A Weekend Away. Breach 49. 13th 14th May

Goole to Newbridge

This morning the marina was busy. A big cruiser was lowered into the water, then backed away from the slings on the lift. It reversed it’s way out of view before an older yellow cruiser came to replace it, ready to be lifted out. Once on dry land Geoff set to jet washing it’s bottom.

Preparing to move the outside is very exciting for our second mate

With no need to be in Goole for the next few days, we decided to have a weekend away. So after doing the chores, filling the water tank, emptying the wee tank, disposing of the rubbish we untied our ropes and pushed off.

Our normal routine of me giving the bow a BIG push did not work today as the wind was coming from the wrong side. So the stern was pushed out past NB Summer Wind into the gap between pontoons. Once we’d got so far the wind then caught the bow and started to push that round enabling us to turn without getting too matey with any neighbours.

Busy today

It was busy out there! A narrowboat heading in to the diesel point at the Boathouse, David/Paul and Karl tucked into the corner and the boat formerly known as Harlequin just pulling out from the water point. We headed past waving to everyone as we left, maybe next time we pull away from Viking Marina it will be for the last time.

Wharf at Rawcliffe Bridge

It being a grey day the four miles back out to Newbridge was a little bit dull. A few fishermen to break up the long straight lengths of the navigation. I wondered what industry had been along this stretch. Two wharfs opposite Rawcliffe Marina and another a bit further on by the Sugar Mill Ponds. Now that name was a clue, but not to the industry that started on the site.

Another wharf outside Croda Chemicals

In 1838 Rawcliffe Brickworks stood on the site, the clay was dug by hand from the adjacent land. In 1873 the works were modernised and a 30m high chimney was added to the site. Rumour has it that the two clay pits filled with water in the 1870’s overnight creating the ponds. 1890 the site was sold and sugar was refined here, made from the local sugar beet. By 1900 the factory was completely modernised, but the bottom had fallen out of the sugar industry, so the factory never opened, although locals were still employed to keep the machines in working order.

By the Sugar Mill Ponds

After WW2 the factory produced glucose, closing in 1963. Then Croda Chemicals who had a plant on the other side of the village used the site for storage. By the 1980’s the site had become redundant and derelict, but since 1996 the ponds have been rejuvenated into a wildlife haven. Further info on the Sugar Mill Ponds.

Cofferdam ahead

We pulled in on the southern side of the cut, a short distance behind WB Lullabelle.

Hopefully at the end of the wooded area we will get some sunlight for our solar panels, Tilly can climb trees and we won’t be in the way of any fishing matches over the weekend (14 orders for Sunday breakfast have already been placed).

Forth time lucky!

A forth attempt at the Inn backdrop was started during the afternoon along with baking Mick a loaf of Country Grain bread and preparing gluten free pizza dough. It had been slightly chilly in the boat so Mick lit the stove, but by the time the bread was cooked followed by two pizzas it felt like we were in the middle east, even Tilly ended up sitting on the bathroom floor!

Tuna pizza

Yesterday Mark visited the breach site, the first opportunity to fly his drone safely for a while.


We’d noticed on our walk the other day that rusty piling had been removed from the bank and some rather long lengths of new piling were sat on the access road. Today we could see what they were being used for.


The hole in the grass has gone and there is now access for machinery on the western side of the drain.


Here the large piling is being put in on the drain side.


The size of it can be appreciated by this photo of three men sitting on one length.

13/5/21 Old piling left standing by the yellow digger

You can also see that some of the concrete (?) behind the old piling has been removed, leaving a narrower stretch of the original concrete above the drain.


Thank you Mark.

In other news a C&RT notice came through this afternoon saying the following regarding Selby Swing Bridge

Update on 14/05/2021:

Contractors and other parties involved in the works have conducted a site assessment and decided on plans to install a passenger footbridge. Assessment have also been made for the safe removal of the Road Bridge and these works are looking to be done as soon as possible.

Once the road bridge has been lifted the navigation will be reopened. Please expect some disruption when the passenger footbridge is installed which we are anticipating maybe for a couple of days. The expected duration of all the works involving the removal and installation of the footbridge will be 3 months.

York is going to be quiet this summer.

0 locks, 3.92 miles, 1 windy wind, 1 escape flotilla met, 6 hours! 4th go, 0 oil for the gear box, 1 loaf, 2 pizzas, 1 extreamly toasty boat.