Saturday, 4 May 2019

Increase in fees at Windsor ...

A beautiful sunrise at our Windsor mooring at 05:30 ... we're on the move again today (Monday 29th April) ...
17 miles and 5 locks ... a big day for us!
Since last summer quite a few trees have fallen on Baths Island, any that had landed in the river have been removed ... 

but the remnants are still on the grass ...
and it all looks such a mess.
Unusually there are a lot of boats moored on the towpath side of the Thames here and we wondered why.
Apparently (from what we could gather) Eton College have given the management of the riverside (they are the owners of the land) to 'another company' but the collection of fees is still controlled by the  local council (the warden being in the council's employ). The boats are the winter moorers that have had permission (by 'the company') to stay on but have been asked to move over to the Brocas and there has been some difficulty in collecting their mooring fees.  They have been informed by 'the company' that fees can be paid by direct debit but the local council have no idea who is or isn't paying their dues. 

By the way ... mooring fees have gone up and are now £10 for over 40' and £8 for shorter boats; there is a sign on Baths Island for information but not apparently on the Brocas' side.
Leaving under Windsor railway bridge as we continue our journey downstream ...

we can see four tents pitched on the island that have apparently been there for a number of weeks
It's a dull morning and quite chilly so far today
A coot and a swan nesting in close proximity ... there could be trouble ahead!

Passing the gathering of the swans and Windsor road bridge we head into the lock cut ...
where we can see that the archimedes screw (hydropower) which generates electricity to Windsor Castle is working today
Romney Lock was manned and we were soon through and approaching Victoria Bridge

and we see that preparations are underway for the Royal Windsor Horse Show which has been held on this site annually since 1943
Last glimpse of the castle for now
This overhanging branch usually holds several cormorants drying their wings, but none today!
I love this view of the Lime trees especially in the autumn of 2017

Through Albert Bridge and we're soon into Old Windsor Lock cut

Turn Back Bridge (our name) and our first baby Mallards this year

Old Windsor Lock is also manned and we wait for a cruiser to leave before passing through
Catching the sunlight although it is still quite chilly

Approaching Runnymede and passing trip boat Lucy Fisher we can see in the distance a group of tourists by the Jurors chairs
The Runnymede Memorial and the Commonwealth Airforces Memorial at the top of Cooper's Hill come into view too ...
and one of our favourite moorings here ... but we're not stopping today
My stomach clenched as we approached Bell Weir Lock ... we could see that a lockie was on duty ...
and it was Mr Grumpy!
Fortunately he had a volunteer on duty and he saw us down the lock where we noticed that the river is about 4" higher than usual.
Pretty dutch barge Ann Marie
Through Staines with its familiar verdigris church spire ...
and we saw motor yacht Iorana which was built in 1935 and is a Dunkirk Little Ship ... you can read about her history and adventures here
Port of London tug Falconbrook

Penton Hook Lock next on self service and I took over from a gentleman bringing his cruiser through and was then able to swap over with a crew member of one of the three cruisers waiting to ascend the lock ... I love it when a plan comes together!
This badly damaged boat was here in June last year ... perhaps it owner can't afford the repairs.
Another Little Ship here ... Janthea which was previously named Reda ... her story is here.
Next lock is Chertsey where although the sign said Self Service there was a lockie on duty ... a young lady ... unusual but good to see.
Through Chertsey Bridge
25 minutes later we're approaching our destination for tonight at the Thames Court Hotel, Shepperton.  By the time we'd moored up and sorted ourselves out it was after 2pm ... what to do ... eat at the pub now ... or later?  'Now' won easily and we treated ourselves to a lovely rather boozy, delicious lunch and an hours kip when we came home!
A very enjoyable day!


Mrs. Jaqueline Biggs said...

I can literally hear the joy in your voice at being on the move, revisiting familiar land-- and water marks, and taking in the beauty of life. It comes through your written words so clearly Carol and your photos as always are a wonderful accompaniment to your writing.

Thank you for a deeply needed boating fix and for bringing us all along as you cruised.

Love and Biggs big hugs to you both. xxx

Vallypee said...

Wonderful! I need to scroll down and catch up with your other posts. Thos 'Little Ships' are really gorgeous! They remind me very much of the bakdekkruisers over here that I'm completely in love with. Too charming for words. I've save the history to read later. Thanks for the lovely cruise, Carol!

Carol said...

Hi Jaq, it's good to hear from you. Yes we are really enjoying being on the move again and that I'm managing to give you your boating fix via the blog. Hope all is well in the US and that you are yours are keeping well. xx

Carol said...

Hi Val, thanks for your comment, glad that you enjoyed the post. The little ships really are fascinating especially the history of original owners and what adventures they were involved in during the evacuation at Dunkirk. I've looked up your bakdekkruisers and they are remarkably like the little ships I've seen.