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The Tuesday Night Club on Tour


Tour 2003


19 - Tewitfield to Parbold, including another passage down to Glasson Dock and into Preston. Lancaster Canal, Lancaster Canal Glasson Dock Branch, Ribble Link, Savick Brook, Tidal River Ribble, Tidal River Douglas, Leeds and Liverpool Canal Rufford branch and Leeds and Liverpool Canal.

Wednesday 9th July (continued)

Arrival back at the boat from our Northern Reaches walk was at 17:00 and at 17:50 we shoved off, to give Carnforth the benefit of our custom.............rather difficult this, as due to our 19:45 arrival, the place seemed shut for food after 08:00!!! We had a good chat with the Scully's on NB Dragonfly, Mel seemed a bit of character! Managed some reasonable grub and a pint in the Poachers Lodge.

Thursday 10th July 2003

Rotten rainy day, whiled away by visiting Lal' Ratty (Ravenglass and Eskdale narrow gauge railway), by mainline Cumbrian coast railway. 
We left Carnforth at 17:50 bound for Hest Bank. The rain had by now stopped - a brilliant clear evening. We moored at same spot in Hest Bank - 19:00. We had a really good talk with an old Lanky boating couple, The bloke was 85 and was very involved with Lancaster Canal Trust - sorry we did not get their names. 
That night the "Seaview" Chinese takeaway was tried out. Certainly OK...........other than meal for two came with rather too many chucked in extra dishes!!!

Friday 11th July 2003

Rather late start after Neil cremated some "slightly" out of date sausages, for a mid morning brunch. Eventually tore ourselves away from Hest Bank at 11:15, bound the short trip to Lancaster, for the Saturday "arrivals". 
At bridge 108, Neil dropped Martin C off for a wander down to the river bank for a really good photo session of the Lune Aqueduct. Unfortunately Neil got rather involved with an impromptu weed hatch session and Martin missed Earnest on the aqueduct. 
We arrived back at Lancaster at exactly the same spot as last time! That evening we wandered into town quite early and found the previously "closed due to flood" Wetherspoon's open for business. As usual an on form pint and the now usual "two meals for 5.75 quid" deal. Martin, of course finished of his meal with the famous Wetherspoon chocolate cheesecake. 
After the pub we had a wander up to the Williamson Memorial view point - nice view of Lune Aqueduct. Rather strange woodland noises in woods below monument - warm up for a Grimm's Fairy Tales evening. 
We then walked back down to the Lune waterfront, to look at the new footbridge and converted to flats wharf buildings - quite a nice development. 
We were expecting a somewhat noisy night in Lancaster, due to the close proximity of the now "TNC Banned" Water Witch pub...............but it ended up a complete reversal...............boater rage! When we returned there was a tatty cruiser in front of us, with two oldish lads fishing by it. We thought nothing of this and went inside for a coffee.
After about half an hour there was a lot of shouting, then banging on the cruiser.......Neil then retreats to the back of Earnest to get a mooring pin close to hand.........but upon looking at the commotion, it was noted that the two fisher lads were on the cruiser (borrowed dad's boat??) and were now involved in a rather violent argument, with much boat thumping and swearing going on between the lad holed up inside and the rather irate one outside. 
Eventually the lines were cast off and the boat whizzed off.............then back and forwards a few time at full tilt, afterwards the lads tied up beyond the BW lawnmower craft, to continue their argument in private. The Water Witch pub packs up around 23:00 and all was quiet for the rest of the night, apart from some bouts of singing girlies, returning home from the Lancaster clubs.

Saturday 12th July 2003

As it was a nice sunny day and we were surprisingly near the bank, Neil decided to give Earnest it's yearly "Autoglym". Greg Chapman was first to arrive of the new TNC On Tour recruits. This was about 12:00. Greg had decided to come in his car, leave it in a Lancaster car park, then bus / train back for it at the end of his week. 
Martin and Greg took advantage of having a car and did a big re-provisioning exercise at Sainsbury's, which was a fair way from the canal, near the river. Greg also did a taxi service for Molly, when she arrived at the station - 14:30.
By this time Neil had finished his anti-social practices and Earnest looked ready for the National.............apart from the rusty mangled looking swan neck. 
After brief introductions we shoved off at 15:35 - destination Glasson Dock and another trip down the little used but VERY nice Glasson Dock Branch. At the junction Neil got out the Linda's new Brompton foldy-cycle and lock wheeled down the 6 original Lanky style locks - large fixed windlasses and scissor gate paddles, all locked up with BW padlocks.
The roving BW locky was surprised, but glad we were going down. He said that the locals hardly ever bother and before the Ribble Link there was only around one boat a month using the locks. Arrival at the basin was at 19:55 and we tied up on the mostly empty Long Term Moorings, to the right of the dock as you arrive down. 
Greg managed to find the owners of the narrow beam Dutch Barge - "Sulaskar" -  Carole and Stuart Samson are the people that do the "First Mate" waterways guides, that Greg said are the best for local info. 
The "Victoria" was our chosen venue again. Not too full, nice pint of Thwaites Lancaster Bomber and OK food. Afterwards we walked up to the viewing point again, this time with the ship's bins. 
Nice clear evening, many ships and the gas platforms visible out in Morecambe Bay. A small barge, eventually identified as the "Auldyn River" started up the Lune, going pretty fast on the evening flood tide. Neil legged it back down to the docks, to get a couple of good shots of it slewing sideways into the dock entrance, virtually loosing it against the flood. After almost narrowboat corrections the barge corrected it's position and then stormed into port, through the outer single lock gate. After a few blasts of smoky power the little barge was moored up ready to discharge it's cargo...........another magical small port moment.

Sunday 13th July 2003

Another blazingly hot, cloudless morning. We missed the 10:00 opening of "The Lock Keepers Rest" as we left at 09:50. The Brompton was got out again for Greg to play with. 
Above the first lock we passed a small NB - "Night Owl", with a terrified local crew that had just done their first up hill lock. They had a small disagreement with another ascending local boater and the BW locky, so were waiting for some off-Lanky "Lock experts" to help them out.................any way eventually we caught up with the other local boat - NB "Prime Time". 
TNC soon spread harmony amongst the natives and we all managed the rest of the locks together. At the top of the flight (12:15) we parted company, with NB "Prime Time" following us down the Lanky mainline. Neil got bored, so continued his boaty re-refurbishments. 
The tiller arm and swan neck was attacked with the angle grinder. Coarse, then finer production paper was used to gradually restore the very RTBC tiller arm. Arrival at Garstang Visitor Moorings was at 16:05. Before this we filled with water and most people had a shower, on the Garstang Sanitary station, for around an hour (slow tap). 
After arrival Neil decided to "do" the rudder bearing and swan neck, so both items were removed. After a bit of power wire brushing, the swan neck - collar re-welded area was tidied up with a bit of metal filler and the removed items cleaned up and red oxide primed. 
During proceedings Trevor Burridge arrived, via train and bus, who then led a mini mutiny, where all crew left for the pub - "Th' Old Tithe Barn". Trevor returned with a pint of Thwaites Bomber for Neil, who by that time was in steering gear re-assembly mode. Trevor also reported that the pub food was on until 21:00. 
Eventually after Neil had cleared up and Trevor showered, we sat down in the pub and forced a meal order...................the answer to this from bar staff was that they were completely out of starters and main courses, but we could order a sweet!! 
Off we went again and after a guided tour of Garstang, we eventually forced a decision - Trevor's initial one - and got a Chinese takeaway from the "Chop Suey House - Garstang" Molly did the honours and was glad to report that they won the Evening Post award for the best local takeaway in...................1988! Jolly meal back on the boat as we sweltered with all possible boat orifice open.

Monday 14th July 2003

Yet another brilliant morning. Trevor survived his night on the single dinette bed....only one of the wayward base cushions had escaped in the night. Greg lightly cooked a fry-up breaky on the move - started off at 08:30. Neil did undercoat on tiller / rudder bearing, while on the move. We filled up with diesel at Moon's Bridge Marina - did not get the price but is was in excess of 40p/L. We past the Ribble Link at 13:45 and carried on down to Preston, unaware of what we would find at the end, having been advised NOT to moor in the holding basin overnight.
At 14:20 we arrived at the end, having drifted into the rushy and silted up end of the cut-off route into Preston, after having past the private - Arleen Hire Cruisers Ashton Basin. 
We could have moored here, but it would have cost us. The moorings in the silted up stub beyond, did not look too salubrious, so we decided to wind in the basin entrance and go back to the out of town Sanitary Station Visitor Moorings - 15:00. 
The Sanitary Station moorings looked fine, a local boater had his boat on the end of the moorings, doing some work close to home and said that these moorings were OK, with a free shower and a lock-in gate (cuff key) after hours. I think virtually everybody took advantage of the free BW shower. 
Earnest was filled with water and a provisioning party found the nearby Booth's supermarket. A BBQ was chosen as the evening meal, as we decided to stay locked in. A very pleasant evening was had by all, nice quiet secure moorings and a beautiful evening weatherwise.

Tuesday 15th July 2003

The evening before Earnest refused to stop, it was an old fault - the stop solenoid links had vibrated themselves loose again. When Neil did the manual stop, down in the engine compartment he noticed that one of the two rear - none business end engine mounts was knackered, the threaded section at the top, used to adjust the engine in and up or down direction, was sheared off, just below the under engine mount lock nut. 
There was not much could be done about this at the moment and must have occurred on the Mersey thrash, while escaping over the sands to the Garston Channel. At this time Neil did note a new noise, while in the boat cabin, but at this time put it down to the changing tidal effect. 
Steve at Beta was contacted and a new set ordered, to come up with the next crew change. At 07:45 we shoved off from Preston and arrived at the Ribble Link holding basin (08:45), just as another "down" Link boat was arriving.
"Meandrine" was a Stowe Hill Trad and reversed into the top staircase lock (08:45), to avoid the nasty turn in the basin below, to do the dog leg to get through the existing road and rail bridge. Neil decided to follow suit and did the rare perfect wind and reverse. 
With plenty of crew we were soon down the link and waited on the final pontoon above the rotating sea lock. During conversation with the Day's we found that they had a parrot on board. "Jasmine" was an Amazon, had reared by the owners from an orphan chick they were given while out in South America. 
The Day's told us a funny story, concerning their parrot. One of it's favourite phrases, when it knew it's owners were leaving was "Help! help!, let me out". While moored up at the end of the canal, you can guess what happened on their return from a walk...........a local do gooder came up to them an said that they had been reported to the NSPCC for leaving a young child, locked up and unattended for a couple of hours.............! 
Eventually, following a slight inrush of water, we were given the green light, by the BW crew on the sea lock and we were all off (12:15). Owing to late arrivals mooring up to us we were, as was getting the norm, the last out. 
It was interesting to watch the other boats come out of Savick Brook, into the full force of the flood tide coming up the Ribble. All of the other boats seemed to struggle getting stuck into the flood and swung round and went backwards for a while before getting stuck into the flood. 
We managed a somewhat sharper turn (but still missing the sand banks at entrance to Savick Brook) and soon dispatched the other boats going down the Tidal Ribble. By the time we got down to Asland Lamp, entrance to Tidal River Douglas, the tide was still flooding so after the wide turn (13:10) we still had the flood, nearly all the way up to Tarleton. 
Arrival was at 13:55, somewhat ahead of the other four boats, so Harry's crew locked us up singularly and we were soon on our way up the Rufford Branch (14:05) 
Owing to an earlier arrival than Neil had planned, it was decided to go further than Buscough Bridge and push onto Parbold. The junction was past at 17:30 and at 18:50 we arrived at Parbold, just past the bridge. A quick reccy of pubs still doing food revealed that "The Stocks Tavern" was to be our venue for the evening. 
Neil was somewhat late for the pub, just making the last food order, seeing as during the Lathom Locks, at the top of the Rufford Branch, the main alternator fan belt (WATER PUMP as well!) had decided to mostly disintegrate and throw it's self from the pulley. 
After Neil eventually alerted our presently rather deaf Martin C to the red light and warning beeper and the fact that there was no engine cooling going on, the still intact ring of mangled rubber was levered back over the pulleys with a large screwdriver. 
That evening Neil fitted one of the two spare belts. During this operation it was noted that now TWO engine mount threaded sections had sheared!................

Filling in the missing bits! - Coming down from Carnforth. Lancaster Canal.

Thwaite End Bridge No 127. Lancaster Canal.

Going under Barkers Bridge No 126, one can see the A6 trunk road that follows the canal by this section. Lancaster Canal.

Looking back at Barkers Bridge No 126. Lancaster Canal.

Entering Bolton-Le-Sands. Lancaster Canal.

Bolton Church Bridge No 122. Lancaster Canal.

Passing through Bolton-Le-Sands below Bolton Church Bridge No 122. Lancaster Canal.

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Coming down to the Lune Aqueduct, here is Beaumont Turnpike Bridge No 110. Lancaster Canal.

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The last bridge before the Lune Aqueduct - Halton Road Bridge No 108. Lancaster Canal.

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The Lune Aqueduct, from the River Lune.

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Just downstream of Dolphin Lane Bridge No 105. Lancaster Canal.

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Coming into Lancaster. Lancaster Canal.

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The Williamson Memorial view point. Lancaster.

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Looking down at the Lune Aqueduct from the Williamson Memorial view point. Lancaster.

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The River Lune in Lancaster.

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The River Lune in Lancaster.

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The River Lune in Lancaster.

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Leaving Lancaster with some new crew, Greg Chapman and Molly Mockford. Lancaster Canal.

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Nice sunset over Glasson Basin. Lancaster Canal Glasson Dock Branch.

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Sunset over Heysham Nuclear Power Station.

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The barge "Auldyn River" flys up the Lune on the flood tide.

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The barge "Auldyn River" comes into the outer harbour at Glasson Dock.

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The barge "Auldyn River" has a burst of power to get the stern round. Glasson Dock.

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The barge "Auldyn River" gets ready to moor up. Glasson Dock.

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Th' Owd Tithebarn pub at Garstang - don't believe them about how long they serve food! Lancaster Canal.

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Marshall's Bridge No 27, above Salwick. Lancaster Canal.

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Just before the Ribble Link is the B6241 Bridge No 16 A. Lancaster Canal.

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Entrance to the Ribble Link. Lancaster Canal.

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Going down into Preston. Cottam Mill Bridge No 16. Lancaster Canal.

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Cadley Road Bridge No 12. Preston. Lancaster Canal.

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Cadley Road Bridge No 12. Preston. Lancaster Canal.

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Coming into Preston. Lancaster Canal.

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Blackpool Road Bridge No 11 A. Preston. Lancaster Canal.

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Looking back at Blackpool Road Bridge No 11 A. Preston. Lancaster Canal.

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Looking back at Stokes Road Bridge No 11. Preston. Lancaster Canal.

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Entrance into Ashton Basin under towpath bridge. Preston. Lancaster Canal.

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Ashton Basin. Preston. Lancaster Canal.

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The end is now just a few hundred yards from Ashton Basin. Preston. Lancaster Canal.

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The end! Preston. Lancaster Canal.

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Looking back from the end at Preston. Lancaster Canal.

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Coming back out from Preston. Lancaster Canal.

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Looking back at Ashton Basin - we have company! - an Arlen Hire boat sets out. Preston. Lancaster Canal.

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Cadley "services", just safely out of Preston. Lancaster Canal.

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Visitor moorings at Cadley Services. Lancaster Canal.

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Leaving Preston. Hollinghead Fold Bridge No 14. Lancaster Canal.

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Leaving Preston. Ingol Ashes Bridge No 14. Lancaster Canal.

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Leaving Preston, approaching the Ribble Link. Cottam Mill Bridge No 16. Lancaster Canal.

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Entering the Ribble Link holding basin. Lancaster Canal.

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Sharing Lock No 6 with NB Meandrine. Ribble Link.

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Following NB Meandrine through the silty semi tidal section of Savick Brook. Ribble Link.

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The sewer outlet / pipe bridge...........and you want to take a barge through here? We hit the bottom a good few times. Semi tidal section of Savick Brook. Ribble Link.

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Help!........the tides out! Semi tidal section of Savick Brook. Ribble Link.

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The masses waiting above Half tide lock No 1. Semi tidal section of Savick Brook. Ribble Link.

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Off down Savick Brook against the flood.

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Off down Savick Brook against the flood.

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Out on the Tidal River Ribble.

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We decide to go first again! Tidal River Ribble.

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Looking back towards Preston. Will the engine mounts hold up? least with a thrash now, we will still get the flood up the Tidal River Douglas.

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Back round Asland Lamp we ride the flood nearly all the way to Tarleton. Tidal River Douglas.

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Tarleton, just after high water. Tidal River Douglas.

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Entering Tarleton at slack water. Tidal River Douglas.

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Harry Mayor locks us up at Tarleton. Rufford Branch of the Leeds and Liverpool Canal.

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L&L Short Boat Dee at Rufford. Rufford Branch of the Leeds and Liverpool Canal.

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Neil at work again with the scaffold pole on the totally knackered Marsh Meadow Swing Bridge No 6. Rufford Branch of the Leeds and Liverpool Canal.

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Glovers Swing Bridge No 33. Leeds and Liverpool Canal.

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Leeds and Liverpool Canal.

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Ring-o-Bells Bridge No 34. Leeds and Liverpool Canal.

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Ring-o-Bells pub. Leeds and Liverpool Canal.

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Ring-o-Bells. Pipe Bridge and Moss Bridge No 33 in the distance. Leeds and Liverpool Canal.

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Pipe Bridge and Moss Bridge No 33. Leeds and Liverpool Canal.

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Spencer's swing Bridge No 36. Leeds and Liverpool Canal.

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Underbridge before Parbold. Leeds and Liverpool Canal.

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In about a weeks time the Parbold breach was to occur somewhere about here! Leeds and Liverpool Canal.

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Parbold Bridge No 37. Leeds and Liverpool Canal.

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Our mooring at Parbold. Leeds and Liverpool Canal.

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Parbold Bridge No 37. Leeds and Liverpool Canal.

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The Stocks Tavern at Parbold - a pleasant little pub.

The Tour Continues...

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