The Four Counties Ring edited 03/01/2011


I have re done the four counties ring holiday page. Some context was needed first to establish where we are, when etc. We picked up the hire boat from Great Haywood and decided to travel anti-clockwise, so up the Trent and Misery we went.

The trip is picture oriented with many shots of bridges as we went along. Next trip I will add times etc. to provide some journey time. We were not in a hurry, two weeks to include some slower days and trips near the canal (not many of the latter though).

The first is a picture of me just after boat handover from Anglo Welsh at Great Haywood.   The boat, Dentdale, was a 58ft cruiser with four berths.  Nice start to the day, the handover was quick and comfortable.  The boat was in very good condition, some photos as we go along.  This picture was taken at 14.15 on 2/8/08

Bridge 76 first, located at Hoo Mill lock (I will add the Nicholsons page number as we go along like - p 123 for this picture). Taken at 14.37.

And from behind - (careful!) at 14.53

Bridge 77 appears at 15.04

This was taken at 15.55, interesting wee tug.

3rd August at 08.31, we had moored up in the gap you see
This was the first overnight, not exactly sure where it was, any ideas?
Bridge 80 at Weston upon Trent – 08.33
The over exposure of the sky will be adjusted for future pictures by a camera filter.

Bridge 81

Arrived at 08.41, no rushing on this holiday but pretty good speed was made thus far nonetheless.  It was quite quiet apart from a looney who could not steer and hit us rounding a bend whilst we were moored.  Typical group of newbies who did not, or would not, listen to any advice given.  The driver threw her arms in the air after hitting us, swore at her companions and abruptly left for the cabin.

Bridge 82, quite interesting design – Salt Bridge. Not a lot I can say as the history about the bridge is limited. I did attempt to find more about the design, sadly nothing discovered thus far, do you know more? mail me if you do – 09.00 p 142

Sara, helping her dad moor up 09.35 at the lock next to Bridge 83

And guess what? the lock at Bridge 83 - 09.36

Carefully positioned spares with its own little roof

Bridge 84 -  09.59, note the line still in the centre of the boat, now who left it there?

Bridge 85 10.13 – Lower Burston Bridge p 145
I think this is Burston Hall, happy to be corrected

Bridge 86 at 10.18

Mrs, obviously concentrating (eyes closed?)

Bridge 87 10.24

Bridge 88 10.33

Bridge 89 at 10.42

Aston Lock 3 August 10.38 page 144

Aston Lock, waiting our turn 10.52

Bridge 90 - Aston Bridge 11.13 p144

Brassworks Bridge 91?

Bridge 92 Andre Mills Bridge 11.27

Bridge 94- 14.08

Bridge 95 15.10

Nice signal box, no railway though!

Bridge 96a - 15.11
Lock 33 - Meaford Road Lock 16.00

Bridge 98 and Meaford Top lock 15.59 p147

Bridge 99 Siddalls Bridge 16.16

Bridge 100 and, err, Sarah
Bridge 101 16.31

Bridge 102 16.38

Bridge 103, I think - Page 25 on pearsons guide - four counties ring 16.34

The girls, 3 August at 17.05 just shy of Bridge 104, near Wedgwood

You guessed it, Sarah throwing a pot at Wedgwood 4th august at 11.20 am
 A really good day at Wedgwood, the guided tour was excellent as was the pot throwing, taught by a master potter, a must visit.

Just leaving wedgwood at 12.02 pm om 4/8

Bridge 104a 12.19

Bridge 105 at 12.21

Bridge 105a 12.27
 Hem Heath, not a lot abouts.
Bridge 10612.33 - longton Road
 When we go on our next trip I will be taking my voice recorder which should help to capture much more info such as quality of morrings, shops etc.
The girls 12.57

Bridge 108 12.57

Bridge 109 13.18

Possibly Bridge 111 13.27

Possibly 113 13.32

Possibly 113 still 13.38

Ah, 114 13.38
 Now, here is the centre of Stoke.  We moored here waiting for the lock no 36.  One of the paddles was broken and we had about a 2 hour wait, during which some idiot threw a bottle out of a van which hit the boat and missed my wife by about 8 inches.

15.38 just before lock 37

Lock 37 at 15.55
 Becasue of the delay for lock 36, quite a queue was developing so we had company for the rest of the day, although not catching up fast enough to help at the lock.  The girls were quite capable though.

17.37, not sure where though

17.40 again past stoke but not sure where

17.42 no idea where

17.46, same problem, i think bridge 123, just before middleport pottery



bridge 127 or thereabouts 18.08

aha Westport Lake, just before 128 19.15 Page 7 of Pearsons.
This was our overnight stop prior to the Harecastle Tunnel.  Weather was fine and the mooring was very good with lots of other boats moored up.

5th August at 8.01

Bridge 128 5/8 at 08.13


Bridge 129 at 08.19

Bridge 130 08.27

The Harecastle Tunnel, South Portal; 09.42 5/8