Friday, 16 February 2018

Saltisford (and another mini cruise)

I seemed to spend all day on Wednesday traipsing to Warwick and back.  The first visit was to Sainsbury’s but the other times were to get my phone repaired.  The phone had stopped accepting a charge so the charging port needed replacing.  It couldn’t be done whilst I waited so that’s why I had to make two further trips into town; once to drop it off and then another to pick it up.

In the end I went up a fourth time!  When I got home after picking up the phone, one of my daughters called and, after about 10 seconds the line started buzzing and she couldn’t hear me.  I tried a few more people as a test and they were the same, so it was back into Warwick to tell the repair shop that they had mucked something up.  This time they fixed it whilst I waited and it all seems to be OK for the moment 😊

We’ve not had a TV signal since leaving Lapworth over two weeks ago, and it hasn’t been a problem as we can always use the internet to watch or download TV programs if we want to.  We have found, though, that since we have been at Saltisford junction that our internet signal seems to disappear at about six in the evening until nine the following morning.  We’ve not encountered this anywhere else on the canal system and find it most strange.

To get over the intermittent internet signal, I decided, on Thursday morning, to move the boat back to below Hatton bottom lock.  It required quite a lengthy reverse and I was glad there were no boats on the move as I had to keep stopping and correcting my direction of travel.  I blame the wind of course 😉

Moored back at the bottom lock (again!)

The boat moored behind us appears to be on a permanent mooring.  This is an unusual place to find a single permanent mooring as it is alongside the towpath at the back of houses.  The tall pipe, aerial thing sticking up from its stern deck is housing an electrical feed from the house alongside where it is moored.  

Karen went back to work on Thursday but was home again by four and went straight to bed; obviously not fully recovered yet

Later on, on Thursday I went to check up on how the works were progressing at lock #27.  Three more stanking planks had been added to the stank below the bottom gates:

I’m not sure why they had been added as there would have to be a terrific amount of water for it to come up that high.  Also the ends weren’t secured in anything so water would just run round them.  I’ll have to go back when the workers are there and ask them the reason.

The picture above shows the new bottom gates in the closed position.  The balance beams and walkways haven’t been put on yet.  It looks like the old ones are going to be put back as they are both laying alongside the lock still.

One of the balance beams

At the top end of the lock, a stank had been put in place ready for removing the top gates for repair:

Stanking planks in place leaving the top gates clear for removal

The ground paddles have been left open in order to drain the water and pipes had also been placed in the water and connected to a pump driven by a large generator.  They will pump the remaining water out when they start working on the top gates. 

The blue box is the generator.  The ground paddle is lifted showing the hole through which the water runs when filling the lock.

This next picture shows the paddle winding gear in the up position – the rod with a white top above the white cylinder is fully extended.

The lock ladders on this lock are also being replaced as they are not up to standard apparently! 
There is one lock ladder in each wall of the lock. One can be seen in the picture above.  We use the ladders when climbing back onto the boat once the lock is empty and ready for us to move the boat out.

We'll have been here two weeks by the weekend so we'll be off to Leam next.  It's only three miles and through the two locks at Cape so it'll be an easy cruise.  Once down the two locks we will be at the lowest point of the canal; from then on all the locks climb uphill on the Grand Union until the other side of Braunston.

Publishing this blog entry proves that the internet is OK here! 


  1. The extra planks are probably to make the walkway more secure, ie harder to fall into the lock ?

    1. Good thinking but they have been removed again this morning. Mind you, they have put rock salt on the walkway :)