Monday, 7 September 2015

Stafford Riverway Link

Today was the last day of the Boaters' Christian Fellowship (extended) weekend at The Taft, near Rugeley. We had a final time of worship in the morning, during which a dragonfly came into the marquee and couldn't find its way out again. John P. managed to capture it in his hands, but when he took it outside to release it it paused long enough on his finger for me to take a photo.

After saying our good byes (to our fellow BCFers, not the dragonfly) we set off up to Great Haywood where we filled and emptied the usual tanks. I bought an air filter from the Anglo Welsh base and popped it in. It's the first air filter change I have done in three and a half years of ownership - am I a very bad boy? Before putting it in I cleaned the inside of the housing. Thje first couple of damp paper towels took off a huge amount of black dust; only by the third one did it all come clean. As I clipped the lid back on I did wonder whether I should have lightly smeared the inside of the housing with oil. Would this be a good idea to trap dust particles?

I called into Great Haywood Marina to see about a new float switch. They had one, but it was £27 which seemed a bit pricey. I left it hoping to find a cheaper one later.

We reversed back to the junction and turned onto the Staffs and Worcs, passing Kew at Tixall Wide. We would meet up with them at Penkridge later.

On the way we passed this interesting signpost at Baswich, just outside Stafford. There's a bit of a home-made look about the writing, although the signpost itself looks the job.

The fingerposts pointing to Great Haywood and Wolverhampton are as expected, but normal to them are pointers to River Canal Rescue in one direction and Stafford opposite. I think the Stafford Riverway Link has been in the waterways press, but I can't remember many details, such as a timescale for completion. I think the idea is to make part of the River Sow navigable and connect it to the Staffs and Worcs by a lock, but I might be wrong. So why the sign to RCR? Well, their headquarters are on the other side of the canal here.

This evening the four of us (David, Mary, Jan and I) walked the few paces from where we'd tied up to the Boat pub for a meal. The food was good, but it took a very long time to arrive (as in an hour plus). We were offered drinks/coffees/puddings on the house by way of compensation.

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