Monday, 8 June 2015

Anderton Boat Lift.

Hi all,
This week we are moored just upriver of the Anderton Boat Lift and its junction with the River Weaver near Northwich in Cheshire,after descending the boat lift yesterday.
Entering the Anderton Lift yesterday morning ready for the descent down to the River Weaver some fifty feet below.
Looking down onto the Edwin Clark Trip Boat as she prepares to ascend the lift.Edwin Clark was the Engineer who came up with the idea of a boat lift which was built in 1875.
We stayed one more day in Runcorn last week and went for a walk along as much of the old Bridgewater Canal as we could from it's current end of navigation at Waterloo Bridge to where it joined the Manchester Ship Canal.
Part of the line of the abandoned stretch of the Bridgewater Canal with the chamber of one of the ten locks that dropped the canal down to the Manchester Ship Canal,which can just about be seen in the distance,behind the buildings.
On Tuesday we set off from our mooring at the Bridgewater Motor Boat Club in Runcorn and made our way some seven miles to the site of the major canal breach in 2012 at Dutton on the T&M.After a prolonged period of heavy rain the canal burst its bank and washed the towpath down the embankment,draining the canal.I've wanted to stop there ever since the breach was repaired because you can see for miles across the countryside while there are still no trees and only a low hedge.Once again we had to travel through Preston Brook Tunnel and the stop lock just to the South after turning onto the T&M at Preston Brook Junction.We spent four nights moored there while we waited for the Anderton Boat Lift to be repaired and managed a couple of nice walks as well as getting a lot of little jobs done on Chyandour.On Thursday we took a short walk down to Dutton Locks on the River Weaver,there's a circular route from our mooring which takes about an hour.
The view from the mooring Dutton Railway Viaduct,which carries the West Coast Mainline,in the distance.

The wreck of the MV Chica at Dutton Locks on the Weaver.It's been here since 1993 after what was quite an interesting life,if what I've been able to discover is correct.She was built in 1894 in Norway and was commandeered by the German Navy during WW2 and after the war found herself running guns in the Mediterranean and finally smuggling cigarettes and tobacco before becoming a fishing boat in Liverpool in 1950's.Her last job was as a cruise ship traveling up and down the Weaver for about a decade or so in the 1980's.
The paired locks at Dutton,there are two chambers,one larger than the other and they both have two sets of gates to accommodate vessels of different lengths and save water.The Semaphore signals indicate whether a lock is available or not,the left hand lock is no longer in use so I take it that a down signal is for closed.
On Saturday morning we were a bit more ambitious and walked the two and a half miles or so each way back up the T&M to Preston Brook where there is a Convenience Store.We wanted to stock up on supplies to keep us going for a day or two as there aren't many shops where we will be for the next few days.The walk took us over the top of Preston Brook Tunnel on the route that the horses would have taken while the boats were legged through the tunnel.
It was a lovely morning for our walk over the top of the tunnel on Saturday and about halfway over there's the Tunnel Top pub,we didn't go in as it was a tad too early to be honest,
Looking back at the boat lift as we turned upstream onto the River Weaver before making our way the short distance to the moorings where Val and Pete with NB Tadpole 2 were waiting for us.
The stern of Tadpole 2 and our mooring as we cruised along the river.
Well,that's all again for this week.Since last week we have gone through 1 Lock and cruised for 12 Miles.That gives us a Grand Total of 1,157 Locks and 1,902 Miles since we set off on our travels with Chyandour in October 2012.Take care everyone.

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