She Swallowed A…. 29th September

Gurnett Aqueduct to Clarence Mill

I’m growing concerned for my safety.

The other day She was complaining that a fly had flown at speed into her mouth. Then a day or two later as She drank her cup of tea she suddenly spat it out, a large spider was lurking in the depths of her mug! So far I’ve not noticed any birds being consumed, but they may have chicken tonight. I’m keeping my distance, just in case.

If you don’t hear from me again I’ll have been sent in to sort things out!

A curvy accommodation bridge

Slow progress at times along the summit pound today. The levels have been down up here, but this morning it only looked to be an inch lower than the overflow at the aqueduct. At one point we were passing another boat to find both of us were sat on the bottom!

We pootled our way through Macclesfield, familiar local boats from our winter up here five years ago. Bridge 43 is another roving bridge with a high wall concealing an accommodation bridge nestled up alongside it.

The off side vegetation was getting a strim as we crossed above the houses. Then we hunkered down under the big wall that holds the top part of Macclesfield away from the canal.

The site where a culvert had problems a few months ago is only obvious now by the new mortar in amongst the stones of the canal bank, a new top to the dry stone wall and a large pile of aggregate hiding behind. The canal was closed for sometime earlier this year.

At least it hasn’t taken as long as the wall by Black Road Bridge. This used to hold someone’s garden up off the towpath and has gradually disintegrated through the years. At least this towpath closure is sturdier than the one in Wolverhampton that people just ignored.

Passed the Hovis Mill the 1 day moorings were just about full, we’ve very rarely seen boats moored here as it’s been hard to pull in and you are requested not to run your engine. The pontoon moorings were full, the end boat being NB Rosie out for a cruise from Teapot Hall.


As we pootled along we discussed a topic that people often ask. Which is your favourite canal? Well our favourite mooring is above Bank Newton Locks, the curley wurlys on the Leeds Liverpool. But is our favourite canal the Macc? A lovely flight of locks, little industry, great hills and views, a reliable coal boat to look after you, the beautiful bridges. It might just be our favourite.

Clark Lane Bridge

A strange noise could be heard as we reached the far side of Macclesfield. Raaaag aaaandd Boooooonnne! As we moved round the tone of the call changed, Rag and Bone through a loud hailer was echoing around the streets.

A little porch

Then Clark Lane Bridge curls the towpath back to the otherside, at Kerridge someone has built themselves a little porch.

Adelphi Mill, Bollington

Then as it started to rain a little bit more heavily we came round under Greens Bridge to the sight of the Adelphi Mill. Today lots of room on the visitor moorings, but we were after pulling in at Bollington Wharf, their service mooring empty.

A Bollington Day Boat

A chap was having a couple of containers filled with red diesel and chatted to Ann Marie. Then it was our turn to fill up Oleanna’s tank, the price higher than we’d paid at Hawne Basin a few weeks ago, but that’s hardly surprising. This morning Bollington Wharf had had a delivery, the price per litre having risen by 8p. Last Saturday they’d had a bit of a rush on with four boats queued up for a top up. Brian arrived and sorted out five bags of coal for us, positioning them on our roof mats as low as he could get them. If you are ever on the Macc this is where to come for a top up of diesel or bits of work that need doing. Last year they mended a gas locker hinge for us whilst we waited. There is also NB Alton that does a fortnightly run along the summit pound, so they will come to you. They certainly looked after us the winter we were here.

The bright colours of the diesel pump and day boats cheered up a thoroughly wet day. Nice to have a catch up too.

Clarence Mill

We pushed off and now hoped for a space on the embankment by the aqueduct. This was chocka block, not even a nudge around would have made enough space for us. But luckily round the bend in the shadow of Clarence Mill the newish bollards were empty. We pulled up and claimed them.

Handy bollards

Whilst finishing battening down the hatches for the day, an alarm sounded. Not the sound of Mick pressing the button to stop the engine, it was a different pitch. ‘That’s not meant to happen is it?’ ‘No’ The engine was over heating, just as well Mick was about to turn it off. This first happened on the Thames a couple of years ago, a loose pipe connecting the calorifier to the engine. It had come loose again , therefore there wasn’t enough water in the cooling system.

Everyone round here loves White Nancy

We managed a shopping trip down to the Co-op to stock up on chocolate between showers and then just left Tilly to explore the wet outside for the remainder of the afternoon. She did her best to get really quite soggy. I revisited the budget for #unit21, still need an updated price on a couple of things. News came through from Chippy that sight lines had been checked with a mock up of a tower made from cardboard and that my paint order had been placed. So at least I’ll have lots of lovely colours to play with.

Could this be our nosy neighbour from this evening?

Later in the afternoon Mick lifted the engine boards and sure enough the pipe was loose again. He checks this and tightens it on every service. The next service is due in 40 hours. So maybe an in between services check is required.

It turns out that there is at least one train driver who keeps a note of passing boaters in Stoke. Thank you Michael for your email. We’ll keep a beady eye open for you when we’re next on your patch and wave until you see us. Michael’s boat was one of those stuck in Goole this year, hope the move up the Ouse wasn’t too wet and windy for you today.

0 locks, 4.58 miles, 88 litres, 0 panic buying, 1 feline visitor twice, 2nd time being very nosy, 100kg coal, 530grams dark chocolate, 500grams granulated sugar, 1 rag and bone, 1 alarm, 1 loose pipe, 1 wet day.