Thursday, 7 April 2016

Two busy days, day one ...

 Tuesday 5th April (day 1)
 Ready to rock n roll at 07:45 and the sun is already shining

 Caution not so needed today, in fact it was quite calm at the canoe whitewater stream!

We pulled over below Coppermill Lock to fill the water tank and get rid of our domestic rubbish and ...
... saw our first duckling this season - 11 of them!
 … and opposite that lovely scene building goes on apace on the old wharf
 As usual I’m walking ahead to set the locks and was met by this sight at Springwell

These two men are removing a piece of slate which they and their workmates had raised money for to provide a memorial for a much loved colleague who had recently died but unfortunately they didn’t request the necessary permission to place it on CRT land.

George arrives and pulls in to wait for the lock to become free for us to use
 Here they come now
 So good to see brand new gates at Stocker’s Lock
 George talking to John o’lock at his newly painted (by CRT) lock cottage.
We had an interesting chat with John, he’s lived in lock cottages for most of his life, his father worked for the then BW since the 1950s and John himself worked for BW/CRT for over 40 years.  He gave us lots of information about this area of Rickmansworth including the fact that the pound (stretch of canal between two locks) above Stocker’s is a flood pound which makes the water level look low but is able to cope with any flood water coming from the river to the side of Batchworth Lock (see picture below, the river joins the canal from the righthand side of the lock wall).  John has a varied collection of very old canal items which he has yet to replace at the front of his cottage for passersby to see and wonder at.
After stopping at Tesco and doing a big shop we pulled in at the Batchworth lock/sanitary station mooring to use the facilities and to enter the lock
2.5-hours, 6-miles and 8-locks later we ascend our final lock of the day at Cassiobury Park, but we didn’t stay long as the weather forecast over the next couple of days is wet and windy and we need to get a move on.

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