Canal Closed. 21st April

Lock 15

It may be Easter Sunday/Monday/Friday, what ever Easter day it is I needed to do some work. Panto may be months off, but my first design deadline is mid May, so a pause in cruising was needed so I could get some sketching done. My hope is that John will return to work on Tuesday after his Easter break to lots of sketches from me, feed back will follow then I’ll be able to get on with a white card model.

It’s too busy! Make them all go away

10 hours! Wowee!! That would be great if only everyone in this outside would just go away! Too many bicycles, woofers, runners, walkers, all busy moving their outside leaving us where we are. All a bit too busy for my liking.

A couple of boats came past late morning heading down the locks, Mick asked about water levels higher up and was told there was plenty of water. He warned them about the levels further down towards Hebden and on they continued. About 3:30pm a C&RT notice came through.

Due to low water levels between Locks 7 and 13 on the Rochdale Canal the navigation is currently closed.
We will continue to monitor the water levels and will update the notice as soon as possible.

Thank goodness we’d got to above Lock 15, it did make us wonder if the two boats going down had got stuck needing assistance from C&RT to get floating again. Weekend and day boats would only come so far up the locks before turning round back to base, therefore gradually diminishing the water in certain pounds. We were surprised that the closure included through Hebden Bridge.

Hot Paw Buns

After watching Mick and Frank devouring their big fat hot cross buns the other day I decided to make some of my own. The recipe I’d found last year had been quite successful and I had everything I needed on board. So whilst I worked on sketches the dough was allowed time to rise, three times before going in the oven with marzipan paw prints on their tops.

Inspiration for Puss in Boots

Mick spent some of the day packing away the spare bedding. This lives under our sofabed and sadly the mechanism has torn through the vacuum bags. We had one bag spare, a giant one. This would hold everything, it’s just that it wouldn’t fit under the sofa with or without air in it. As this was all going on in my studio, it was hard to ignore and I had to take over get involved.

They won’t get very far!

Late afternoon another boat came past heading for the lock, Mick went out to inform them of the stoppage. The couple moor just this side of the summit and were heading to Hebden Bridge for blacking in a weeks time. They are used to lack of water on the Rochdale, they also had plenty of tales to tell of the floods.

New piling to hold the landslip back

In 2015 the river and canal just about became one, in Hebden Bridge where we’d moored the towpath was under 18inches of water and you could only wade through the park where everyone had been sunning them selves on Friday. I’d have been fine up my tree! Up ahead of us there is a stretch where the bank is still washed away and alongside our current mooring is where there was a landslip, now held back by piling. This stretch kept the canal closed for quite sometime.

They decided to continue on down and see where they could get to before they could go no further. Mick helped them through the lock and waved them goodbye.

Everyone on the towpath

As it was such a lovely evening and I’d been cooped up all day trying to work we decided to have a barbecue. We had just enough coals left from last year to cook some veg kebabs and a couple of turkey steaks that I’d marinated. Because we’d had a Hot Paw Bun when they’d come out of the oven we refrained from our usual banana with chocolate for pudding. This meant Tilly had extra time outside which with fewer people about she enjoyed much more.


Will this summer be like last? Will we be having barbecues instead of Sunday roasts until autumn now? I hope so.

Not a bad spot to spend the evening

0 locks, 0 miles, 2 Easter eggs, 12 sketches, 3 boats down, 1 boat up, 6 scanned illustrations, 10 hours of watching, 1 hour of enjoying, 2 holey bags, 1 big bag, 1 squished up sofa, 9 hot paw buns, 2 turkey steaks, 4 kebabs, 1 block of Haloumi left from last year, 1st evening on the towpath.