Norton junction

Tuesday, 9 October 2012

We left Foxton last Sunday and have made our way along the GU Leicester arm down the Watford flight which is near the Watford Gap Services on the M1. We are now moored above Buckby Top lock near the New Inn which is now closed. We reversed from Norton junction about 300 yards which was going OK until a Canaltime boat decided to overtake- but it all came good in the end. We are now ready to see Sam from Foxton Boat Services for an engine service tomorrow morning.
We purchased some coal from the working boat Callisto and were watched over by his lovely Calli-although I think she thought we had a biscuit for her.

We went through Crick tunnel which is 1528yards long and takes about 15 minutes,its very wet at is north end.The sun was a warming sight as you reached the exit.

Sunday night we were moored just before bridge 42 at Welford Junction. It was a lovely autumn evening with the sun giving a great reflection of the boat.-a magic moment-gone in a minute.

Foxton flight is a group of two- five stair case locks which are very deep as you enter them(even on sunny days its always damp and dark) going up the escarpment. This is the steerer's view as you enter. There is a lot of water been held behind that gate.

I have come into the light-Anne has opened the lock gates and I am now moving into the next lock to start the process again.

Foxton Locks to Union Wharf Market Harborough

Saturday, 6 October 2012

We made our way down Foxton locks last Thursday and then went along the arm to Market Harborough. As you leave Foxton there are nice moorings between bridges 5 and 6 if the ones nearer the locks are full.
A photograph looking at the remains of the Incline Plane from the observation platform. The boats would have entered the tanks on the left and descended to the bottom which is on the right-some 75ft lower. As one tank went down the other came up, the tanks ran on rails at each end of the tanks. The bases of the tracks can still be clearly seen.

The visitor moorings as you approach Market Harborough are all under trees and can be dark and cold. You can moor in Union Wharf but they do charge £8 per night including electricity. We decided to splash out and have a bus trip on Friday to Leicester. Again we seem to have missed the rain during the day but really heavy rain overnight. 

The only original warehouse left in Union Wharf which is now a restaurant again.

Our mooring for tonight just after bridge 6

Foxton locks

Thursday, 4 October 2012

We have managed to get out again and decided on a short trip along the Grand Union Leicester section to Market Harborough for a couple of weeks. It will also give me a chance to arrange an engine service with Sam at Foxton Boat Services. We have managed to avoid all the heavy showers either due to us having already moored up for the day or they happened overnight- that's a good result for a change.
As normal a few photographs of events or things we have seen on our journey.
Last Sunday afternoon we had moored near bridge 100 just before Braunston when I heard a lot of motor noise from over the hedge. A quick look and it was about 10 vintage tractors all in a line trundling across a field. They could have been going to a ploughing match but they just disappeared into the distance
Two of the  vintage tractors-could be Fordsons?

Later in the afternoon we heard the distinctive sound of a vintage engine coming from Braunston. Eventually motor Nuneaton and unpowered butty Brighton owned by The Narrow Boat Trust. They were fully loaded and were very low in the water.

This is what nb Nuneaton would look like without the load - very impressive and huge bow! It didn't have a name.

This is the stern of the butty Brighton with its lovely paintwork and curved wooden tiller.
Approaching Braunston bottom lock through the bridge. Its always busy and a very boaty location-one of our favourites.

Another one of my play on words-boat name.

We are moored at the top of Foxton flight but I had to walk down a have a look. Its always neat and tidy with lots of people about during the day, its now 6pm.Its a group of 2 sets of 5 staircase locks.  I am standing at the first lock of the second pair of 5 locks. The other famous thing about Foxton is the Incline Plane which operated from 1900 to 1910 when it was closed and eventually demolished- there are plans to reinstate it but need at least £10m!.