At 58 feet length, TQ (as we call her) is a steel hull narrow boat built by Colecraft and fitted out by Elton Moss Boatbuilders. Currently based at Aqueduct Marina in Cheshire we're able to cruise some of the most popular waterways in Britain. The Shropshire Union, The Trent and Mersey, The Llangollen Canal, The Four Counties Ring and Cheshire Ring and more.

Our friendly Syndicate decided to go down the Self Management route on 1st March 2012 and so far it has been very successful. Please visit the other pages in this blog to see the new Web Site and if shares are available for sale. (There'll not be many).

I am having to place a watermark on the blog content as someone on Facebook is stealing photos and claiming them as their own. I wouldn't mind if they asked first and attributed it to my blog. If it continues I will name and shame them. I hope it doesn't spoil your enjoyment.

All content is Copyright N. B. Tranquility © 2008 - 2019

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Friday, 27 May 2016

Busy morning, and a long journey home.

What a day, spent the morning polishing TQ and painting the port side gunwale and down to the waterline, filled the water tanks, pumped out and dieseled, then the journey home.

Left Droitwich at 3:30pm arrived home 7:50pm, should've taken two hours, the M5 was a car park.


Home again, Zzzzzzzz. 

Thursday, 26 May 2016

And back to base

Just a short journey back to the marina, but before we got going an Anglo-Welsh hire boat went hooning past us and met a Canal Club boat head on in the nearby bridge 'ole. Unfortunately the CC boat came off worse and plunged into the hedge to avoid a collision.

A lovely quiet journey back, no wind but dull which is ok. TQ is now back on her moorings and polished up to the nines, and we're off to the pub.

We strolled along the canal to the Eagle and Sun, and ordered salmon fIllet and I had a 12oz steak cooked to perfection, washed down with a pint of Doom Bar.

On our way to the Eagle and Sun.
Back on board now, and we vacate the premises tomorrow, but not before some more work is done.

Lucy? I don't think she realised we've been out...

More zeds.

Wednesday, 25 May 2016

Shortest day. 80 feet, 0 locks.

Spent most of the morning replacing some fuel hoses which were seeping a little diesel. First I had to turn off the fuel supply from the tank, that was no problem, just turn off the valve, but the return doesn't have a valve on it and if you disconnect a hose the fuel will syphon out of the tank. Aarrgghh! That's what I bought the clamp for earlier in the week, so that I could squeeze the hose to shut off the fuel. Trouble is, I couldn't squeeze it tight enough so some assistance from a pair of water pump pliers and a cable tie came to the rescue. I was able to change three hoses altogether, but there are more that will need changing later in the year.

New hose conforming to ISO7840.

And another.
 Spent the rest of the day polishing the paintwork. Used my new machine for this and made much lighter work of it. The paint was bad, really bad. Even T Cut was hard pressed to remove the oxydisation from the surface. Once the whole side was T Cut and cleaned off, I went over it with some carnauba wax polish.

You can really see the difference in this photo.
 Some grass cutting contractors came by and said they would leave the grass uncut next to TQ, so I said I would move up to a freshly cut area so that they could cut the bit where TQ was moored later when they came back. Hence the 80 feet and 0 locks.

TQ looking shiny and with a freshly cut lawn.

Tuesday, 24 May 2016

The longest day. 18.5 miles, 24 locks.

We left our moorings at 8:20 in brilliant sunshine and headed into Stourport. Through York Street Lock and onto the CaRT facilities for water. Once filled we proceeded through the "drive through" marina, and turned left toward the first of two pairs of staircase locks.

Stourport Basin

Just entered the second chamber of the first staircase locks.

Waiting for the lock to empty.

Almost empty.
 Finally we were on the River Severn, and what a contrast to the last time when we came up, cold, wet and miserable, but this time warm, bright and sunny.

Approaching Holt Lock on the Severn

A Typical Severn scene.
One of the few bridges.

There are some nice houses along the banks, this one is at the
entrance to the Droitwich Barge Canal.

Looking back up the Droitwich Barge Canal as we passed.

Approach to Bevere Lock.

I couldn't resist this photo.

The Severn Railway Bridge in Worcester.

Worcester Cathedral above Severn Bridge (if that's what it's called)

Just for laughs.

Bits revealed.
We found a nice quiet spot to moor near Bridge 25, it's not far from the motorway and we can't hear it at all.

Lucy's had a belly full of tuna...

More tomorrow...

Monday, 23 May 2016

Visitor moorings between Bridges 26 and 27 to a spot between Bridges 9 and 10.

Achieved a lot today, although again not traveled a great distance, it was a day of two halves. The first half got us into Kidderminster where we moored under the Church...

A prime photo spot is this, I tell thee.
Some shopping was done (don't be surprised) by us both. Lin bought two waterproof coats for us in the hope that there will be no more rain, and some steak and a disposable BBQ.

I bought a clamp (£2.99 in The Range), all will become clear in the next few days, and a power polishing mop. TQ's paint is really dull, it's the worst I've seen it, I've tried to polish it by hand but it's such hard work, I'll be here 'til Christmas.

We moved out to a mooring between Bridges 9 and 10, dropped the hooks in and got down to some polishing. Well that's the machine for the job, one whole side done with T-Cut. I'll put some carnauba wax on tomorrow. Looking good.

Just a cheap one from Argos, but does the job admirably.
More tomorrow...

Sunday, 22 May 2016

Rocky Lock to somewhere between Bridges 26 and 27.

Not a tremendous distance traveled today, we stopped in Kinver for some provisions and to look around the village. Quaint little place where a good attempt has been made to keep the old buildings as they should be - old. There is an old pumping station here built in the 1940's, and the brickwork looks almost new.

We stopped in The Vines for a pint of pilsner each, I had to take mine back, I think it was the first pour of the day and it was a bit brackish. No quibbles though, and the second one was much nicer.

As we walked back to TQ, it started to rain and that was a warning of what was to come.

We moved out into the countryside, found some nice pilings and dropped the hooks in, and there we stayed as later the rain hammered down.

Rocky Lock to just a short way past Kinver.

Just a short trip today, only about 4 miles, we stopped in Kinver an had a look around the village. The Co-op was open so Lin bought a few ods and ends, we took them back to the boat and then had a pint in the Vines and sat in the garden to do some gongoozling, but not a single boat came by. As we left the pub, a boat entered the lock - sods law.
After a sandwich on TQ, we moved up a ways to the 48hr visitor moorings, a pleasant spot, even in the rain. Yes, there was a shower just as we arrived.

 Lucy? She's just had her tea, going to shoot some zeds...

Saturday, 21 May 2016

From Compton Lock to Rocky Lock

Nine miles and seventeen locks today, not bad seeing as that it's raining. It's very quiet about, not many walkers or boaters, I think I've seen five on the move, must be something to do with the wet stuff dropping out from the sky. Yes, it's been a bit miserable, but it hasn't rained all day, we even had sunshine for a short while.

On the way we went through Bratch Locks:-

These are unusual in that they're not in staircase, and there is actually a pound between them, albeit just a few feet in length. So where does the water go when you empty the upper lock? There are side ponds used as a temporary reservoir to contain the excess. This is then used to fill the lower locks.

After Bratch there is the oddly named Bumble Hole Lock (don't ask) which I'm sure gets abreviated by boaters and locals alike.

I kid you not!
We pressed on in the rain to Rocky Lock where there are some lovely moorings, really quiet, haven't seen another boat or walker the whole time we've been here.

In the morning, the Sun shone.

Rocky Lock

TQ in centre of photo.
It's so quiet here.


Zzzame old, Zzzame old!

Friday, 20 May 2016

From between Bridges 21 and 22 to Compton Lock.

Another late start, and we have things to do. First we need to stop in Wheaton Aston for more fuel, well it's obligatory at their prices. Once we had fuelled, Lin went shopping in the local to top up our supplies, and I did some polishing. Then we filled the water tank before going through the lock.
We spotted a Vauxhall Omega 3.2 V6 estate down over the bank, it had a private number plate beginning with V6 xxx. It was really tatty, the tailgate was dented and the bird sh!t on the roof was an inch thick where it had been parked under the trees for ever and a day. What a shame.
Onward, and we stopped in Brewood (Brood) for lunch. A lovely spot on the visitor moorings and so quiet too.

Big boys toys.

Little boys toys.
Just before we went through the Stop Lock we had a pump-out at Napton Narrowboats; now there's a cost that's increasing at a rate of knots. £20, but I didn't mind too much as the outlet was on the off side.
We're back on the Staffs and Worcs now on the visitor moorings. So we're pumped out, fully watered and dieseled up = a clear mind.

Lucy? Fed and watered, and she's still mythering.

Meow me, now!
We might have to give her a tin of "shut up" later if she keeps on.

A potted history on the Shropshire Union Canal.

This brings both my passions together, canals and aviation.

Last night we moored between Bridges 21 and 22. There is a WWll aerodrome nearby where 495 Fighter Training Group were based. On 4 July 1944, a P-47 Thunderbolt 41-6538 crashed. Luckily the pilot survived. There's more information here:-

Narrowboat Duke coming through.
The crash site is in the recess in the hedgerow, centre of the photo, Bridge 21 in the background.

Thursday, 19 May 2016

Market Drayton to somewhere in the sticks.

A very early start for us today, we had TQ moving just after 7am, we thought we might be the first, but there were a lot of boats that got away before us. Including a (an) hotel boat and a hire boat with at least four portly men aboard who had been drinking a lot the previous day, both heading in the same direction as us.

As we approached Tyrley Locks Lin said she would steer TQ, I would operate the locks. OK fair enough. Well, at the first lock there was trouble, we couldn't get TQ in, she was almost all the way in but it was the last five feet. "More power" I said, but to no avail, she wouldn't go in. "OK,  reverse back.... keep going.... back further.... OK, that'll do, now go forward.... more power.... keep going.... there you go, you're in". There was something under the water but we got over it.

Through the first lock, into the next, and oh no, the very strong by-wash pushed the bow to the left against the bank and the stern onto a hidden rock under the water. TQ was well and truly stuck; we tried everything to get us afloat, even letting more water through to fill the pound wouldn't do it because it was running out of the next by-wash.
Eventually we managed to get her free and I reversed back some way and took a fast run up to the lock entrance pointing the bow into the cross flow of the by-wash and putting on loads of opposite tiller right at the last second. TQ went into the lock like a rat up a drain pipe. How newbies manage with hire boats I don't know.

Tyrley Top Lock.
Woodseaves Cutting is next, this is so ethereal through here, nobody knows you're there. Heavily wooded and steep sided, only the sound of the birds and the burble of a diesel engine could be heard.

They have high bridges round yer
Tall ships?

They're having some work done.
There have been some improvements to the tow path through here, for most of the way they've done away with the mud and put in drainage and gravel.

This is the famous Bridge 39 in Grub Street Cutting
 Somewhere along Grub Street cutting we spotted an old Land Rover in the woods, ripe for restoration and a little further along a 1938 Daimler drophead. I bet Phil Glenister and Ant Anstead would love to have a go at restoring both of them.
Looking back.

We actually stopped for lunch just after Norbury Junction, it's not something we usually do, having lunch "on the fly" is our thing, but we thought as we started out early today we'd treat ourselves.
Hot dogs with mustard and a tin of San Miguel. Now there's a major danger of crashing for the rest of the afternoon, but no, we go up off our bums and carried on as we heard there is rain on the way.

Soon after we left, the rain started, slow at first and gradually became heavier so we looked for a place to moor. Our spot we bagged earlier in the week was occupied so we pressed on until we found the first length of respectable pilings. Most are plain concrete edges or what looks like railway line bolted to concrete slabs, neither of which are much use for mooring. At last we found some on the end of a cutting with a reasonably dry tow path and the hooks went in. Added bonus, reasonably good interwebby too.

Lucy had another belly full of chicken again:-

I tired, I sleep Zzzzzzzz!
Steady on Lucy, you nearly turned inside out.

Wednesday, 18 May 2016

Adderley to Market Drayton in the rain.

Just a short hop today, up through the five locks at Adderley and then through Betton Wood, still no Shrieking Spectre - disappointing. Now moored up in Market Drayton, so we took a stroll around the town. It's quite a nice town though it's a bit run down in places. Went into Wilko to get some hand cleaner and then into Asda for some groceries. Forgot to get eggs, oh well it can wait until tomorrow.

Market Drayton

We were moored very close to a main road bridge, the noise didn't bother us that much, it was the barking dog in someone's garden that inspired us to move further down the moorings to a quieter spot.

Now we've moved up away from the barking dog.
We had chicken for tea, and so did Lucy, she cleared the plate.

Is there any meow more?

Tuesday, 17 May 2016

Barbridge to Adderley Locks.

A lateish start to the day, we ate too much in the pub last night. We moved up to the junction to fill the tank with water and we had to queue. When it was our turn we discovered the same old same old, the water supply was as slow as it's always been.

Oh! No, where's the Jolly Tar?

I'm guessing it'll soon be a housing estate.

Entrance to the Llangollen Canal.

Approaching Stretton Aqueduct.

When we reached lock 13 at Audlem there was a chap sat on the balance beam reading a book. He helped lock us through and asked if he could help us going up the flight. I handed him a windlass and our conversation made the task go a lot quicker. The only hold-up, if you could call it that, was a hire boat which pulled out in front of us as we were approaching lock 11. They were newbies but they were learning fast. Of course we had to help them as well, otherwise they would have slowed us down. Our helper took us almost to the top and we insisted he left with a little something to slake his thirst when he got back. What a kind fellow, and a big thank you to you.