Tuesday, 16 July 2013

Hot cruising on the Grand Union.

Yesterday, having left the outskirts of Brentford, we made good progress heading north up the Grand Union Canal (slowly and sadly leaving London behind)………
……….and going through some amazingly rural-feeling areas such as this lovely bridge and lock setting at Norwood Top Lock.
Further on we got to the junction with the Slough Arm where we briefly stopped and had a welcome cup of tea and a chat with Sue and Vic on nb ‘No Problem’, who are stuck there at the moment trying to get their engine cooling problems sorted out.
As we say farewell, Sue’s modelling her latest line in, what she calls, her bilge clothing – very fetching Sue!
We caught up with Tony and Jan on nb ‘Aylmer’ at Cowley Lock and cruised together until we found a great mooring just above Uxbridge Lock, where we found Pauline and Neil on nb ‘Waterlily’ moored!  It didn’t take long before drinks, nibbles and the BBQ came out………..
………. and we all had a fantastically brilliant and balmy evening together.  Pauline, James, Doug, Tony, Jan and Neil.  The evening finished on board ‘Chance’ where we had coffee, chocolates and liqueurs and ………….
………… a diddy Dyson demonstration by Pauline! (diddy Dyson supplied by Doug).
Today – another blisteringly hot day as was yesterday, we left our very pleasant and quiet moorings at Uxbridge and were soon passing Harefields flooded gravel pits.
The gravel pits provide a lovely feeling as the canal opens out into a lake.  This was the scene of a national scandal in 1958 when the British Transport Commission scuttled masses of, what they referred to as, unwanted and obsolete working narrow boats which they later denied had taken place.
Further up the canal at Black Jack’s Lock a boat waited patiently for us to get to lock and join them, and who was it? – only our friends Debbie and James on nb ‘Lois Jane’ (who we haven’t seen for about a week!) 
It was good fun travelling up through the next few locks with them -  they had been just as surprised as we were at meeting them.
A somewhat odd extension to a lovely old cottage near Copper Mill Lock – love it or hate it.
There are still some wonderfully iconic lock cottages around.
We spot a fairly well known little boat on the canal system.
Batchworth Lock is a leftover of a very busy point at the peak of the canal workings.  The side lock provided access to Salters brewery and Rickmansworth gasworks at one time.
We got up to Cassiobury Park at Watford where this year’s IWA meeting is taking place this weekend – there are many boats already there and in their place.
We had to travel a fair way after Cassiobury Park before we were able to find a mooring – due pretty much to the hoards of “permanent moorers” that have taken up residence on the canal. However, everything comes to he who waits, and we found a super spot just after Hunton Bridge, where a massive boat cleaning operation took place.  We’ve never had ‘Chance’ in such a mess - but a couple of hours later and everything looked much better.


  1. I somehow find the statement regarding 'needing a clean up' somewhat hard to believe, your boat is always immaculate!

    I have washed the roof and one side of Triskaideka! X