Saturday, 24 May 2008

Woolhampton, Kennet & Avon

Our mooring in Reading turned out to be very acceptable. No breakouts from the gaol and no trouble from local drunks which is what we anticipated. In fact once it became dark it was very pleasant.
Edith managed to find us after a few phone calls back and forth and found an accommodating pub who said she could leave her car there.
Early start this morning as we wanted to be somewhere congenial for the weekend as the forecast for the next few days is not good. After the manned electric locks on the Thames the locks on the Kennet & Avon are hard work....well they are for Geoff! One of them this morning which was a turf lock was quite difficult for the folk on shore (Geoff & Edith) as there were no proper sides to the lock, just narrow metal railings so walking along was quite hazardous.
The final one of the day at Woolhampton has a very interesting approach. There is a swing bridge just before the lock and also immediately before the lock the river Kennet comes in with a strong flow. A lot of power needed here if one is not to come a cropper. Immediately opposite is a moored narrow boat at the end of someones garden which has old car tyres down it complete length...obviously he has had bad experiences!!
We arrived just before 4pm having set off before 8am....far too long a day for us...but now plan to stay here until Monday at least, and Tuesday if the weather on Monday is as forecast. Edith and I went to check the train time for her to get back to her car in Reading (for train read "Bus" as it is Sunday tomorrow and British Rail) and we also climbed a long hill to find the church for tomorrow and booked into the local pub for our Sunday lunch......

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