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Index

Tours 2000, BCN, Severn Estuary, K&A and River Wey

9 - Saturday 8th July - Wombourne. Staffs and Worcs Canal to Aldersley Junction. Wolverhampton 21 locks to Wolverhampton. 

Weather, short showers on and off all day. We eventually left our moorings just below Bridge 45 on the Staffs and Worcs at 10.30, after a full breakfast. Neil attempted a straightening of one of the prop blades with a pair of mole grips, as one had a sharp cut out of it. This strange cut seemed to have occurred while the blade was stationary. We can only conclude that it happened during the Dudley Tunnel tow. The result was a great improvement. The stern gland was also adjusted, the greaser refilled, the bilges drained with a rag and finally the 3KW fan heater directed down the rear "dry" bilge hole to get rid of the final dampness. It is believed that the water entered the dry bilge via the toilet tank pipe hole through the bulkhead, which is set a bit low. We were obviously a bit enthusiastic about filling the engine compartment bilges with water for tunnel ballast! We set off behind a slow boat but was surprised to find that it had already started up the Bratch Locks, when we arrived there at 10.50. We had our quickest assent for a long time of Bratch (well since BW deemed it necessary to have a lock keeper!), coming out of the top lock at 11.15. We stopped for lunch (13.50) at the "Oddfellows" Bank's pub, in Compton, stopping just before Br59. This pub was a Beefeater kind of place, but annoyed Julian E and Colin, as it was particularly dark. Neil could not understand why Julian E did not want to go over the road to The Swan. 
We shoved off again at 13.05 and turned right at Aldersley Junction onto the BCN (Wolverhampton 21 Locks) again, at 16.25. Peter Brown, followed shortly by Peter Wright, joined us having walked down the towpath from Wolverhampton station. This was around L15. Peter B informed us that there was a Water Travel boat in front, which had run into difficulties as someone (yobs?) had drained a few pounds. This must have been a short while ago, as we passed another boat just above Lock No20, maybe it was them. Julian E was steering and he had to cope with a serious amount of water coming down the by-weirs. Peter B went up to the top to let some water down. Colin and Peter W set the locks and helped out the boat in front. After a brief spell of fast running we caught them up and had to wait for water to come down. We eventually arrived at the top at 18.35. We moored right after the lock as it was Saturday night! Julian E soon left to go home That night it was raining again as we walked into town, and went to virtually the first Balti House we found. "John's" Balti house was not up to much.


Bratch Locks. We could not resist a photo opportunity here! Staffs and Worcs Canal.

Bratch Locks. Staffs and Worcs Canal.

Bratch Locks. Staffs and Worcs Canal.

Bratch Locks. Changed from the white painted version we used to know. The 1990's version is covered with "knick Knacks!" Staffs and Worcs Canal.

Bratch Locks. Staffs and Worcs Canal.

Awbridge Lock. We included this, for as you can see from the paddle gear, it really is a BCN lock!  Staffs and Worcs Canal.

Just turning at Aldersley Junction. Staffs and Worcs Canal.

We are nosed up to the Wolverhampton 21 Bottom Lock No21. Aldersley Junction. BCN Main Line.

The new "water conservation key" / Leeds and Liverpool handcuff key locks to the bottom gate paddles. Bottom lock.  Wolverhampton 21 locks. BCN Main Line.

Lock No 20. Wolverhampton 21 locks. BCN Main Line.

Dunstall Park Bridge and Lock No19. Wolverhampton 21 locks. BCN Main Line.

Dunstall Park Bridge and Lock No19. Wolverhampton 21 locks. BCN Main Line.

Fleeting glimpse of Wolverhampton Racecourse. Wolverhampton 21 locks. BCN Main Line.

Lock No18. Wolverhampton 21 locks. BCN Main Line.

Looking back at Lock No18. Wolverhampton 21 locks. BCN Main Line.

Lock No17. Wolverhampton 21 locks. BCN Main Line.

Looking back down from Lock No16. Wolverhampton 21 locks. BCN Main Line.

Lock No 16 and Gorsebrook Bridge. Peter Brown has just arrived and is telling Neil tales of woe about the lack of water situation further up. Peter goes ahead and "sorts it!" Wolverhampton 21 locks. BCN Main Line.

Telephoto shot looking back at Lock No 16. Wolverhampton 21 locks. BCN Main Line.

Gorsebrook Bridge and Lock No15 beyond. Wolverhampton 21 locks. BCN Main Line.

Lock No15. Peter Wright is just arriving. Wolverhampton 21 locks. BCN Main Line.

Capping stone at Lock No15. Wolverhampton 21 locks. BCN Main Line.

Lock No15. Peter Wright is explaining the water situation. Wolverhampton 21 locks. BCN Main Line.

Telephoto shot looking up at Locks No 13 and 12. Wolverhampton 21 locks. BCN Main Line.

Looking up at Locks No13 and 12 from Lock No 14. Wolverhampton 21 locks. BCN Main Line.

Looking down from Lock No13. Wolverhampton 21 locks. BCN Main Line.

Lock No 12. Wolverhampton 21 locks. BCN Main Line.

Colin and serious graffiti. Beside Lock No 11. Wolverhampton 21 locks. BCN Main Line.

Colin features in the graffiti, could he be the author! Beside Lock No 11. Wolverhampton 21 locks. BCN Main Line.

Lock No 11. Looking up at Fox's Lane Bridge, Lock No 10 and the incinerator "landmark". Wolverhampton 21 locks. BCN Main Line.

The "sacred waters" of the BCN! Wolverhampton 21 locks. BCN Main Line.

Lock No 10, looking up at Lock No 9. Wolverhampton 21 locks. BCN Main Line.

Looking back at Lock No 10 and Fox's Bridge. Wolverhampton 21 locks. BCN Main Line.

Jordan's Bridge and Lock No 8. Wolverhampton 21 locks. BCN Main Line.

Looking up at Locks No 7 and 6 from Lock No 8. Wolverhampton 21 locks. BCN Main Line.

Looking up at Lock No 6 from Lock No 7. Wolverhampton 21 locks. BCN Main Line.

Looking down from Lock No7 at Lock No 8 and the incinerator plant. Wolverhampton 21 locks. BCN Main Line.

The subterranean boarding passage at Lock No 5 and Cannock Road Bridge. Wolverhampton 21 locks. BCN Main Line.

Lock No 4 and railway bridge. Just beyond is the landmark Carvers builders merchants. It is rumoured that this is soon for the chop. Wolverhampton 21 locks. BCN Main Line.

Looking down from Lock No 4 at Lock No 5. Wolverhampton 21 locks. BCN Main Line.

Looking back at the railway from Lock No 3. Wolverhampton 21 locks. BCN Main Line.

Looking up at Lock No 2.  We are assisting the Water Travel boat in front. Note the still low level in the pound below. Wolverhampton 21 locks. BCN Main Line.

Looking down from Lock No 2 at Lock No 3. Wolverhampton 21 locks. BCN Main Line.

Looking up from Lock No 2. The railway here forms the throat of Wolverhampton Station. Wolverhampton 21 locks. BCN Main Line.

Looking down from Lock No 2. The classic shot of Carvers Builders Merchants. Wolverhampton 21 locks. BCN Main Line.

Approaching the Top Lock. Wolverhampton 21 locks. BCN Main Line.

Entering the Top Lock. Peter W and Colin on lock duty. Wolverhampton 21 locks. BCN Main Line.

The Top Lock. Peter W operates paddle, Colin and Peter B chat to a passer by. Wolverhampton 21 locks. BCN Main Line.

The Top Lock and basin beyond. Wolverhampton 21 locks. BCN Main Line.

The basin at the Top Lock, we were to moor just behind the Water Travel boat. Wolverhampton 21 locks. BCN Main Line.

The Tour continues....

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