Wednesday, 12 September 2018

Cleaning lock gates on the Grand Union

A short day today: Weedon to Buckby Top. As we left Weedon we went under the new bypass bridge.

The bypass route has been chosen such that it crosses the canal and the West Coast Main Line railway at their closest point to each other, needing only one bridge. There's the very end of a Virgin train disappearing behind the pillars in the photo.

This section of canal is well endowed with interesting boats. The Jules Fuels pair look good laden.

What is the penguin-like structure on this Dutch barge, Frieslan?

The camping boat, William, with its Bolinder engine, lives along here, as well as a good few ex-GUCCCos and Joshers.

Coming up the Buckby flight we had to wait for a few minutes while CRT and volunteers pressure washed the gates.

They were making a good job of it, removing plants and moss. We've encountered countless gates on our travels where you can hardly see the wood for the trees growing out of it. Oh, all right, perhaps not trees, but plant life in profusion - and probably saplings too.

We got to the top at lunch time and decided to stay put. It was a quick and easy cycle back down the A5 in the sunshine to get the car - only four miles compared with yesterday's 11.2. Tomorrow it's Braunston and (probably) beyond.


Mike Todd said...

We have encountered the same operation in the past - I get the feeling that it is a particular feature of the approach adopted by the team responsible for this part of the GU as I have not seen it regularly done elsewhere. I'm sure there's a proper explanation . . .

stevecarter said...

The penguin-like structure on Frieslan is the entrance hatch. It rotates downwards to close and then looks like the curved section of bodywork on the opposite side.

Halfie said...

Thank you, Stephen.