Tuesday, 14 July 2009

Wigan! Liverpool here we come

3 Locks, 5½ Miles, 1 Lift bridge. Now moored above lock 87.

By the time we had watered up at Plank Lane lift bridge we had accumulated a convoy of three other boats to pass through the lift bridge which was probably a bit of shock to the BW lift keeper. With the wide canal and deep water we managed a nice turn of speed without creating any wash. It was just like being on the Thames or Great Ouse. 

Leeds and Liverpool 013 The first lock in Wigan heading towards the Rufford branch for the Lancaster Canal or Liverpool Docks.

Leeds and Liverpool 015Looking back at lock 86 Leeds & Liverpool Canal, Wigan.

We locked down with a local boat who was returning to his moorings so we were able to get first hand knowledge of the area. We pulled onto the 48 hour moorings right outside the BW Wigan office which is all fenced and secure. We called into the office to see if there was any possibility of a passage into Liverpool docks this week. After filling in the necessary paperwork, which they are in the process of simplifying we handed them back into the office and within 15 minutes we had our booking. Apparently this is not the normal way to book a passage but the staff were very helpful. They are in the process of setting up bookings on line but you will need a copy of your insurance and boat safety certificate which is for the Port of Liverpool authorities not BW as they already have it on record.

Leeds and Liverpool 016 BW dry dock in Wigan with 2 boats in situ under going blacking and painting. Lock 87 to the right.

After getting this sorted out we walked into town for a look and a bit of shopping. There are signs of redevelopment around the town but there also still plenty of chimney’s and mills from days gone by.

Leeds and Liverpool 017 Trencherfield Mill which is now apartments but retains a small museum of mill and mining equipment. This is an air fan for ventilating a mine.

Leeds and Liverpool 019 Steam powered hammer built 1862 for making crank shafts, connecting rods and print rollers.

1717 locks, 3570 miles, 66 Tunnels, 52 swing bridges and 53 lift bridges since Nov 2006

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