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Index

Tour 2003

Index

1 - Sawley to Drakeholes - River Trent, Tidal River Trent and Chesterfield Canal.

Sat 14th June 2003

It was a late night before, packing the car and getting rather "P"ed off as Orange GPRS was found to be broken. Julian T said it had been off for a day and Orange were less than helpful.
We left home at 08:10 and had uneventful trip up to Sawley. Saw the site of the rather nasty fatal accident a few days before. Arrived at Sawley at 10:05, there was no sign of the fire damage to the marina building, seeing as we were fuelled up, we did not go to office.
The bloody batteries were just flat enough to not start engine (a lot to do with the naff plasticy start isolator switch being in the cabin.) The raw water pump for the toilet would also not work. After using the emergency switch that parallels up the bowthruster battery and a few wiring mods, the engine fired up OK. The raw water pump was temporarily wired to another circuit.
Martin Wilson, Will Chapman and Martin Clarke all arrived at the same time. Martin C had a half walk from Long Eaton station, seeing as he still had Neil's old mobile number.
We set off at 12:20.The rather grey morning at Sawley had by now brightened up and remained nice and sunny for the rest of the day. Beeston Lock (14:20) needed a bit of "surgery" one of the bottom gate paddles slipped badly in the gearbox. Neil soon had this up using the old tried and tested insertion of a bit of stick. The lock was left in the correct state of the "red" paddles up top and bottom, to give more of a feed to the Beeston / Nottingham Canal section, which by-passes the River Trent through Nottingham.
Nottingham visitor moorings were rather full, so we moored, as usual, slightly below Sainsbury's. This involved just being able to get the bow in, with the stern rather stuck out. Next followed a bit of complicated bike / car shuffling. Martin W had his leisurely mountain bike ride back to Sawley, where he managed to follow the tow path all the way. He then returned in his Fiesta to Nottingham to give Linda a lift back to Sawley to pick up the Passat. Linda then came back, to stay for the night out in Nottingham. During this procedure Martin W mislaid his fone and there was a panic as we looked about for it. Linda, of course eventually found it.
Shopping was done for the main expendable items in Sainsbury's and that evening we went out (as usual!) to the Cafe Rouge. Only complaint here was that the mussels shells were of a fair size, but with not much mussel in
them!

Sunday 15th June 2003

A hot start to the day at 07:10. No problems with engine start. The wicked Captain insisted breaky waited until we were off the Nottingham Canal and on the Trent. Out of Meadow Lane Lock at 07:50, into a sea of rowers............Ian Clarke could have scored several hundred points!
We exited Holme Lock at 08:30, self operated. Stoke Lock (08:50) had a few large cruisers apparently waiting, as we passed they asked when the locks opened, we replied they were open all the time if you could be bothered to get out your Bogmaster Key! They did not bother coming in with us. The locky arrived as we were about to drop the water and then took over operation, out at 09:15.
Out of Hazleford Lock (11:20), having caught up with another two large cruisers, who came round form London the easy way! We went straight through Newark, passing King's Marina at 13:10. Both Newark and Nether had lockies.........but then I suppose this was a Sunday in season.
We arrived at Cromwell at 14:05. A pair of Sagar mini-luxe barges had just come in, one was Elsa "B". We had customary chat with the Cromwell Locky, who remembered us from last year, locking us out at 14.20. He was worried for Roger Clarke in steam NB "Swallow", who should have arrived from Torksey around 13:15. we said we would keep a look out for him.
Soon after we departed we spotted "Swallow" chuffing along and tried to exchange quick pleasantries with Roger, got a few good chuffing piccies. Being a Sunday, many waterski boats were about in their designated areas......we just ploughed on a straight course through them. Arrival at Torksey was at 17:10, after a slow winding. The locky thought we were a full length narrowboat and had got stuck across the cut, but we said we knew we could do it and were not trying to damage his floaty pontoon.
We had found out by fone that the Lockside restaurant was fully booked and could not raise the White Swan. After a chat with the locky he remarked that the White Swan had not opened all day and recommended the Hume Arms in Torksey village. We managed a booking for 19:00.
The White Swan was OK ish, but only I hand pumped beer on. 6.25 carvery was alright  in the meat and potato dept, but the greens were rather stewed. As becomes the norm it was early to bed, although we did not need to leave Torksey that early the next morning. The walk back from Torksey was highlighted by a particularly fine specimen of a flattened hedgehog and "smoking moles"......well there were a few mole hills with cigarette ends inserted into them!

Monday 16th June 2003

After a rare beaky before starting off we shoved off at 10:45, some 10 minutes before Neil's calculated ideal. This departure was hastened by a fone call to Sue, the West Stockwith Locky, who said that "Guinevere", a 60ft Colecraft trad had already left (some 20 minutes before) and she would like us to try to get Stockwith together. NB "Sirius" had left for Keadby some 35 minutes before we left. The flood seemed still quite strong (it was high Springs 8.8M Hull), but we still managed to plough along at over 4MPH. Not long after Torksey Railway bridges we over took Guinevere and just before Knaith we overtook Sirius! It was at that point the ebb kicked in and maintaining 2200 revs we managed 9.1MPH going through Gainsborough (12:30).
We arrived at West Stockwith at 13:10 - not exactly a 10 out of 10, as we did "pivot" slightly on the downstream wing wall. After 5 mins "Sirius" chugged past bound for Keadby and Sue said that "Guinevere" would be about 15 mins. Their entrance also involved a bit of pivoting the side round, but at least it was a very controlled approach and we did not fear for our stern gear!
We got out of Stockwith Lock at 13:45, but were soon following up at VERY slow small GRP cruiser. Not long after this John Nutall of BW Leeds foned to say that the leak plugging at Turnerwood Basin had failed and that boats would now not be allowed up above Shireoaks until the official opening on 26th June. Neil then decided to abort going up to the top of the Chesterfield and foned Sue at Stockwith to book ourselves out the next day at 11:30, down to Keadby. Neil also foned the BW Worksop roving lengthsman and he confirmed that the leak would take until next Monday at the earliest - still too late to make our HNC Standedge Booking.
The small cruiser took so long going up the two Misterton Locks, that we had time to have our lunch outside the remains of the "Packet Inn", which was in the last throws of being demolished to be replaced by housing. Soon after the cruiser was seen coming back, he had given up, due to "The weed"! 
That night we arrived at Drakeholes at 17:10, winded and pulled the boat back to the end of the empty Visitor Moorings. The White Swan was still excellent  - Timmy Taylors Landlord ale - really on form and an excellent steak in nice surroundings.

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Ready for the off! Our temporary berth at Sawley Marina. Linda on roof and Martin Wilson, the first crew member to arrive.

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Approaching Sawley Locks. River Trent Navigation. Martin Wilson and Will Chapman look back.

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 Sawley Locks. River Trent Navigation.

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 Sawley Locks. River Trent Navigation.

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   Beeston Lock and weir. River Trent Navigation.

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  Beeston Lock, Beeston Cut. River Trent Navigation.

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 Castle Lock, Nottingham Canal. River Trent Navigation.

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 Meadow Lane Lock, Nottingham Canal. River Trent Navigation.

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 Back out onto the Trent above Nottingham. Looking back to Trent Bridge beyond and entrance to Meadow Lane Lock on the right. River Trent Navigation.

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 Leaving Holme Lock. River Trent Navigation.

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 Colwick, below Holme Lock. River Trent Navigation.

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 Radcliffe On Trent Railway Bridge. River Trent Navigation.

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 Stoke Lock. Stoke Bardolph. River Trent Navigation.

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  Stoke Lock. Stoke Bardolph. River Trent Navigation.

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 Hazelford Lock. River Trent Navigation.

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 Hazelford Lock.  River Trent Navigation.

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 Averham Weir. River Trent Navigation.

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 River Devon section through Newark. River Trent Navigation.

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 Newark Lock. River Trent Navigation.

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 Newark Castle and bridge. River Devon, Newark. River Trent Navigation.

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 Newark Bridge. River Trent Navigation.

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 Newark. The Waterway Office and below the bridge Visitor Moorings. River Trent Navigation.

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 Towpath bridge and A46 Bridge just before Nether Newark Lock. River Trent Navigation.

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 Nether Newark Lock. River Trent Navigation.

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 Nether Newark Lock. River Trent Navigation.

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 Muskham Ferry pub at Muskham ferry. River Trent Navigation.

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 Leaving Cromwell Lock onto the River Trent Tideway. River Trent Navigation.

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Leaving Cromwell Lock onto the River Trent Tideway. Tidal River Trent.

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High Marnham Power Station. Tidal River Trent.

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Waterski club at High Marnham. Fledborough railway Viaduct in the distance. Tidal River Trent.

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BW 7 Hour Visitor Moorings and Dunham Toll Bridge. Tidal River Trent.

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The entrance to Torksey Lock Cut is just beyond the pumping station. Tidal River Trent.

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Torksey Lock and Cut. Overnight Visitor moorings to wait tide on pontoons. Tidal River Trent.

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Torksey Lock. Fosdyke Navigation.

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Torksey Lock. Fosdyke Navigation.

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Torksey Lock. The original Great Northern Railway Company life ring. Fosdyke Navigation.

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Torksey Lock. Fosdyke Navigation.

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The Hume Arms at Torksey.

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Recently flattened Hedgehog.

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Smoking Moles?

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The disused Torksey Railway Bridge. Torksey Castle on the right bank. Tidal River Trent.

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Knaith Hall. Tidal River Trent.

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Cottam Power Station. Tidal River Trent.

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Railway Bridge before Gainsborough. Tidal River Trent.

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Gainsborough. Tidal River Trent.

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Gainsborough. Tidal River Trent.

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Gainsborough Bridge. Tidal River Trent.

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The new floating visitor mooring pontoon in Gainsborough. Tidal River Trent.

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West Stockwith Tidal Lock up to the Chesterfield Canal. Tidal River Trent.

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West Stockwith Lock onto the Chesterfield Canal. Looking out to the Tidal River Trent. NB Sirus is heading down to Keadby.

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The remains of "The Packet Inn". Chesterfield Canal.

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The White Swan at Drakeholes. Chesterfield Canal.

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Drakeholes. Chesterfield Canal.

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Drakeholes. Chesterfield Canal.

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The White Swan at Drakeholes. Chesterfield Canal.

The Tour Continues...


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