We are trying hard to arrive at, or be very close to Liverpool by 1st April, the day scheduled for an annual reunion luncheon at Liverpool Sailing Club with my old colleagues and friends from Blue Star Line.
We’re giving it a good try anyway and so have been burning the miles from Warwick. Ninety one of them altogether and ninety five locks in a fortnight is amazing travel for ‘Futurest’ and I who otherwise tend to take our time getting anywhere; there is always so much to see after all, which one misses at speed when all concentration is used trying to keep the boat on a straight course down the middle of a narrow canal. We’ve covered good mileages each day and up until now, with the exception of two in Birmingham, we have allowed ourselves only an overnight stay at each end of day mooring.
What has helped us in this quest is that we have travelled the Shropshire Union Canal before so we have seen much already of the beautiful countryside we are travelling through. I am certain too that we shall be visiting this lovely waterway again so what we don’t see this time we can see on another occasion.
An unusual sight. A George VII post box at Goldstone. Well painted!
Daffodils on the Shropshire Union
On our passage along the canal we have noticed much work being carried out by contractors employed by the C&RT dredging and cutting back offside vegetation and in fact much work has been in evidence all the way on our passage from Warwick. Here on the ‘Shroppie’ the team were doing a very tricky job most adequately and conscientiously and the towpath side is superb as well in that it has obviously benefitted from much care and attention. Both Janis and I have noticed that there is very little rubbish in the canal too and all of this care has to be motivated by our new trust.
Well done to them I say as none of this work, I have noticed, was ever carried out so profusely before they took over the authority.
The weather has been so kind to us since we began our cruise and on most days apart from the first when we were soaked and sad working our wet way through the Hatton Flight, the Sun has shone brilliantly and as a result signs of Spring are now well evidenced and entrenched. At our rural settings we are awakened each day by the dawn chorus of bird song and in particular the Blackbird flinging out his vigorous courting song, while bright young lambs gambol and play with each other across the lush green meadows of Springtime. It’s wonderful that come what may, Nature carries on each and every year with her bounteous task. She never fails us.
Now we are at Nantwich in Cheshire, moored high on the embankment above the ancient town and as another exception to our rule, we have remained here for two days. Ray, a friend of Janis’s, met us yesterday and stayed the night on board. I’ve met him before and he’s good company so it was a pleasure to see him again. We were due to move on this morning towards Barbridge Junction and the Middlewich Arm but high in this unsheltered mooring we were battered first thing by rain showers and a strong south westerly breeze so we’ve decided to stay here for a further twenty four hours hoping for sunshine to cheer us on our way tomorrow.
However this decision does enable me to write this account which otherwise would have been well overdue.
Alms-houses at Nantwich
Ladybirds awakening from hibernation in the Sun