Outside Great Haywood

What a glorious day! I remember when we had another wonderful April a few years ago and we thought it augured well for a good summer. It turned out to be the best month of the year!

It was a somewhat late start this morning: blame it on watching Question Time last night and then listening to Late Junction on Radio Three. We took turns to walk and steer and once again the views were wonderful. Because we intended to stop for shopping in Rugeley we went straight through Armitage, past the huge Armitage Shanks factory. What a change to see warehouses and factories on the canal still being used for manufacturing! There were pallet loads of toilets and basin pedestals piled up outside and all was bustle and production. It’s a tricky stretch of canal to steer with many very narrow stretches especially through the former Armitage Tunnel. Twice Alan reversed back through bridges to let other boats through because there was more room to pass behind him than in front. I can imagine that it makes for some interesting manoeuvres in holiday time.

Rugeley Morrisons is very close to the canal so it was a short hop with the shopping trolley though it isn’t the best Morrisons we have been to. We cracked through the shopping list as quickly as possible and set off again towards Great Hayward. It’s a lovely stretch with the River Trent next to the towpath. I was taken by surprise by Colwich Lock because Mr Pearson likes to keep us boaters tested by occasionally reversing his maps so I was mentally approaching Haywood Junction by way of the Staffs & Worcs instead of the Trent & Mersey. I am sure there are (probably male) readers snorting at this but it’s easily done. Anyway we found a mooring with views over Shugborough. I am sure there are many people who would pay good money to stay in a place with such a wonderful vista! The joys of boating.

We walked into Great Haywood for our Friday evening tipple and weren’t much impressed. It’s a bit of a disappointment when you go through under the railway bridge: much better to stay on this side!

Today we did 10.23 Miles 1 Lock and 1 Tunnel

Our first Ducklings

Armitage Shanks Factory

Armitage Tunnel

Going through Rugeley

Statistics so far:-

2335.47 Miles, 1372 Locks, 128 Swing Bridges, 82 Lift Bridges, 40 Tunnels


2 Responses to Outside Great Haywood

  1. Carrie says:

    That’s a really pleasant canal part of the waterways, isn’t it, especially in fine weather. Did you stop at Wolsely bridge, a couple of miles outside Rugeley? I love it along there, with the big ash trees and nearby nature reserve and there’s a wonderful antique shop nearby where I guy carves wooden furniture from his own bit of woodland. Good curry place too next door, but I don’t suppose you were up for any more takeaways! Hope Alan is fully recovered now – food-poisening is really grotty. Go vegan my friends!!

  2. nblazydays says:

    Hi Carrie, Lovely to hear from you – hope all goes well. We didn’t stop at Wolseley Bridge: unfortunately we are travelling a little too fast at present. I did think hard about stopping there as we passed but there was a lot of road noise and I really fancied a mooring which we would have had to share with a man with a very unfriendly dog. We have had two nights in the stretch leading to Great Haywood with the beautiful view over the river meadows and on to Shugborough Hall. Such a lovely area and we would never have come here if not for the boat. And the sun has been shining! F x

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