Sandfield Bridge

Monday 21st June 2021

I realised over the weekend that we hadn’t filled up with diesel since leaving Stourport and the level was somewhat low, so this morning we departed Slimbridge & headed for Joe Energy at Fretherne who have a depot in part of what was once the Cadbury’s factory there.  In a previous life I used to service a forklift at Cadburys and once was given a large bag of misshaped Creme Eggs which meant I’ve never touched one since. We took on 128 litres of diesel (I thought the tank only held 130!) and felt a lot happier to have plenty of fuel for the return trip. The base price here is 75p/litre compared with 82p at Saul Marina.

We were pulling off when a passing boat waved us ahead as they were headed for Saul Services, but before passing through Sandfield Bridge we spotted a 14 day mooring free opposite the grain silo so made a bee line for it.

Tuesday 22nd June 2021

We awoke this morning to activity on the wharf opposite and a peep from behind the curtains revealed a gihugeous crane and three lorries positioning themselves.

It turned out that they were taking away two widebeam hopper barges and a push tug Henry belonging to Rothens the contractors which we had spotted on our way out of Gloucester being used for some towpath improvement work.

We spent an entertaining hour watching other people working.

I later learned that Sandfield Marine & Storage had now taken over the wharf here and were in action again on Thursday craning out no less than seven boats onto the hard-standing for blacking or maintenance I imagine.

Wednesday 23rd Thursday 24th June 2021

I started some long overdue repainting of the Swan-Neck (the Z shaped bit the tiller attaches to) and it’s starting to look better with all the scuffs & rust removed although I’m not the most skilful painter, the paint having a habit of ending up on my body instead of where intended.