Sunday, 14 August 2016

9 Days in London

I am condensing this so you don't fall asleep reading it. Fantastic mooring in Kings Cross with the lovely Jona who was the warden there who is now a friend for life.Walked miles around the city did HMS Belfast and Grenwich Maritime Museum, ate street food and drank far too much, visits from the children and friends from home, I still don't understand the tube system even though we used it a lot,good job Mark was there.I have loved London but really glad to leave too and get back to more rural surroundings I think I would have burnt out if we'd stayed much longer.

Thursday, 4 August 2016

                                          I guess we were more easily entertained in those days
                                                          The creepy asylum
                                              Done in black and white to look creepier!

Ever nearer to London

I absolutely love the Thames there is such a diverse range of river craft from the tiniest motor boat to the almost super yachts, and the houseboats are amazing ( good and not so good ). We were surprised and pleased to get a mooring right outside Hampton Court Palace, and had a visit from daughter No1s friend Daniella along with her two sons Jayden and Logan. Had a lovely afternoon wandering round the palace thanks to Daniellas free pass.Having got our days mixed up we left the mooring to get a few miles under our belt and coming off the Thames at Brentford onto the Grand Union was a bit of a shock, so much rubbish everywhere, we did the Hanwell flight ( 6 locks ) at dusk and met some local characters ( some a bit dodgy ) we also passed an old mental asylum ( the internets words not mine) it was so creepy there was no way I was mooring up next to that place.As we now have a day we didn't know we had, an easy day tomorrow I think .......Lou.  Xxx

Monday, 1 August 2016

Beautiful Godalming....and then the Pikeys moved in

Speakeasy at the southernmost point of the network; during a maintenance period!

Our friend's children Freddy and the lovely Isabelle fishing for treasure at Cartbridge.

Wey Navigation

We have just finished 3 weeks cruising the River Wey navigation, so called as it was one of the first Rivers to be 'canalised' for freight traffic. Apart from the usual cargoes of corn, coal, timber and chalk for the lime kilns etc this waterway was also used to transport ordnance from Woolwich arsenal and gunpowder (locally produced in Guilford) to Portsmouth. Yes that's right Portsmouth; a branch line called the Wey and Arun canal split off above Godalming at a place called Guns mouth and went all the way to Chichester then turned west through Chichester harbour, through Southsea and finally emerging at Gunwharf... So Guns mouth to Gunwharf!  This was not the end of the journey though as most of the munitions were then shipped across the pond to help fight the yanks during the war of Independance.

Unfortunately Godalming is the most southerly point on the navigable part of the entire network so we just had to reverse right up to the bitter end just to say we did it, and what a beautiful spot it was too!

Church window illuminated

Down at the Doctors

So we're back on the Thames and instead of turning right towards London, we have had to go back upstream to "4all Marine" to get a new centre rope anchor point welded on as the pathetic little weedy one we had has finally snapped off.  The yard was run by big Dave and his nephew Luke, where they both repair and build steel boats and house boats. What was really refreshing was that the work took only half an hour and a pretty bit of welding too! Also there wasn't a single bit of hi-vis or hard hats to be seen, and surprise surprise nobody died!! A really good yard and is thoroughly recommended.