Narrowboat Tacet

Silent Movement - Our gap year travelling the inland waterways

Saturday, 31 August 2013

More Weavering

The Weaver is a lovely river, just 4 locks which are manned and worked for you. It has green views, across the fields, up to the Trent & Mersey canal and woodlands.  It has industrial views, salt works, ici chemical works, old docks and of course the Anderton lift.  It has towns to stop at, of varying interest, Northwich, Winsford, and Frodsham.  It has some lovely quiet moorings too.

P1040308It is in Cheshire and even the bridges are painted black and white, not just the famous Cheshire buildings.
At Northwich the wharf area is being developed with new pontoons for mooring and a large building which I’m told will be a Waitrose store.
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At Hunts lock, with the high railway viaduct crossing the river just below it.

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Vale Royal locks.
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Salt works

Saltersford locks


                                                         Leaving Dutton Locks

On our walk this evening we walked along the part of the river at Frodsham that we couldn’t take Tacet along, Ian wanted to find the old lock that is marked on the map there.......
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While I went foraging along the hedgerows, finding damsons and plums, so a bit more jam making tonight.
Vale Royal – Frodsham, 14 miles, 4 locks.

Friday, 30 August 2013

Weavering Along


We’ve taken a bit of a detour in our journey to the Lancaster Canal for the final leg of our ‘gap year(s)’.  We had 10 days to get from Manchester to Tarleton for the Ribble link crossing, which is plenty of time, so we have come down the Bridgewater and the Trent & Mersey canals and onto the Weaver for the weekend.

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After a safe night at the site of the Dutton Hollow breach, this morning we made our way along some narrow bits of the Trent & Mersey, through two tunnels to the Anderton lift.  We had to wait a couple of hours for a slot to go down onto the river, which was fine, time to make lunch and have a wander around the lift site.

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Then it was our turn………

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Looking up……….

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Looking down……..


Half way…………

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At river level…………

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Whilst we were in Manchester for those few days, the signs of autumn have come to the hedgerows. The haws have turned red and the elderberries have blackened. We have been picking blackberries at every stop, and enjoying them in many different guises, they’re so big, sweet and juicy this year.


1. Blackberry & Apple Pie

2. Blackberry & Plums in syrup

3. Blackberry & Apple Crumble

4. Blackberry & Lime Creams

5. Blackberries with sugar & cream

6. Bramble Jelly

Any more suggestions?


Dutton Hollow – Vale Royal, 9 miles, 2 tunnels, 1 lift, 2 locks

Thursday, 29 August 2013

Dear Deer

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I don’t think I have ever been able to walk so close to deer as we did this morning at Dunham Massey.  Although the Hall wasn’t open for visitors today the grounds and the deer park are open and free to walk around.  It was a real treat to get so near to these lovely creatures.
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Dunham Massey has a long history, and today 4 of its buildings are listed. It was a locally important area during the medieval period, and was the seat for the Massey barony.
The Georgian hall, with the remains of a castle in its grounds, is now owned by the National Trust. There has been a mill here since the 1300’s, this one dates from 1860.
During WWII the hall was used as a military hospital and next year there are plans to replicate that era for visitors to see.
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The stables and carriage hall are magnificent. Just imagine the fine horses and carriages making their way here, bringing the nobility to visit.
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The houses making up the estate village are well kept and sport the same red paintwork, creating an ordered and tidy feel.
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Here the road dips down under the canal. On the Bridgewater these are known as underbridges rather than aqueducts.

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Last night I shared this view of the Hall and grounds taken from Tacet’s side hatch………

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Today we could look the other way from the Hall to Tacet, though you need the zoom to appreciate that fact!
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A short journey on and we arrived at Lymm, a pretty village where we stopped to make use of the little Sainsbury’s and for fish’n’chips.
The village is designated a conservation area, with the village cross at its centre.

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The river running through the village has dam across, making a lovely pool with these cottages either side, a really pretty peaceful spot, with loads of fish, some of them huge.
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Another underbridge.

It’s been lovely to be cruising again after a few days moored in Manchester, and to be out in the open air, even though the clouds have been a bit threatening, there has been no rain. Now we have joined the Trent & Mersey Canal, through the Preston Brook Tunnel.
We arrived with impeccable timing at 5.30pm.  Passage through is allowed for 10 mins from the half hour, allowing 20 mins to clear the tunnel, then passage in the other direction and today we followed two cruisers through.

And we have moored up at the site of last years breach.  In September last year the bank collapsed sending the water from the canal tumbling down the embankment towards the river Weaver. The newly inaugurated C&RT were plunged into an expensive and challenging operation to repair the damage and get the canal back open again. However they stepped into the breach and in May this year the canal re-opened. I guess this should be the most secure mooring on the system at the moment!
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Looking down over the bank which collapsed towards the river Weaver.
You can watch a time lapse video of the repair work, just click here.
Dunham Massey – Dutton Hollow, 15 miles, 1 lock, 1 tunnel