Posts Tagged ‘south yorkshire navigations’

Day 30 – Sprotbrough to Whitley (via Goole)

Thursday 23 July, 2009

The weather was much better today. We started off down Sprotbrough Lock and were joined by a large boat called Ethel. By the time we reached Doncaster Lock we were joined by a third boat, but still there was plenty of room in this enormous banana-shaped lock.

Alex stepped off briefly to revisit Tesco. He returned carrying a Debenhams bag (since they still had no carriers) containing four bottles of alcohol. It was barely 11 o’clock…

We pressed on towards Bramwith Junction and beyond, along the length of the New Junction Canal. BW assisted us through Sykehouse Lock, with only Michael operating the gates on the swing bridge. Turning right at Southfield Junction we “sprinted” the six miles to Goole, used the facilities, and retraced our steps.

The question of where to moor for the night arose and Great Heck seemed like a good idea since the nearby pub was recommended by the Nicholson’s guide. Unfortunately, due to piling works, there was nowhere to moor and no access from the towpath. We continued to Whitley Lock and moored just below the lock, alongside a string of fairy lights. An on-site security guard has now started a generator to illuminate them, pollute the atmosphere with fumes, annoy the local boaters, and drown out the noise of the nearby M62. A nearby boat has now moved. I thought BW were short of money.

Menu: semi-full English breakfast or sausage sandwich; ham sandwiches; homemade chicken, leek and bacon pie followed by cheese (and port!) etc.


Day 29 – Stainforth to Sprotbrough (via Mexborough)

Wednesday 22 July, 2009

If yesterday can be described as wet, today could be described at windy. Ferociously so. In fact it was so choppy in places the bow wave was catching the wind and blowing spray at the steerer.

After another leisurely start, we headed off towards Bramwith Junction following Cornucopia which we had passed in Thorne yesterday. We stopped at Bramwith Swing Bridge for services and then proceeded through the lock and beyond with Christal Haze.

We fought the wind all the way into Doncaster where we tied up for shopping and a lunch. Surprisingly, the rather large Tesco was completely out of carrier bags. Thankfully, Tardebigge has a good supply as anyone who has been on board can testify!

We spotted a good mooring spot at Sprotborough so the decision was made to turn at a suitable point and return for an overnight stay. Moorings are very limited on the South Yorkshire Navigations because much of it is on the River Don. We passed under numerous railway bridges including the fine Conisbrough Viaduct (disused) and even caught the occasional glimpse of Conisbrough Castle between the trees which we’d seen from the train back to Oxford last Friday.

On returning to Sprotbrough we moored in front of Cornucopia and continued with alcohol consumption. We seem to be drinking even more since Alex joined us. Apparently there is dessert wine tonight…

Menu: cooked breakfast or cereal and toast; cold gammon salad; Dinner: liver and bacon casserole, poached pear in a caramel and perry sauce, cheese and biscuits; all with suitable alcoholic accompaniments.