Daisypath Anniversary tickers

Wednesday 30 April 2014

Four Lanes End

So where was I ..?
Marple if I recall.  We had planned to stay in Marple Wednesday and Thursday and move on Friday but after servicing the boat on Friday ahead of leaving, the heavens opened, and they seriously opened with a biblical style deluge!  So, we wimped out and found an alternative mooring and stayed in town yet another night.  Come Saturday morning though we were up and out and moving south  before the world woke up.
 Here we go, farewell Marple
 And then tramping along the towpath you come across this...an abandoned porti potti left by some scum bag that unfortunately is a fellow boater.  How shameful is that?
 We were only planning to move down towards Bollington, mooring at bridge 25 just north of the town and staying put for the weekend however I spotted a lovely mooring on rings at Four Lane Ends by Lyme View Marina and signalled Joe to pull in. 

Moored for the weekend
Miners Arms Four Lane Ends
Just along the lane from our mooring was The Miners Arms so off we went with the dogs for a pint of real ale and a packet of pork scratchings for the boys.  Friendly and welcoming but a pub that doesn't know how to serve real ale - too cold, far too cold, real ale should not be treated like a pint of  Fosters or Carlsburg -  so we decided that Sunday Lunch would be somewhere else and we knew just the place..

Thursday 24 April 2014

Errands in Marple

Today we have stayed moored in Marple, though Joe took himself off to Manchester by train for the day after walking the dogs.   In the meantime I had located a launderette just by Goyt Mill so while Joe walked the boys I took duvets and sleeping bag to the laundry for a spring clean; errand one completed. 

 Goyt Mill is the sunshine
Errand two was to pick up a walking boot belonging to Joe that we had left with the local cobbler for a bit of stretching...£1.75 spent and Joe is now comfortable again.  Errand three was to get a supply of hide dog chews for the boys and errand four was to have some contact/business cards printed.  So many boaters are better organised than us, offering a card with blog/phone/e-mail details rather than the scrap of paper and scribbled note that usually produce, well no more, tomorrow we pick up our printed contact cards from  Inkbox of Marple.  So with these tasks done and dusted I took the boys out for a wander around Marple setting off initially along the Upper Peak Forest canal to the first bridge and then heading up the hill towards the local church.

 Interesting tomb stone detail below

 Annie Fletcher (Betty) 1865 - 1933
After wandering about the grave yard for a while I turned and headed down the Marple flight of locks And one of the things you notice is that all the structures are built out of indigenous stone rather than the usual brick and the skill of the stone mason is evident throughout. .

 Serious and useful 'boot grips'

 No slipping and sliding here when trying to open/close a gate
Look at the work in the bed of the snake bridge

 Samuel Oldknow's warehouse by lock nine
 Covered dock at Samuel Oldknow's warehouse
 Lock cottage circa 1805

 Line roller, to stop the tow line from snagging on top of the wall at lock 10.
As I got to the penultimate lock there was a single handler on his way down so I got in some lock practise and worked him through the last two locks having borrowed his windlass.

 Single handler just climbing back down to his boat

 Last lock prepared and open

Done and dusted and he is on his way a happy man..

Wednesday 23 April 2014

Back on the Macc

We left our mooring overlooking the Goyt valley this morning and headed back along the Upper Peak Forest Canal towards Marple.  

This mornings view from the boat

Our initial cruising plans, up until I changed my mind the day before yesterday, was to drop down the Marple flight and make our way into Manchester via the Ashton and the Rochdale canals. 
However as the proximity of Manchester loomed larger I asked myself   'did I want to do the Ashton canal and  did I want to spend time in Manchester?' 
I am really not much into big towns and Cities...all those people, all that concrete, all that traffic... 
I do however  appreciate that cities also offer, all that culture, all that history and all that variety of life but it is not an attractive prospect to me so we are readjusting the cruising plans and heading back down the Macclesfield Canal. 

 Off he goes
Here be a sunken boat 
Just around the bend and through the next bridge is the sunken cruiser, would Yarwood go through without difficulty this time?  No. Another struggle ensued to get Yarwood safely pass the obstruction but Joe won out after a bit of tooing and froing and by now we had picked up another boat heading in the same direction.

 Success, Yarwood clears the obstacle
 New Mills Marina with Matlows Mill - makers of sweets such as Love Hearts  - in the background. As you pass through here the air is redolent with the sugary smells reminding one of childhood sweeties...

 I hurry on to our first swing bridge - only swing bridge actually - of the day at Higgins Clough and watch both Yarwood and our follower, Nb. Raymond V , go through.  That done I close the bridge and jog, yes jog,  along to the next bridge, a lift bridge at Wood End.  Seventy three turns of the windlass and the hydraulics lift the bridge and with both boats through another seventy three turns and the dogs and I are back on the towpath.

 I have another lock wheeler now though.  There goes crew from Nb. Raymond V to set the last lift bridge of our day.

 Nb. Raymond V following Nb. Yarwood to Marple

 A sight I don't see too often as I am usually on the offside with the lifted bridge 

 Fletcher posing..

And here we be, serviced and lucky enough to secure a mooring in Marple

Tuesday 22 April 2014

Rivers, Viaducts, Mills and Miscellaneous..

We moored yesterday on the high canal embankment overlooking the Goyt Valley close to New Mills on the Derbyshire/Cheshire border. There is an excellent linear country park through the valley bottom and many people were out taking advantage of yesterday's unexpectedly fine weather.  Things were not so pleasant today as far as the weather went but by late morning the rain appeared to have passed through, Joe had gone of to catch a train into Buxton, so I set out to do a more extended walk with the two dogs.

The view from the canal embankment looking towards New Mills featuring one of the Viaducts
There is a public footpath leading down the hillside to the valley bottom from the towpath near bridge 29. Once at the bottom a gated footbridge takes you across the R. Goyt and leads you around some farm buildings and sheep pasture and back to a riverside path. 

 One of my Misc. shots, a Canada Goose and her clutch of eggs

 These little people out for some fresh air with their nursery class had stopped to see the lambs and the lambs had obliged by running across their pasture to see the children...cue very gleeful children!

 There are a number of Llamas kept in the same field and here be one

 And here be number two

 Wild garlic now in flower
Olympic Stick Throwing tag team...
Joe throws the stick into the river, Fletcher retrieves it

Stick retrieval,  Simples
As you approach the town of New Mills, following the route of the Goyt river you enter a deep gorge of Sandstone and Gritstone known as The Torrs.  It is in the gorge that Mill construction was undertaken, the first mills being water powered.  Mill building started in 1788 and in 1810 there were 9 Cotton Mills, 3 Weaving Mills and more than 3 Printworks.    The mills were later  converted to steam power, plenty of water and coal seams nearby to facilitate the change. 
The town was served by the Peak Forest Canal and at one time, three Rail lines.
 To celebrate the Millennium in 2000 a stunning walkway was erected that takes you through part of the gorge high above the level of the river; details here Millennium Walkway New Mills Derbyshire

 Sections of the gorge sides are set aside for climbers to use
 He was about 80 feet up...
rather him than me thank you

 Another Viaduct and mill race

The remains of another race?

Monday 21 April 2014

All of ...not quite two miles

We slipped away from Bugsworth Basins this morning having overstayed by 12 hours; but with permission granted.  First point of call was the service block where we did the usual stuff of filling and emptying different tanks  but we also took the opportunity to give the side of the boat a quick wash down to remove the layer of white/grey dust that she was sporting..

Yarwood on the services at Bugsworth Basins
I noticed just as we were about to move off again that the 'door mat' had been left behind on our weekend mooring so I scuttled back toot sweet to recover it.  It doesn't save that much mess getting in the boat because of the four of us that live on Yarwood, only two of us bother to wipe our feet..
 but every little helps.

 So off we go, through the gauging stop past the former Wharfinger's office and cottage where tolls would have been calculated and collected, and on to the junction where we managed to get on the last mooring so I could visit the Tesco store which is immediately adjacent. Twenty minutes later we are off again with supplies of fresh milk, bread and salad leaves sitting in the galley waiting to be put away later.

Yarwood turning back on to the Upper Peak Forest Canal

 Close up of the willow that has been planted and woven to provide bank edging
 Willow banking along here
 Another Andy Russell signed boat
Carr swing bridge just past Furness Vale Marina, open and awaiting Yarwood's transit
And shortly after coming through Carr Swing Bridge we moor up above the Torrs Riverside Park on the outskirts of New Mills.
The River Goyt flows through the valley beneath our mooring and then on  through New Mills where it was once an important source of energy for powering the cotton mills built along its banks.   After a light lunch - fast day again - we took a walk through the park and into the town and tomorrow I will go off exploring with the dogs while Joe hops a train from Furness Vale into Buxton.