was in the military. I’ve always wanted to go back to England to explore. But I have never had the time or finances to pull it off. Watching your Vlogs give me a real sense of what I am missing. I’m not interested in city life so cruising the canals with you brings me great pleasure. I Love houseboating as I do it occasionally for a week here and there. But it doesn’t compare to your boat, scenery or lifestyle. So you bring me great pleasure with your videos. Keep up the great work. Cheerio ;)

  4. Great vlog – out of sync now but @tidyboiler nagged me silly to watch prior to supper & The Archers!!! Well worth it !

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