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The 1982 Canal Holidays

2 Weeks in September

4. - Middlewich, Trent and Mersey Canal, Caldon Canal to Froghall, Trent and Mersey Canal, Staffs and Worcs Canal to Penkridge.

Tuesday 28th September - We left at about 8.30 and arrived at Harecastle Tunnel at 12.00. After a wait of an hour we went through in a convoy of 5. We let another boat go in front of us, so we were last. Once we were in Neil throttled back and let them all rev up / slow down in their own private fog of diesel fumes ( tunnel fan sucking fumes their way). After nice well paced non side hitting passage we stopped at Stoke for a service stop and got a pump-out, diesel and water. At 15.45 we turned left on to the Caldon Canal. At Ivy House Lift Bridge it was rush hour, so we created a nice traffic jam! We stopped for the night at Milton (17.30). Dinner on boat, then the Millrace pub afterwards.

Wednesday 29th September - Shoved off at 8.45. At Hazelhurst we carried on right and went along the Leek Arm as far as the wide before the tunnel. This had just been restored, but due to the canal needing dredging the other side it was still firmly shut. This was achieved by a steel mesh loosely bolted to the tunnel mouth. Neil investigated this and thought easy to remove! Julian declined the offer! Neil and Linda walked over the Tunnel and took some photo's. It certainly looked OK the other side and we could not see the reason for the tunnel still being shut. We retraced our steps to Hazelhurst, where we carried on down the Hazelhurst three locks and beyond to Cheddleton and Consall Forge. The river Churnet section below Oak Ford Meadow Lock was certainly fast! Arriving at Consall Forge (17.00) we decided that there was not enough time to get to Froghall (this happened a lot to us!) Linda and Neil walked down, all they way to Froghall Wharf. Dinner on boat and Black Lion pub pilgrimage in the evening. Sunny day.

Thursday 30th September - Left Consall Forge at 7.20 in heavy fog. Quite magical and deathly quiet! Julian took lots of arty photos! The one of the Bone Mill at Cheddleton still hands on a wall in his house, as a blown up print. By Hazelhurst the sun had burnt off most of fog. We escaped the Caldon Canal at 14.20, only to run into a lot of traffic, as we went south. We stopped at the start of Stone to try to find a restaurant, to no avail. We eventually stopped above Star Lock after having found a Fish and Chip shop. That night we stayed on the boat and had a really serious game of Risk. This is the war / army board game, that gets quite heated as people gang up on each other. Amazingly Linda won!

Friday 1st October - We left Stone latish - 9.30. This was just in time to get involved with everyone else leaving! We had heard good reports of the Farmhouse restaurant in Armitage. For this reason we overshot Great Hayward Junction and our route back to the boatyard at Penkridge. This was at 14.00. We moored virtually opposite the restaurant at 16.45. As soon as they opened we managed to get a booking. Neil and Linda went for a walk around the town. The Farmhouse Restaurant was visited between 19.00 and 22.00 - it was very good. (We think that this has become the Tom Cobleigh's Spode Cottage Restaurant, which is still meant to be good.) After this we retired back to the boat for a coffee and another game of Risk!

Saturday 2nd October - Shoved off at 8.00 after easily turning on the mooring. We stopped at Great Hayward Junction for water at11.30 and then turned left towards Penkridge. We arrived at Teddesley Boat Co at 14.45 and by 15.00 we were on our way south. 

 


Lock No 69. Salt works on our left. Trent and Mersey Canal.

* Lock No 67. Old salt pools to left of image. Trent and Mersey Canal.

Wheelock Flight, "Heartbreak Hill". Trent and Mersey Canal.

* Wheelock Flight. Locks No 64, from Bridge No151. (Trent and Mersey Canal.

Wheelock Flight. Locks No 63, looking up at Locks No 62. Malkin's Bank. Trent and Mersey Canal.

* Thurlwood Steel Lock, No 53 to right of picture. Trent and Mersey Canal.

Our mooring for the night, above Thurlwood Steel Lock, No 53. We are just opposite the Broughton Arms pub at Rode Heath. Trent and Mersey Canal.

* Looking up at Lock No 50 from Lock No 51. Lawton Treble Locks. Trent and Mersey Canal.

Lock No 47. Lawton Treble Locks. The disused lock to the left is out of action due to chamber walls bulging. They are held apart with bulks of timber and Acrows. This has been like that since at least 1972! Trent and Mersey Canal.

* Going up Locks 42. Red Bull Aqueduct behind. Macclesfield Canal swings off to right. Trent and Mersey Canal.

* Red Bull Junction. Macclesfield Canal off to left (It then swings over Trent and Mersey on Aqueduct. We have just come up Locks 41 in view. Trent and Mersey Canal.

* We have just gone under the second railway bridge and turnover bridge, just before the Harecastle Tunnel. Kidsgrove north portal. Trent and Mersey Canal.

* Harecastle Tunnels. Kidsgrove north portal. Trent and Mersey Canal.

Harecastle Tunnels. Kidsgrove north portal. Trent and Mersey Canal.

* Harecastle Tunnel. Kidsgrove north portal. Trent and Mersey Canal.

Harecastle Tunnels. South portal. Trent and Mersey Canal.

* Close up of paddle gear. Trent and Mersey Canal.

The start up the Caldon Canal. Etruria Staircase Locks Nos 1 and  2.

Planet Lock No 3. Caldon Canal.

Stockton Brook Flight. Lock No 7. Caldon Canal.

Stockton Brook Top Lock No 9. Caldon Canal.

* Linda and Neil. Stockton Brook Top Lock No 9 and Bridge No 26. Caldon Canal.

* Caldon Canal.

* Hazelhurst Junction (off to right) and Top Lock No 10. Caldon Canal.

* The still closed Leek Tunnel. Caldon Canal.

* Caldon Canal.

* One for the trainspotters! Pair of 25's on ballast train.

We come back and under Hazelhurst Aqueduct. Faded Snowcem era painting! Caldon Canal.

* Hazelhurst Locks. Caldon Canal.

* Cool Jules in control. Caldon Canal.

* We followed this tug for a few miles! Caldon Canal.

We have just come out of Oak Meadow Ford Lock No 16, onto the River Churnet. Caldon Canal.

* The Black Lion pub, Consall Forge. The rot has set in, new fence and picnic benches outside. Caldon Canal.

* Jackie.

Flint Mill Lock No 17, Linda and Neil's walk down to Froghall. Caldon Canal.

Thomas Bolton's copper works, still in full swing. Froghall.

Froghall Wharf. Caldon Canal.

* The Black Lion pub, in the misty morning before we left. Caldon Canal.

* Our misty morning mooring at the Lime Kiln Wharf, Consall Forge. Caldon Canal.

* Cheddleton Flint Mill. Julian and Jackie have a large blown up print of this as a picture. Caldon Canal.

Hazelhurst Locks. Caldon Canal.

Hazelhurst Locks. Caldon Canal.

Hazelhurst Top Lock No 10. Caldon Canal.

* Norton Green Lift Bridge No 21, just above Engine Lock. Caldon Canal.

* One of the Johnson Bros pottery carrying narrowboats, now sadly gone. (the pottery and the boat!) Caldon Canal.

* Going down Etruria Staircase locks, Nos 1 & 2. The scene below has now changed considerably! Caldon Canal.

* Etruria Staircase locks, Nos 1 & 2. Caldon Canal.

Going down Etruria Staircase locks, Nos 1 & 2. Caldon Canal.

Linda and Neil. On the Trent and Mersey, by the junction with the Caldon Canal. Trent and Mersey Canal.

* Hayward Junction with the Staffs and Worcs Canal. After our detour to Armitage, we came back down here to get back to Penkridge. Trent and Mersey Canal.

* The Farmhouse Restaurant (still there, now called the Tom Cobleigh's Spode Cottage Restaurant) at Armitage, well worth the afternoon detour along the Trent and Mersey Canal.

Julian having a tidy! Trent and Mersey Canal.

Packing up, back at Teddesley's yard. Staffs and Worcs Canal.

* Denotes a scanned Edgington print. Other's are scanned from Neil's faded Agfa slides. (probably a more accurate representation of grot weather on this Holiday!)

The 1982 Holidays continue...


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