Thursday, 8 May 2014

Going Down to the River

Anderton to R. Weaver 005

Trent and Mersey canal entrance to the Anderton Boat lift.  You are looking at the holding basin in the foreground and the black structure is the guillotine gates that lock off the access the aqueduct to the lift.

We went along to the booking office Tuesday afternoon and arranged our passage/transit down to the River Weaver. There is a £5 fee to book your passage but a turn up, moor up hang around option is free of charge?  Apparently when this magnificent boat lift was renovated some years ago at something like £7million I am told that British Waterways applied a £15 charge each way…result uproar, further result, toll completely rescinded.  Well I think that it is time to put a toll back C&RT but a reasonable one of say £5 return, and call it a toll, not an admin fee. Something as magnificent as this piece of engineering, working engineering at that, is worth paying for and I can’t think that many boaters would object to contributing directly to its continued existence and maintenance.



Anderton to R. Weaver 006

Here the guillotine gate is being raised to allow Nb. Yarwood and Nb. Ivy to enter the aqueduct


Photo courtesy of Geoff NB. Seyella

Here you can see the aqueduct leading from the Trent and Mersey Canal to the boat lift


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Nb Yarwood entering the holding basin from the canal and heading for the aqueduct gate to the left

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Crossing the aqueduct.  When both boats are safely on the aqueduct the guillotine gate will be closed again cutting off the aqueduct from the canal


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From my vantage point on the boat lift 70 feet in the air I spotted Mags and Geoff tying NB Seyella up.  They had just moved round from their overnight mooring to see us descend.


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Now in the aqueduct with the gates secured behind us the guillotine gates are raised to allow us to enter the lift caisson


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Moving into the caisson

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Both boats in  and waiting for the gates to close behind us to seal the caisson

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And here we start our slow hydraulically controlled descent

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Geoff taking photo’s of us


Photo courtesy of Geoff NB. Seyella

Joe on the back of the boat as we are lowered.  The boat with us on the descent was Nb Ivy owned by a Russian gent who keeps it on the BCN until he has visitors, from Ukraine and Russia to form a crew then he takes it out cruising.


Photo courtesy of Geoff Nb. Seyella

That would be me, well wrapped up and trussed by my life jacket, on the tug deck

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We are now at river level and the gate at the front of the caisson is rising to allow us out onto the R. Weaver


Photo courtesy of Geoff Nb. Seyella

From Geoff’s viewpoint as the caisson reaches river level


Photo courtesy of Geoff Nb. Seyella

The guillotine gate being lifted to release us on to the Weaver

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Free to go


Photo courtesy of Geoff Nb. Seyella

On to the River we go


Photo courtesy of Geoff Nb. Seyella

Hard left to join Nb. Seyella at their mooring

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Moored in front of Nb. Seyella at Northwich Country Park


  1. It's great, isn't it! We enjoyed every moment of it. Our regret was that we were then in a rush to get to the ship canal, so couldn't really experience the Weaver, or the lift back up again. However, it just means we'll have to go again!

    1. Adam it has taken us five years to come back, shame on us! We will endeavour to visit more frequently because the northern stretch of the T&M is just lovely and the R. Weaver is the cherry on the top!!
      X Lesley

  2. Lesley,

    Great info and pictures....


    1. Thank you Nev. when will you be bringing Percy down to try the waters?


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