Narrowboat Tacet

Silent Movement - Our gap year travelling the inland waterways

Sunday, 12 June 2011


The bottom of Field Locks where we moored for the night on Friday. They are locked at 4pm, so were too late on Friday evening to go through. But it was a very pleasant place to be, lots of walkers and cyclists passing by and nice woods to walk with Jumble.
Looking down from the bridge above the locks, Ian being arty this time!  So on Saturday morning we set off in sunshine to work the staircase with the help of a very nice lock keeper who made a good job of keeping the very leaky gates from pouring too much water into our bow.

Through Shipley we looked out for the old junction with the Bradford Canal, it was 3 miles long, shame we can't get to see our daughter there by boat.  We'll go by train instead.
And so we arrive at Saltaire. A mill town built by Sir Titus Salt in the 1850's. A Victorian philanthropist who moved his woollen textile business out of Bradford where the city had become so polluted and the housing was in such a poor state. He built a new mill beside the canal and the railway, and then built a village around it with housing for his employees, schools for the children, hospital, churches, leisure facilities and parkland. 
Looking over the road bridge where the canal runs between the original mill and a newer one built a few years later.
The church which stands opposite the mill and alongside the canal built as a congregationalist church, now a United Reformed Church.
It is very popular for weddings being in this unique Italianate style. There was a wedding going on today unfortunately in the rain. We took this photo yesterday in the sunshine.
Inside the church, looking back to the entrance. The Salt's gallery can be seen above the door. But they didn't use it, Sir Titus had the lights lowered so they were in the way and preferred to sit in the pews.
The organ is quite impressive.
The three storey houses were used as lodging houses for single workers.
The houses with front gardens were for the foremen of the factory.
Some opened straight onto the street, and these were for the lower paid employees.
All the houses had a water supply, gas lighting, an outdoor privy, separate living and cooking spaces and several bedrooms. A great improvement for the workers.
Saltaire is now recognised on the UNESCO World Heritage list as one of the best nineteenth century 'model villages'.
The mill now houses among other things a large gallery of David Hockney's art.
We have enjoyed spending time in Saltaire and have been able to visit our daughter in Bradford too.


  1. Interested to know where you managed to moor. We found, no space on the 7 day moorings by Salt Wharf. the first moorings were for 1 boat and 24 hr - but not to moor there when the waterbus was due !- but no timetable given and only 6 hour moorings on the Saltair Visitor Moorings. We also really wanted to visit this superb place but could not find an overnight mooring

  2. Hi - Glad you enjoyed Saltaire. I noticed your boat by Salts Mill but I didn't take a photo of it. (You might have found yourselves on my blog!) Enjoy the rest of your trip on the Leeds-Liverpool, especially the 5-rise locks at Bingley.

  3. Actually, I found I DID take a photo of your boat after all! So you will be on my blog. (I hope you don't mind). I really like these unexpected blogging connections - and I think some of my readers will be interested to find out a bit about your trip.

  4. Hi Jenny
    Don't mind if Tacet appears on your blog. We loved spending time in your lovely home town.

  5. Hi Huffler,
    We moored on the banks just after the Victoria Road bridge, just past the ice cream boat.
    No restrictions there and although some shallow patches we were among other boats moored up too.
    So very pleasant.

  6. Hi Ian and Karen - I've just found your lovely site through "jennyfreckles" and I hope you don't mind if I tag along on your narrowboat journey.
    "Adelaide and Beyond"

  7. Oh, how LOVELY! I'm here at the suggestion of jennyfreckles and I'll be keenly following you from now on. What a delightful coincidence that she'd spotted your boat and was able to link up with you :)

    Your pictures are super and I love your descriptions. Apart from that, I, too am envious of your 'gap year' ! What a wonderful way to celebrate your life :) I wish you continued fun, excitement and safe boating!

  8. Hi Ian and Karen,

    I'm over from JennyFreckles too. I enjoyed reading your account of Saltaire and am eager to hear more of your journey. I think a year on the Inland Waterways is a wonderful thing to be doing.

    As Jenny says, you will LOVE the Five Rise! (Leave plenty of time though and do stop off in the cafe at the top :) )

  9. Hi,
    Thanks everyone for your comments. Glad to have you along on our journey. It's a great life, we can thoroughly recommend it.
    Ian and Karen