Rugby to Dunchurch Pools Marina Bridge 80
No rush to be on the move this morning, so Tilly was allowed to head off and explore whilst we had breakfast. Next was a shopping trip. We’d opted to moor nearer the station than Tescos so we had a bit of a walk there and back for supplies to keep us going for the next few days.
Lock 4 at Braunston has been shut for 48 hours, opening later today. C&RT have been carrying out repairs to the gates and cil to reduce water loss. Also overnight closures at Watford, Long Buckby etc have come into effect this week so that back pumping can be more effective overnight. Both of these things have put a stop to our plan of popping up to Crick to see our friend Lizzie, instead we hope to catch up with her a bit further south.
So we are in no rush to get to Braunston to join the queue to use the locks, we’d just get a touch closer today. The sun being out helped and despite us being on the flat for a while I decided to have a day off work, well almost.
We pootled along towards Hillmorton. The new road bridge that will lead to Houlton (the new village of 6200 homes, 3 schools etc) has come on somewhat since we last passed. Now the roadway spans the canal and is certainly wide enough to be a duel carriageway. Big bold letters announce the bridges name Houlton Bridge 66A.
Hillmorton water point was empty. This tap is renowned for being one of the slowest on the network, but today that would suit us just fine. With the hose connected we started to fill up, I had a phone call to make about some possible work next year. Now Lynda can talk, but by the time we’d finished our conversation our tank was full, Mick had moved us off the water point closer to the locks and another boat had almost finished filling it’s tank!
We worked our way up the three paired locks. One boat headed downhill towards us. The top two locks have three paddles out of order, so the chamber we’d chosen took forever to fill. Once they’ve finished at Braunston maybe they should try to get these working a touch better, they are after all the most used locks in the country.
Further along the building works are on going, but set back from the canal at the moment. Houlton will be huge, Will it extend down to the canal or will the banks of wild flowers remain?
On along Barby Straight, the old ambulance long gone, but giraffes graze the trees and a witch hovers in a well, it gives you something to photograph. The moorings between 78 and 79 were very full so we were surprised at those outside Dunchurch Pools Marina having plenty of space.
Here Tilly was allowed two hours. Last time we stayed here she was out well past dark. Today Tilly stayed out for three and a half hours, returning for a pit stop only for the doors to remain shut for the night.
3 locks, 5.93 miles, 1 cooked breakfast, 0 boxes wine, 1 chicken, 1 huge bridge, 1 monster development, 1 house up to rent, 1 witch, 1 Mrs Tilly stamp of approval.
1 Mooring good for cats but not that much else!