Monday, 24 September 2012

A Thorough Soaking

Rain, rain and more rain!  According to tonight’s regional news a month’s worth of rain has fallen in the West Midlands in the last 24 hours.

We have travelled from Stourton Junction on The Staffordshire & Worcester to Delph Locks on The Stourbridge canal – 20 locks and about 5 miles – and it rained heavily all the time!  We ‘did’ the Stourbridge 16 in 3 hours – just me locking and, with all but two locks against us,  I think that was pretty good going.  We were utterly soaked!
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Starting off in the rain.
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No, not a slalom course - just a fierce by-wash.
Some of the bottom lock gates in the flight were problematic in that they would not behave themselves and stay shut together.  We call these gates ‘swingers’.  Picture the scene:-  I close one of the bottom gates, hurry to cross via the single top gate and rush to close the second bottom gate only to find that the first gate has swung back open!  Try again …… and again ...... and so on and so forth!  Solution:- John reversed the boat back to the closed bottom gate and held it in place with the boat hook while I sorted the other one out.  Well, it worked and meant that he didn’t have to keep climbing up the ladder.
On the way we passed:-
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Redhouse Glassworks.
From 1881 Stuart Crystal produced lovely glass ware here.  Today the site, dominated by the 30 metre high brick kiln,  is a museum and visitor centre.
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Dadford Shed – an old timber warehouse.

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“The Dock” – a traditional general store/off licence.

At Black Delph Junction the Stourbridge canal ends and the Dudley No 1 Canal begins ………. but that’s for tomorrow.

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