Narrowboat Tacet

Silent Movement - Our gap year travelling the inland waterways

Wednesday, 12 September 2012

Ellesmere Port

Another catch up post, this is what we were up to last weekend.

We've been up to Ellesmere Port where for the cost of entry to the National Waterways Museum we could moor Tacet in one of the old dock's basins. So we have been living in a museum again. We had a good day looking around at all the old boats, and around the old dock buildings and workers cottages.

One of the Liverpool boats, wide beam barges that worked the Leeds & Liverpool Canal
A William Stevens boat built and worked on the River Wey

 Scorpio a wooden Liverpool boat, but longer than most so could only be worked from Wigan carrying coal. She would have been drawn by horse then in later years by tug boat.

The toll house

A British Waterways working boat in the original blue and yellow livery.

And inside the cabin.
The locks going down to the lower basins of the port or out onto the Manchester Ship Canal. There is a set of wide locks as well as these narrow locks. They are having a bit of a problem with floating weed this year; water fern and pennywort are covering some areas, so the water is not seen at all.

 Inside one of the old warehouses is the lovely old narrowboat Friendship, once owned and worked by Joe and Rose Skinner and their mule, Dolly, an old war horse. They were the last of the 'number ones', people who owned and worked their own boat. They carried coal on the Oxford and Coventry Canals for over 40 years and were well known figures at Hawkesbury Junction where for many years after retirement  they had a cottage, but only used it during the daytime for cooking and eating, preferring to go back to their cosy cabin on Friendship to sleep each night.

The cruiser Amaryllis, built in the 1950's was one of the first pleasure cruisers to be built as the working life of the canal came to an end. She is a lovely example of highly varnished mahogany covering oak planking.
As you can see by the shadow, we enjoyed the day in lovely warm sunshine too. We've had good summer weather this past week.


  1. Is that water weed all around Scorpio, or is she half on bank?

  2. She was half submerged and surrounded by weed too.