Sunday 5th July – Day 27
We left this morning at 8:00am (yes you read it right) and were at Hilmorton Locks just after 9 and motoring away from the top lock 40 minutes later.
Past Clifton Wharf and under the new Houlton Bridge (serving the new Houlton housing development) I think Brutalist might be the school of architecture.
We passed Hillmorton Wharf Marina from where we started our first hire-boat holiday in 1983, then along the Barby Straight, and moored near Barby Wood Bridge to watch the Sunday Service from Rising Brook Church.
Midday saw us on the move again with sandwiches on the go and the wind blowing a hooley. At the new(ish) Dunchurch Pools Marina it was blowing across the marina and did it’s best to push us into the off-side bank!
By 1:30 pm we tied up at Braunston Visitor moorings near the A45 bridge. TV reception was non-existent, but there was just enough internet to watch Shirley Valentine on YouTube, amazing to think that was released over 30 years ago.
Monday 6th July – Day 28
Immediately we started to emerge we spotted Jules Fuels coming along with a motor and butty so hurriedly had to reverse to allow them to turn the other way.
We travelled past the wonderfully named Braunston Puddle Banks, Wolfhamcote, Lower Shuckburgh, past Napton Junction to the bottom of Napton Locks; taking the obligatory photo of Napton Windmill (see header), all the while debating whether to stop for lunch before the locks as it kept spotting with rain.
In the end, we started up the nine locks at 12:30 with sheep and buffalo (yes, really, they’re famous around here) in the fields alongside, mooring above Adkins Lock at 2:30 leaving the final two locks for tomorrow.
Tuesday 7th July – Day 29
This morning we were away at a quarter to nine, both locks were against us as another boat left before us, but it was easy enough and we were soon on our way across the twist and turns of the summit level. All was going swimmingly, despite the low water level, until we rounded a corner and a boat was just pulling out and we, plus three hire boats, followed it at tickover for the next hour and a half until they moored near Wormleighton Radio Mast.
We passed Hill Farm Glamping with it’s wood-fired hot tub, and less attractively spoil heaps concerned with HS2
We arrived at Fenny Compton Wharf by 12:50 pm and found plenty of room to moor, unfortunately, the hedgerows have been neglected and they have grown so high it’s very dark here at the moment, maybe we can find a brighter spot later.