This mornings start was later than usual at 9am (Chris
rebelled a little) and as we left Whittington the canal narrows slightly and plays peek-a-boo with the railway that has never been far away for the last few days.
This section is rather non descript until Huddlesford Junction which if it ever gets restored is the turn for the Wyrely and Essington canal. The Lichfield and Hatherton trust have restored some sections, and notably, get the aqueduct over the M6 toll road built. The first stretch from the junction is currently moorings for the Lichfield Cruising Club.
|Huddlesford Junction, just moorings for now|
|Looking back at the junction|
|Ever the optimist, the sign at the junction points to Ogley Junction|
though it will be some time before you can get there by boat.
|Streethey Wharf, a busy place with lots of work going on.|
|Welcome shade at a bridge 'ole|
We got to Fradley at 11.30am and took advantage of clear moorings before the swing bridge. We stopped for a look around as Chris wanted some post cards and a gift for our girls. We got the cards but the gifts will have to be sourced elsewhere.
|The Swing bridge marks the end of the Coventry canal|
|The famous Swan pub. Great Haywood is to the left|
Alrewas to the right.
|Looking towards Alrewas|
|Looking towards Great Haywood and our route|
From then on the Trent and Mersey passes into more countryside but gets quite shallow and narrower still. In places AmyJo ran aground so progress was slow. In the heat Chris and I kept bottles of water and orange to hand to stave of de-hydration. At one bridge 'ole AmyJo scuffed an under water obstacle causing her to swerve to the left. I corrected her course but we ended up passing under a tree and my straw hat (that had been Roy's) and being worn by Chris got knocked of by a branch and fell into the cut. We tried to reverse to recover it but even under low revs so much debris was being washed up from the bed of the canal we gave up for fear of the prop picking up a passenger
At Hansacre all moorings were taken as people tried to get relief from the sweltering heat so we had no choice but to continue on through Armitage. Here we took advantage of the shade given by the huge and imposing Armitage Shanks factory for some blessed coolness.
|Armitage Shanks factory gave lovely shade as we passed by.|
|Looking back as we exit the narrows|
|And our route today|
Average speed:1.81 mph (2.23 lock/mph)