Friday, 4 January 2008

Retracing family footsteps.

Still moored at Cosgrove

A busy day started with Tim Garland arriving just after 9am to collect our cratch cover. While sorting things out in the cratch I discovered a stowaway in the form of a very healthy field mouse. He had made a home in the paint locker chewing up rags and feeding on nuts and seeds from Dot's bird feeders stored in the cratch. The feeders will have to be stored in a more secure manner in future. After taking everything out of the locker I managed to guide the mouse off the boat via a piece of wood from a drain hole onto the bank.

As the locker was empty I decided I may as well do something about the rust. Out came the grinder and all the heavy rust was soon history. Once it was all nice and clean I then gave it all a good coating of Owatrol rust treatment which I have to leave for 24 hours before I can undercoat it.

I had just finished tidying up when Tim arrived back with the repaired cover which was back on in less than 3 hours. Now that's what I call SERVICE. I can thoroughly recommend Garland Hoods to anybody requiring new covers or repairs carried out.

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As the boat was now secure again we decided to take our planned walk along the Buckingham Arm to retrace my ancestors footsteps with temperatures sitting around 1.5deg C. Once past the moored boats in the only section in water we came across the bridge that was temporarily dammed in 1944 to secure the route from the Midlands to London but the dam was never removed.

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Along the way we came across about 10 hardy volunteers who were busy removing new saplings and rubbish from the canal bed even though it was trying to snow. They had built numerous bonfires which helped to keep them warm in their endeavours. Apparently the Buckingham Canal Society has obtained the services of a surveyor but the canal bed needs to be cleared and benchmarks placed along the towpath before the end of March. We carried on to the end of the first section which has been cut off by the A5 dual carriageway which is where locks and a tunnel or Aqueduct are going to be required to get past this roadway. To my minds eye this canal wouldn't take much to re-open but BW are not in a position to do anything so it's all going to be down to volunteers and donations. Any body interested in helping in what ever way they can, can contact the society or the Membership Secretary, BCS 33 Hambleton Grove, Emerson Valley, Milton Keynes MK4 2JS.

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The volunteers go out 3 times a month, on the 2nd Sunday and the 2nd and 4th Thursday of each month. Anybody able to help can contact the chairman (Athina Beckett) on 01908 661217.

870 locks, 1180 miles, 33 Tunnels, 40 swing bridges and 19 lift bridges since Nov 2006

3 comments:

******** said...

Happy New Year to you both. May 2008 be a wonderful cruising year for you both. If we are fortunate we may get to meet you along the way.
Kind regards.
Jo

Mike said...

Happy new year both, well done with your photos, they are lovely.
Hope you got my email.

And remember, you are being watched, hee-hee.

Kind regards Pat x

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