Narrowboat Tacet

Silent Movement - Our gap year travelling the inland waterways

Thursday 12 January 2012

We have a signal!

Yesterday we had no internet signal, so no update possible.
Let's catch up....
Tuesday was spent in Banbury, museum, shops, town walk, and cinema.
Ride a cock horse
Who the fine lady was is a mystery

to Banbury Cross
This cross was built in 1859 to commemorate the wedding of Queen Victoria's eldest daughter.
Banbury once had 3 medieval crosses; but these were destroyed by Puritans in 1601.

Whately Hall

Whately Hall was a central part of the town's social life in the 18th century.  It was here that a meeting was held to raise money for the construction of the Oxford Canal.

The Reindeer Inn

A courtyard inn dating from the 16th century. It was owned by the Knight family in 1570 as can be seen on the gates.

In the evening we went to see The Iron Lady at the cinema. Meryl Streep has Mrs T to a T! Although not a fan of Maggie and her time in government, this film was an interesting look at her drive and passion to 'do something' for her country; and moving as she struggles with dementia,missing the support of Dennis.

We travelled from Banbury to Lower Heyford.  On the way we saw......

Kings Sutton Lock house

Former Blacksmiths shop

Approaching Aynho weir lock, here the river Cherwell meets and crosses the canal.

Aynho Weir lock, wider, but very shallow, as coming next is....

Somerton Deep Lock

Transport to the lock house

At Somerton there is no road access to the lock house, the nearest road is over half a mile down the canal, so apart from walking along the towpath this boat is essential transport. I guess there is no main services to the house either, there was certainly a generator running as we passed.

We have again enjoyed the sunshine and rural views all around.

So glad these new lift bridges are fixed open. I can remember cruising along here some 20+ years ago, (pre-children) and the old wooden bridges were so heavy to lift, especially when wet, I just didn't have enough weight to move some.
We moored up just below Allen's Bridge at Upper Heyford.
11 miles, 8 locks

We had a wander around Upper Heyford before setting off this morning.

The Church and tithe barn alongside the canal.  The village of Heyford was home to a US air-force base until 1993, a memorial in the churchyard reminds of their association with the forces.

Poignant, straight rows of military gravestones, many of the young men only 19 or early 20's. Same age as our son.

We were too early to go into the church, so moved on.

In the churchyard this tree, full of fruit, making a lovely splash of colour on a winter morning.

On our way to Thrupp we passsed this tree house, once lovely, a little dangerous now. I think it must have been fun playing there.

These lovely fluffy calves were enjoying the sun and a drink,

this one was paddling too.

Shipton Weir lock another 'diamond' shape along this stretch of the canal that sometimes merges with the river Cherwell.

Some of the paddle gear has OCC stamped on them. Oxford Canal Company.

Filling up with water at Thrupp, lots of long term moorers here, some liveaboards too.

Through the lift bridge to the visitor moorings.
8 miles, 5 locks, 3 bridges


  1. Hi Ian and Karen. Such a lovely stretch on the South Oxford Canal, we love that area and looking forward to it when we head down to the Thames in March. Glad the weather is so mild for you, its almost spring like. Enjoying your pictures as always. Doug

  2. I especially love your last photo. The quality of light is beautiful.

    I must go and see the Iron Lady. Like you, I was never a fan of our first (and only) woman prime minister, but the film looks very interesting.