Thursday, 29 May 2014

Buckden & Saturn in Trevor Old Dry Dock

What a way to start a day!  I was just opening up in the Information Centre, when Buckden and Saturn arrived in Trevor Basin.  The plan was to see if they would both get into the 'wet' dock (as opposed to the Anglo Welsh dry dock next door).  CRT plan to repair the walls between the two docks, and hopefully put it to good use.

You don't see many of these on the top end of the Llangollen Canal!


With a bit of heaving and shoving, the stop planks were removed, and opened up the dock, for the first time in many, many years.

First to enter the dock was Saturn, the only remaining Shroppie Fly Boat, ably manoeuvred by CRT's Les.

Then Buckden.....

That's a big boat!

Gently does it.....

And they're in... both of them.

And out again.....

of course the rain was coming down in buckets

Bit of pulling, bit of poling.......

and they were off again. 
This is the first time anyone can remember that two boats have been in the dock together - let's hope it's not the last, and the much awaited repairs are carried out to accommodate visiting boats such as these.

Wednesday, 28 May 2014

Sunset over Dinas Bran

Dave took some wonderful photos a couple of weeks ago, as the sun set behind Dinas Bran in Llangollen.  These pics were taken from our mooring in Fron, 4 miles away.  It has however, taken me three weeks to put them up on the blog - sorry Dave!

Pretty impressive, I'm sure you agree !

We're both back in work, Dave at Chirk Marina, but only for 3 days a week, and I'm back at the Pontcysyllte Aqueduct Information Centre in Trevor Basin, working 5 days a week.  It's been extremely busy I can tell you!  Visitor numbers increase year on year, and this Spring Bank Holiday last week was the busiest weekend we've ever had over there.  I wish I had a pound for every time I had to say "Pontcysyllte" (Pont-ker-sulth-tay for those who can't master the double LL sound). Oh, and we've been on holiday to Aberdaron for a week - yes I know we've only just come back from our 6 month holiday - but a trip to the seaside is a must for us, at least once a year.  We also dragged Carole from NB Strider along with us, and Peaches the dog of course.  Nemo was confined to the cattery for the week & boy was he glad to see us when we went to pick him up.  "Rather vocal your cat, isn't he" said the cattery owner.  I'll leave it there for now, I've got some wonderful pics of Buckden & Saturn in the 'wet' dock in Trevor Basin, but that's for next time.....

Thursday, 20 March 2014

Chester Locks

I didn't realise how behind I was with the blog!  I'd got so used to not having a signal whilst coming up the Shroppie.  Once in Chester we got wrapped up in visiting family, my job application for the summer (yes I had to wait for the CRT advert to appear on the web site, then apply for the job in the Information Centre, the same as anyone else).  Before you know it 3 weeks have passed, and we're currently back on the Llangollen Canal (just).

The locks to go down into Chester basin are a staircase of 3 - and all pretty deep.  We had a swop around, and Dave did the locks whilst I stayed on the boat.  I'd rather Dave control the paddles, and which chamber has to be full or empty - in case I get it wrong.  Pretty scary though - looking up at the lock gates holding back thousands of gallons of water!

The towpath along the walls is closed for repair, which makes it very awkward to get off the boat to get to the lock.


Great views though!

Approaching the Mill

Locks up ahead, although this part of the towpath was closed to pedestrians...

... as they repaired a section of wall which had fallen down.

View from the top of the walls

Great sightseeing bus
lots of real ale pubs

and a proper job pasty shop!  It'll be hard to drag Dave away.

Chester Cathedral

The new apartment blocks were still under construction the last time we visited, now most are occupied.  Apparently, there will be a new CRT service block sited on the right, by the new apartments.

We took the last available mooring in Chester Basin, the boat who came down behind us just moored on the water point - and left it for the weekend!  The boats have been here for a while, judging by the boater's rubbish in the litter bins.  When we were preparing to leave, we saw the CRT boat checker man doing his rounds.  He told me that there were a few boats there with winter moorings - on the few available moorings in the basin. Why?  There's not that many moorings available anyway - even less with two 70ft CRT boats moored and a large gap left "for maintenance craft only".

We had a lovely few days wondering round the city, we met up with Bethan for a meal, then Mum and Tony came for a visit.  The weather was lovely, and really warm.  Dave did his best to visit the real ale pubs, but didn't manage to get round them all!