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Wednesday, 16 May 2012

Monday 14th May 2012 Some rain overnight and damp at start. Engineer arrived before 9 to have a look & fiddle with engine alternator. He wasn’t a sparky & really had little more idea than I. Then I rang Steve at Debdale who guesses it might be diodes or regulator at fault. We decided to carry on anyway as this alternator only charges the starter battery and it doesn’t get much load at this time of year, plus I have a 12v battery charger on board & have attached it & put it to work.
Yellow fields are a feature at this time

Away at 11 and it was a pleasant day when out of the wind. Steady cruise through Wilmcote flight crossing 3 or 4 boats in the flight & stopping at Wilmcote for lunch. After lunch carried on to Wooton Wawen and stopped for the day in a lovely mooring about 200 yards before the wharf. Walked into village, the farm shop complex is not really open on Mondays, but we found 2 items we needed in the farm shop itself.

Edstone aqueduct
We wandered on, passing Wooton Hall, a lovely Palladian styled building, but surrounded by “park homes” as the hall is owned & head office to a park home company. 

Wooton Hall, missing out the "park Homes"
On to the church and this has a very interesting set of panels as a display as it is the oldest church in Warwickshire, dating from Saxon times though much altered. Well worth a visit. Then on the Bulls Head, around 700yrs old, for a lovely pint of Pedigree. Landlord is a Manchester City fan & had a rather thick head after celebrating their winning the Premier League the night before.
Wooton Wawen Church
Red Lion at Wooton Wawen

On our way back saw these interesting houses. 

The brickwork was incredible, sharp, perfectly pointed, looking as if they had been built the day before, except modern brickwork is nowhere near this quality, this having been built in 1919 to commemorate the much loved son, Selwyn, of the owners of Austy Manor. This building, or rather its chimneys & roofs could be seen from the boat to the East of the canal & I thought it looked interesting. I walked up there, took some pics & then googled it, to find it was only built in the early 1900’s, it wasn’t worth the walk! 6miles & 13 locks

Selwyn's Houses in Wooton
Tuesday 15th May and my brain clicked in. We are members of RCR!! Rang them & tried to fix up to meet an engineer. He was on a breakdown but would call back.....but we went through an area of no phone signal! 
Wooton Wawen wharf. Boats having a pump out stop in the aqueduct
I guess when an engine is removed that boat is there too!

Having passed through several locks above lock 35 I saw a boat descending & left the top gate open and then recognised the boater walking down having left her gate open. It was Maz & Pete on Two Lazy Bees & who winter in Debdale, or rather their boat does, they go off in their caravan to the sun. We hadn’t seen them all last winter so we stopped and had a good natter over coffee and Carol’s cakes. Really interesting to do some catching up.
Maz & Pete with coffee & cakes

After lunch we carried on & Kerry from RCR rang & we arranged to stop at Lowsonford to meet him. Good bloke from Kegworth, did various tests and said he could fit an alternator he was carrying at a cost of about £75 or take the old one away for repair, which might cost????? His guess of a new alternator from Nanni was around £200-250. A no brainer.....not exactly as the wiring to the rev counter on Lily is different from normal & he couldn’t work out how it linked to the alternator. We could run with the alternator removed to be repaired, but with it off there would be no drive to the water pump. We decided to carry on until we can hook up to the mains before removing it. We stopped the night & had some very heavy rain in the evening.  4miles 8locks

An interesting bird box

Some wag reckoned these bridges were made
this shape to let Carol's flowers pass through

A pair of that increasingly rare species, anglers.
These were spinning for zander & intended to put them back

A pretty Stratford canal view

Wednesday 16th May and a lovely bright morning after a cold night, less wind but still needed jumpers etc. Away at 9.25 we were first off northwards and virtually every lock was set for us. As I walked between the first 2 locks I looked back & saw someone start to refill it, but we never saw them again as virtually all would have been against them. We arrived at Kingswood Junction in under 2 hours & then spent ages at a really slow water point. We rounded the turn & stopped for lunch on the 48 hr moorings, very pleasant. A new set of boats arrived, a normal looking narrowboat towing a shorter butty with cloths. Comfortably Numb & Echoes, they run it as a shop for painted ware, polish and all sorts.

A modern working pair
After lunch we turned south down the GU to moor alongside Hatton railway station. Trying to pull in to the mooring we got terribly stuck on a very firm lump and it took ages to get free, but we just managed it. Tomorrow we set off by train to Chichester to our daughter’s 40th birthday party so here endeth this week’s blog.
The other week I include a photo of this off-side
It was full of wild flowers, sadly it was mown the other day!

7 miles 10 locks on Wednesday and a weekly total of 18 miles and 35 locks
Just up from our mooring I noticed this engine removal happening this evening.
Clever work as the range of movements of the fork lift is small.

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