Leicester Ring, Second attempt

After the failed attempt to do the Leicester Ring in June, we tried again in July. Jean and Roland took the boat to Alrewas, where Howard joined. We travelled to Nottingham where Roland left and Jean and Howard continued down the Soar Navigation to Leicester where Jean left. Howard stayed aboard the boat static just North of Leicester (joined by Laurence for a couple of days) before Jean rejoined and we continued through Leicester and down the Grand Union to Gayton Marina. Mary, Laurie and Iona joined for a day to go up the Foxton staircases.

Take a look at some pictures of the trip.
See full trip statistics and map here.

Nearly back at Fazeley, when we should be at Gayton

This trip hasn’t turned out as planned. With flooding on the Trent causing an about turn at Alrewas with flood levels meaning the flood gauge was submerged, followed by a reroute down via Knowle and Hatton locks only to hit a stoppage at Bascote locks. So we turned again and are returning to Fazeley via Birmingham.

We found a good mooring in Birmingham and sightseed for a day – we’d recommend the National Trust’s Back to Back cottages. Then we were joined briefly by Mary and Laurie for a quick trip down Farmer’s Bridge flight, mooring at Aston.

Hatton Flight 24th June 2019

As I’ve been neglecting the Lady’s Smock site of late, I thought I’d share a time lapse video of ascending Hatton Flight today.


We averaged 7 minutes a lock over the 23 locks of the main 21 in the flight and 2 Cape locks.

Looking forward to another year’s cruising.

Well, still a few changes to make to fix noisy doors, and touch up the paintwork, but we are already thinking of what we will see and which canals we will cruise this year.

Our Marina (one of a group of three) has been acquired by ABC leisure group, which gives us a choice of more marinas to moor at between trips.

I have prepared a map of the Marinas and the cruising distances between them:

  Long term mooring by arrangement.
Mooring up to 30 days by arrangement

View map fullsize

Another Helmsperson

We have another Helmsperson:
Mary passed her RYA Inland Waterways Helmsman course over two days of training on the 30th-31st of May 2018. Many thanks to Chris, our patient trainer from Willow Wren.

High and dry

Dry dock

Lady’s Smock has been protected from the elements in a poly-tunnel and grit blasted in preparation for application of two-pack epoxy to the hull. This coating will protect the steel hull from the corrosive effects of canal water for a number of years and should last longer than the 2-3 years that can be achieved using currently available blacking products.

Looks like we’re almost there

Looking forward to seeing Lady’s Smock tomorrow. Hopefully all the work being done to the inside has been completed. New bunks amidships, new bed at the front and two new wardrobes. New drawers and a new table. Updated battery management and monitoring. New DAB radio and lots of new DIN 12v and USB sockets.