Today we just had to have a canal “fix” and so joined part of the Chichester Canal’s 190 year celebrations. Anyone with a small boat could join the “bullion run” from Chichester Harbour (or as near to it as we could get) to the canal basin in the city centre. So we loaded up our canoe……….
………and set off for the canal – one rather large canoe safely strapped on! It had been decided that friends Andrew and Kerry would join us for the event and Andrew and Doug would take the canoe down the canal. (more of James later!)
Doug and Andrew preparing for the 4 mile trip.
They’re off! About 20 to 30 small craft took part in today’s event and it was a great sight to see so many boats and so much colour.
About a 1/3 of the way along the canal we reached a road crossing where, as yet, there is no bridge – so the tried and tested method of ‘portage’ was used and all the boats where taken out of the water and carried across the road! On the other side, and back in the water, we met up with the larger powered craft for the rest of the journey and also the Mayor of Chichester who was there to see the safe transportation of the gold bullion into the city.
The bullion boat, with the Mayor safely aboard, starting on the their journey into Chichester.
Andrew and Doug leading the field on the home straight. The canal basin is ahead with the cathedral spire in view.
Doug and Andrew getting the canoe out of the water and onto the quayside ready for loading back onto the car.
The two “gun boats” which escorted the Mayor and bullion back to Chichester. These two amazing little electrically powered boats have a man inside, lying on his back, who controls them via a camera and video screen. They gave us a display of their fire power here in the canal basin – very loud!!
Well it was a great day – the weather was good for us and we finished up with a celebratory, and well earned, drink in the pub on the quay before going home. We were delighted to be welcomed into the basin by friends from Selsey and Cheltenham and also Adam who had just returned from a few days on nb ‘Briar Rose’.
Quickly returning to James – rather annoyingly his heart had reverted back to Atrial Fibrillation when he got up yesterday morning. We were aware that this does happen sometimes and so we’re back to square one! Our return to ‘Chance’ for the summer, which was scheduled for next weekend, is now on hold until we know what happens next. Watch this space!