Day 44 – Fradley to Atherstone


The day dawned with clear skies and the promise of fine weather which soon materialised. Michael wore his sunglasses for the first time in days and was soon forced to dig out the sun tan lotion which hasn’t been used for about three weeks!

With no locks ahead of us for several miles we expected to make good progress to Fazeley on the outskirts of Tamworth. Unfortunately the last couple of miles from Hopwas were delayed by a boater who seemed unable to go any faster than ¾mph. Even Tardebigge’s tickover was gaining on him! Thankfully he stopped for services at Fazeley so we made a flying visit to the Tesco Express before pressing on to avoid any further delays.

The Glascote pair of locks are slow fillers. We investigated the boatyard above for oil but there was no sign of life so we moved on to Alvecote where ten litres were bought. Light rain came down which worsened as we approached the Atherstone flight. After four locks we tied up at the optimal point: furthest away from the road and railway.

Menu: cooked breakfast or cereal and toast; cold lasagne or Scotch egg and pork pie salad; asparagus starter followed by Iri Dori.

In lieu of any photos here are a few stats: as of yesterday (the end of the sixth week) we have done 711 miles and 450 locks in 310 hours of engine running time. Our fastest average speed for a day is the Sprotbrough to Eggborough day when we averaged 3.69mph. The slowest was Slaithwaite to Marsden at 0.80mph. The most locks in a day was Wigan to Wheelton: 28.

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