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Tour 2003

Index

34 - Froghall to Dimmingsdale. Caldon Canal, Trent and Mersey Canal and Staffs and Worcs Canal.

Wednesday 6th August 2003

Bit of a hack day really, early start at 06:10 meant we missed ALL the out bound Caldon traffic, exiting at Eturia at 13:30. A good run with no problems, a BLOODY hot day. Near Stoke we passed a VERY badly stemmed up Challenger boat, who seemed to be interested in catching up with us at the electric swing bridge, then getting past us........no hope, Linda legged it up to the next bridge and got on there, after letting them through.
Going down the Stoke Flight we got behind a rather slow Black Prince boat, but this soon went up the bank a few bridges onwards and we got past it on this deep and straight section of the Trent and Mersey. 
We eventually moored up, in the shade, above Star Lock in Stone, just as Captain Beeky appeared in the car park opposite (18:15) OK meal in the Dolce Vita Italian, in the old lock cottage opposite the Star Inn. Rather blowy night, but still warm, so we managed an outside table until we finished our meal in the dark. This venue was somewhat pricey, for food that did seem to have mainly arrived "in a truck"..........hardly up to "La Rosetta" standard in Brentford............

Thursday 7th August 2003

Captain Beeky did his obligatory bit of TNC On Tour crewing .............working Star Lock for the then solo Neil at 05:50 that morning, before going back to work in Bilston.
We were trying to catch up with Roger and Margaret Millin, who were taking Albion down the Staffs and Worcs. Bratch was the rather optimistic stop for that night. Good run down the rest of the Trent and Mersey to Great Haywood Junction (09:35), but picked up some light traffic after this. Most of the traffic on the Staffs and Worcs, seemed to be coming up, so many locks were straight in. 
We stopped at good old Teddesley for diesel - 29.5p/L. 18:30 saw us pass Autherley Junction, then 18:50 pass Aldersley Junction. Although Wombourne looked welcoming, we ploughed on, grinding to a halt - Linda's Spag Bol ready - on the quiet offside Visitor Moorings above Dimmingsdale Lock.
We had heard on the towpath telegraph that the Bratch had been bedlam the day before, due to a 24 hour emergency stoppage, we hoped this will be smoothly operating the next day.

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Hazelhurst Aqueduct...............or is it Hazlehurst! The O^S map calls the area Hazelhurst, but the aqueduct proclaims it is Hazlehurst. Caldon Canal.

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Bridge No 37 and Hazelhurst Bottom Lock No 12. Caldon Canal.

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Remains of  potteries on the Johnson's site. Hanley. Caldon Canal.

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Approaching Bridge No 9. Hanley. Caldon Canal.

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One of the ornate wrought iron bridges in Hanley Park. Caldon Canal.

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Planet Lock No 3 and Stoke Road Bridge No 4. Hanley. Caldon Canal.

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Eturia Staircase Locks No 1 and 2. Hanley. Caldon Canal.

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Eturia Junction. Summit Lock No 40. We have just swung round from the Caldon Canal. on the left and are now heading south on the Trent and Mersey Canal.

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Looking back at Shelton New Road Bridge No 115. Stoke-on-Trent. Trent and Mersey Canal.

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Meaford Top Lock No 34. Trent and Mersey Canal.

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Looking down from Meaford Top Lock No 43 to Meaford Road Lock No 33 and Bridge No 97. Trent and Mersey Canal.

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Looking back up at Meaford Road Lock No 33. Trent and Mersey Canal.

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Meaford House Lock No 32 and Turnover Bridge No 97. Trent and Mersey Canal.

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Meaford Bottom Lock No 31. Trent and Mersey Canal.

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Looking up at Meaford House Lock No 32 from Meaford Bottom Lock No 31. Trent and Mersey Canal.

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Newcastle Road Lock No 29. Stone. Trent and Mersey Canal.

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Stone. The old, now refurbished Joules Brewery warehouse and Stone Boatbuilding. Trent and Mersey Canal.

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The moorings above Star Lock No 27. Stone. Trent and Mersey Canal.

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We ended up mooring above Star Lock No 27. Stone. Trent and Mersey Canal.

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La Doce Vita Italian restaurant, in the lock cottage at Star Lock No 27. Stone. Trent and Mersey Canal.

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Andrew Goodland cranks Star Lock No 27 for us, before his early departure to work. Stone. Trent and Mersey Canal.

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Aston Lock No 26. Trent and Mersey Canal.

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Leaving Sandon Lock No 25 and Sandon Bridge No 83. Trent and Mersey Canal.

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A decoy fisherman!

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Malcolm Braine's yard at Weston upon Trent. Trent and Mersey Canal.

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Weston Lock No 24 and Brinepit Bridge No 79. Trent and Mersey Canal.

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Great Hayward Junction. We are turning right onto the Staffs and Worcs Canal. Trent and Mersey Canal.

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Just beyond Great Hayward Junction is the River Trent Aqueduct. Staffs and Worcs Canal.

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 Staffs and Worcs Canal.

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Tixall Wide. Staffs and Worcs Canal.

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Tixall Wide. Staffs and Worcs Canal.

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Old Hill Bridge No 107 and Tixall Lock No 43. Staffs and Worcs Canal.

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Neil appears to be catching up with his breakfast! Tixall Lock No 43. Staffs and Worcs Canal.

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Tixall Lock No 43. Staffs and Worcs Canal.

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Milford Turnover Bridge No 105. Staffs and Worcs Canal.

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Deptmore Lock No 42. Staffs and Worcs Canal.

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Shutt Hill Bridge No 91 and  Shutt Hill Lock No 41. Staffs and Worcs Canal.

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Looking back at Teddesley Park Bridge No 89. Staffs and Worcs Canal.

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Penkridge Bridge Bridge No 86, Penkridge Lock No 38 and The Boat pub. Staffs and Worcs Canal.

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Penkridge Lock No 38. Staffs and Worcs Canal.

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The Cross Keys pub and Filance Bridge No 84. Penkridge. Staffs and Worcs Canal.

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Gailey Bridge No 79 and Gailey Lock No 32. Neil has just been dropped off to work the lock. Staffs and Worcs Canal.

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Gailey Bridge No 79 and Gailey Lock No 32. Staffs and Worcs Canal.

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Gailey Lock No 32. Staffs and Worcs Canal.

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Hatherton Junction. The Hatherton Branch use to go off to the left. Staffs and Worcs Canal.

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Looking up the Hatherton Branch, now used by Calf Heath Marina for moorings. The first lock is used as a dry dock. Staffs and Worcs Canal.

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Looking back at Hatherton Junction. Staffs and Worcs Canal.

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The low rock cuttings at Ford Houses. Fosters Bridge No 68 in the distance. Staffs and Worcs Canal.

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Autherley Junction. The Shropshire Union Canal starts to the right under the bridge. Staffs and Worcs Canal.

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Looking back at Autherley Junction. Blaydon Road Bridge No 66 beyond. Staffs and Worcs Canal.

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Oxley Moor Boatyard and Oxley Moor Bridge No 65. Staffs and Worcs Canal.

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Looking back at Oxley railway bridge and the water main aqueducts. Staffs and Worcs Canal.

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Aldersley Towpath Bridge No 64. Aldersley Junction with the BCN just beyond. Staffs and Worcs Canal.

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Aldersley Junction. The start of the BCN Wolverhampton 21 flight of locks. Staffs and Worcs Canal.

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Tunstall Water Bridge No 63 and Hordern Road Bridge No 62 A. Staffs and Worcs Canal.

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The old Double Pennant hire boat base used to be in this arm. Tettenhall. Staffs and Worcs Canal.

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Compton Lock No 31. Staffs and Worcs Canal.

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Compton Lock No 31. Staffs and Worcs Canal.

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Compton Lock No 31. Staffs and Worcs Canal.

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Lime Kiln Narrowboats and Compton Bridge No 59. Staffs and Worcs Canal.

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Bridge 59 Italian Restaurant and Compton Bridge No 59. Staffs and Worcs Canal.

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Wightwick Mill Lock No 30 and Wightwick Mill Bridge No 58. Staffs and Worcs Canal.

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Wightwick Lock No 29. Staffs and Worcs Canal.

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Wightwick Lock No 29. Staffs and Worcs Canal.

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Wightwick Lock Bridge No 57 and Wightwick Lock No 29. Staffs and Worcs Canal.

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The old Mermaid hire cruiser base, below Wightwick Bridge No 56. Staffs and Worcs Canal.

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Looking back at Wightwick Bridge No 56. Staffs and Worcs Canal.

The Tour Continues...


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