Friday, 12 August 2016

Towpath motorbike; reaching parts others fear to tread

We had time to look round the town of Stourbridge this morning. We bought a pair of sandals each. Mine cost £3.49. I don't know how much Jan's were but I should think they were at least ten times the cost of mine Jan's were seven times the cost of mine as hers were new. Jan also treated herself to a haircut while I was looking for a new foil for my shaver. (No foil found, but temporary liquid ballast (beer) was obtained.) The economy of Stourbridge must have got quite a boost today.

After lunch on board we set off. At Coalbourne Brook Bridge we stopped to have a look round the small-scale glass industries/studios. We had a very good explanation of glass etching and saw some glass blowing. Pics to follow at some point if I remember.

At Wordsley Junction we turned right to go up the Stourbridge Locks. This flight was unusual in that every single lock was set for us. All I had to do was push open the bottom gates - I didn't have to wind a single bottom paddle. Progress was swift, then, up these closely-spaced locks.

As we exited the top lock a noisy mini motorbike came along the towpath.

Not only was he riding illegally on the towpath, but the towpath was closed for resurfacing works.

At the top of the locks - more photos to come but I'm saving on data - we carried straight on to the Fens Branch. At Brockmoor Junction we again carried straight on, slowly, past Nicholson's indicated "limit of navigation" until we decided that perhaps we'd gone far enough and we ought to reverse. This is how far we got, half way between the railway bridge and Crescent Lane Bridge. That's Crescent Lane Bridge in front ...

... and this is looking back to the old railway bridge.

Then we turned into the Stourbridge Extension Canal and reached the very end.

There was hardly any rubbish and these little-used canals were surprisingly deep. Back at Leys Junction we turned left to traverse the remaining couple of miles of the Stourbridge Canal, mooring at the bottom of Delph Locks. The sun was out, making this a lovely section.

We ate at the Tenth Lock pub, a Marston's house. Tomorrow we'll nip up the Delph Eight, stop at Merry Hill for a big enough Boots for the shaver foil and push on to Parkhead. I'm very keen to try out the tunnel gauge.

4 comments:

Bill.S said...

Fens: Very Nice. Have you looked at for an 1880s view. Lots to walk around!
Regards

Bill.S said...

Oh, my comment didn't tansmit the url.
I'll try again
http://maps.nls.uk/view/101597660

Halfie said...

Thanks Bill, that map is fascinating. Impossible to imagine what it was like with all that heavy industry and the smoke and smells. Unfortunately we didn't have time for a full exploration by foot, but the old railway line with mature trees between the rails was interesting!

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