Back cruising again, quickly before a) winter and b) another lockdown. I headed back up to Fradley Junction and turn east onto the Trent & Mersey canal, going through Alrewas and onto Barton Turns marina.
Enough people spotted and commented upon my sad-looking stove chimney in the prior (roof painting) video that I thought I had better come clean, do a confession, and explain why it’s looking so dented. This is that story.
A few weeks ago, I sanded down and touched up a load of rusty spots on my narrowboat’s roof but I didn’t then have the chance to finish the job and overcoat the whole thing in its entirety. I was also unsure what paint to use. Now, at last, I have had a few days of decent weather and got the whole thing done.
It’s not really a vlog because in this episode I’m just re-tracing my steps from the prior five cruising videos and didn’t really film as usual but I compiled this selection of clips to illustrate Stuff Of Interest – mostly to do with how amazingly busy the canals got after July 4th when lockdown restrictions were eased and people could use their boats again.
An episode in which, despite wind and rain, I boated on like a trooper to get from Otherton to Autherley, including the extremely narrow section that’s barely wide enough for one boat just before you get to Autherley.
Picking up from the previous video, I continue down the Staffs and Worcs canal from Acton Trussell, through Penkridge and moor outside Otherton Boat Haven. En route, I demonstrate how not to open a lock gate.
At the end of a very warm day in June, I set off from Shugborough to Great Haywood, turning there onto the Staffs & Worcester canal because from there down to Autherley is a section of canal I’ve never done before. I moored at Tixall Wide – beautiful – and then headed on around Stafford before being perplexed at what people have at the end of their gardens in Acton Trussell.
After almost drowning in the sea of rain falling onto Fradley, a new menace threatened my journey as the furious weather switched tack, turning instead to attack me with blazing rays of sun at a million degrees. Parched, weak and craving to escape the furnace I hauled myself to the back of the boat and just about had enough energy to propel the boat in search of shade, even as my last drops of water were exhausted. This is that traumatic tale.
This is the vlog version of the trip shown in real-time in the last video; I leave Kings Orchard Marina near Lichfield and head north up the Coventry canal to Fradley Junction where it rains a lot and I moor above the locks.