Night at the Museum

night museumnight museum 3We spent last night and most of the day moored at the lower basin at Ellesmere Port. We really felt at home amongst all the boats there. It was like being at the heart and soul of the waterways.

This morning we took a look around the museum. It was fantastic looking at the historic working boats. The boatmans cabins were beautiful. It really is amazing to think that a whole family used to live in just that part of the boat. We have a boatmans cabin on Foxglove as most of you are probably aware but we also have the extra living space also. It really makes you appreciate how they used to live and work on their boats.

engine room

back cabin 2renovationsHorse





IMG_2208  IMG_2215  Skinner

Manchester SHip Canal  Lower Basin  Stables

Met a lovely family this afternoon just as we were about to leave Ellesmere Port. Elin and her Mum & Dad gave us hand through the locks. It was lovely to see the enthusiasm they had for the boat and how the locks worked.
Nice to meet you guys!!

Helping Hand  Helping Hand

It was a fabulous and interesting stay there. We wish we could have stayed longer.


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Museum Piece

trip boatI know they keep old artefacts in museums so I thought I would “take Roy” along To Ellesmere Port today. Arrived this afternoon and for the first time I had to double moor up, with perfection may I add.
They had a pirate theme going on today.



We have moored up in the basin for the night where there is a wedding celebration going on right opposite us. What a fab place to have a wedding.

museum  back cabin  ep1

Lots of photos were taken of Foxglove today on the way down here and we are still receiving lots of lovely comments from people. There are always 2 questions everyone asks

Q. Who built her?
A. Roger Fuller

Q. Who did the paint job?
A: Sally Tooze, Willow Boat Painting & Martyn King, Sign Writing.

Museummooringbig bollard




It is nice to be mooring in the heart of a boat museum tonight we feel like one of the attractions!







Lots of silly photos taken along the way today, I think people call them “selfies”. It is the only way we get to take photos of ourselves when travelling. The things we do to amuse ourselves on our travels.

It started to rain again this afternoon so Wish made a quick exit inside to keep dry. She sure has the best seat in the house.

We have reached the end of the Shropshire Union Canal today so we either have to turn around or go along the Manchester Ship Canal. Apparently there is a lot of paperwork involved to take the second route so unfortunately we are heading our way back. Oh my goodness……..that means the dreaded staircase locks again!! Joy!!

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chesterWe decided to stay put today and have a wander around Chester.Walked past the dreaded Northgate ‘Scarecase’ Locks. The water was still flowing over the gates in the middle lock as the water levels are still high. Not a boat in sight though. I would have liked to have seen a boat coming down the locks just to see their reaction. If it was anything like mine yesterday it would have been the look of terror!! lots of street performers and buskers around the city. Quite an entertaining walkabout.

sand street artstaircasestaircase

telfords warehouse 2thaiburger (2)

We stopped for a late lunch in Telford’s Warehouse where we had a good view of Foxglove. I had Chicken Thai Noodles, as I wanted to try something different (although I wish I hadn’t!!) and Roy had the hugest burger I have ever seen!! He looked very happy!

It’s been raining today but bring it on as I have now got myself some waterproof trousers. I will be ready for those staircase locks now. On to Ellesmere Port tomorrow. Looking forward to visiting the museum.



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Niagra Falls

I will get to the tile of the blog in a bit but I need to back track.

Tattenhall MarinaTattenhall MarinaWe spent yesterday at Tattenhall marina where we replenished our food cupboards, did lots of washing, drying, cleaning and the one thing Roy was desperate to do and that is to wash the boat off! How many hours do you think he spent doing this??  5 hours!!!

IMG_2058The reason for this is a great big ball of soot came out of the exhaust chimney to the heating supply and Roy tried to get it up and to cut a long story short it smeared all over the roof cause of the rain and marked all the roof. We have also moored near lots of trees during the past week and this had made a complete mess of the boat, bird poop, the lot!! With a nice slice of pizza inbetween the washing and endless drinks supplied, Roy did a fab job.


Northgate StaircaseNorthgate StaircaseSo that was yesterday and today has been relaxing, interesting and then scary!!! It was like going into the unknown when I entered the triple Northgate Staircase locks. The first part of the lock was fine, It was the second part, the middle of the staircase. The boat was near enough to the cill at the back and the spray coming from the lock gates was….well I guess you could say WET! Roy said I should put my hood on because I might be in for a soaking??? What did he mean? I thought he was kidding when he said it would come over the top of the lock gate … It was like Niagra Falls!!! It was fascinating and scary at the same time.

photo 1We moored up not long after the locks to receive a phone call from Wendy & Phil from NB Top Notch, who we have made friends with a few months ago and got on with so well. photo 3They were just about to have a drink in “Telfords Warehouse” when they saw us moor up so they came and said hello. They are a great couple and have a good sense of humour. They must have a good sense of humour because Wendy let me deface her Prada bag with one of my knitted roses!! Lovely to see you both  W & P. !! Already looking forward to next week.

Lots of photos from today………sit back and enjoy







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Friendly Fisherman

foxgloveToday has been fantastic. Even though I got soaking wet as the rain didn’t give up for most of the day, it has been fab!!

We had good banter with these fisherman today as we passed them.
Whiskey and sandwiches on the go, the fisherman that is, not us and they were all in good spirits!

fisherman1 fisherman2fisherman3
fisherman4 fisherman5 fisherman6




The Bunbury staircase locks were the highlight of the day. I shared the lock with Tony from NB No Brass. Both of us were going down the first lock and 1 boat was coming up…it was like one of those games where you slide the pieces from side to side, forwards etc. to fit everything into place.Lots of spectators watching and helping out. Great fun!

barbridgebunbury staircaseThe canal was so busy today up to the point where we passed the junction at Barbridge So much to look at today the camera was never put down.

Arrived at Tattenhall late afternoon. Good memories today looking back at the photos.

bunbury sucsylvanian NBllangollenbarbridge congestion



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It had to happen!

Well one day it did definitely have to happen… and today was that day…we got rained on!From the moment we moored up yesterday I don’t think it stopped raining most of the night.

chris and antoncrochetHad a lovely surprise last night as we had visitors who are moored at Overwater Marina whom we met last year when Foxglove was being painted. We have kept in touch via the blog, emails and texts for the whole year and finally we got to meet one another last night. Christine is absolutely fabulous at crochet. Just look at this she did in only 5 minutes. I on the other hand got a bit confused trying to crochet. I will get it though. I never give up. It was lovely to meet them both as they have been on their boat now for 10 years! Wow. That will be us one day as I can never imagine going back to live in a house now.

Late start to the morning today and guess what……..Roy blew a fuse!!! Ha ha ha! It wasn’t me this time although apparently it was still my fault cause I had the dishwasher on (which had already been on for 20 minutes) and Roy had been given his daily orders (I aren’t joking) which included hoovering. The inverter has never done this on us before whilst we have been out travelling and the only thing we can think it must be is because we are now using the freezer. So there are a whole lot of electrical things going on.

Nantwichwooden horseLuckily Overwater marina had 2 fuses for us so Roy had a quick walk over whilst I baked some teacakes. I had to make these by hand though and not with my mixer as we had no electric. My goodness it was hard work but I have to admit they have still turned out well if not slightly better than usual.

2 locks today done and then we carried on into new territory. We have never been this far before on the boat.

We even saw the old working boat Foxglove, unfortunately because it was raining we didn’t manage to capture a photo of it which was rather disappointing.


Well the sun finally made an appearance this evening and it is gorgeous looking out through the hatches at the moment at 9pm with the sun going down. It is one of those magical moments where you feel really blessed.

We should hopefully make it to Chester tomorrow if we stay on the right canal. If we take a left turn at Hurleston Junction we could head onto the Llangollen canal. I would love to do that but I think we are going to do that later on in the year…..or perhaps if I am at the tiller I might just accidentally (on purpose) head that way. Lets see what happens tomorrow.

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Did We Get a Soaking?

Audlem Well it rained and rained and rained last night. Heard there was flooding back in Stoke. Due to the severe weather we couldn’t get any signal last night for phones or internet so yesterday’s blog wasn’t published till this morning … where the sun was out again!!

So the answer to the title of tonight’s blog is no. We managed to miss the rain yet again. Moored up just past OverWater Marina at Audlem where we have done all 15 locks today and then guess what… it started to rain. Perfect timing again. We honestly cannot believe our luck.

Mika & Sasha racing boats PEARL

Called in at Audlem Mill whilst filling up with water. I bought wool and Roy bought a book. I am knitting some more roses. The boat will soon look like a knitted garden centre!

Wish got the remains of a rose that went wrong because I knitted it on too bigger needles. Don’t think Wish was at all impressed. Funny though!

Wish got the remains of a rose that went wrong because I knitted it on too bigger needles. Don’t think Wish was at all impressed. Funny though!

Made my best friends Janet & Angus a tiller Tassel.

Made my best friends Janet & Angus a tiller Tassel.

All in all another great day. I can’t believe it has been one week since we left the marina. It has gone far too quick. Tomorrow is going to be quite exciting because after the next 2 locks we will be on new waters. Really looking forward to all the new sights and photo opportunities over the next few days.

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This Little Piggy Went to Market.

Yes, that is me, the little piggy. Off I went with the other piggy (Roy) into Market Drayton, whilst the other little piggy (Wish) stayed at home (the boat).

market draytonIt was good to get off the boat because I absolutely blew a fuse this morning!!! Before you all get excited wondering what on earth happened….I literally blew a fuse, an electrical fuse. Roy said I might want to mention that the fridge and freezer is 240 volt which were on and that I had the washing machine on also, not normally a problem, phones charging and TV on and all that……all I did was try to dry my hair???? What was wrong with that??? Unfortunately the fuse it blew was that on the inverter. We had a little bit of a panic on and a mention of £5,000.00 to replace it was discussed amongst a few swear words but in the end Roy fixed it. The boat was turned upside down in the process as it is under the bed. Worth the process though as Roy found his slippers!!

We had an enjoyable lunch in a little coffee shop called “Jones Coffee House”. Quaint little shop full of character. They had all homemade chutneys, jams and drinks for sale.
We had an enjoyable lunch in a little coffee shop called “Jones Coffee House”. Quaint little shop full of character. They had all homemade chutneys, jams and drinks for sale.

Quiet little town, Market Drayton, apparently it is half day closing on a Thursday. I didn’t know that still happened in this day and age. It was extremely quiet.





Another fascinating place was Valentines.

Another fascinating place was Valentines.

Roy wanted this bat that was in a coffin. I don’t think so!! Luckily it was going into an auction so we couldn’t buy it there and then, otherwise I think he might have considered it.

Roy wanted this bat that was in a coffin. I don’t think so!! Luckily it was going into an auction so we couldn’t buy it there and then, otherwise I think he might have considered it.



Visited an Antique shop called “Number 10” where I bought myself yet another heart for the boat. Fascinating items for sale.

Visited an Antique shop called “Number 10” where I bought myself yet another heart for the boat. Fascinating items for sale.

Loved this little chap but he wouldn’t fit on the boat.

Loved this little chap but he wouldn’t fit on the boat.

Enjoyed the walk into town and back and as the weather was still dry we decided to make our way a bit further through to Adderley Locks.

I climbed up and down my first ladder today to open the lock gates whilst Roy went and set the next one. We went through all 5 locks in no time.

Another boat was coming into the last lock just as we were leaving and she asked if she thought we would miss the rain. My reply was….”It always rains after we have moored and we are just about to moor up!! So I think we will be ok and you won’t!” I laughed but I don’t think the lady thought it was that funny. Ooops!!That is exactly what happened.

adderley locks All moored up, made a cup of tea and the heavens have now opened.
We have escaped the rain again!  Audlem, 15 locks tomorrow. Let’s hope the weather remains on our side. We think we are pushing our luck a bit.

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Ups & Downs

Every bridge we went under we were guaranteed another boat coming in the opposite direction. A few 'WAH WAH’s' on the claxon were needed'

Every bridge we went under we were guaranteed another boat coming in the opposite direction. A few ‘WAH WAH’s’ on the claxon were needed’

There were lots of embankments and cuttings today. There was luscious green foliage everywhere you looked and very muddy towpaths also which one brave dog owner decided to walk through. Sunny hats were required but also wellies for any towpath walker.

Looks like someone else has been busy knitting with colourful looking mushrooms on their boat, made to actually look like toadstools/mushrooms.

Looks like someone else has been busy knitting with colourful looking mushrooms on their boat, made to actually look like toadstools/mushrooms.

The canals are getting busy again. Lots of hire boaters about, everyone in such a calm and peaceful mood as the weather was glorious.

These guys definitely got their catch of the day.

These guys definitely got their catch of the day.

fishingWe had lunch on the roof again whilst we were travelling which we love when it is glorious weather like this. Later on I sat on the top of the roof, knitting away with the radio on. We even had a sing song to some good songs on the radio and Roy even started dancing!! That was soooo embarrassing! Days of stressful living seem a thing of the past.

tyrley locknorbury







Woodseaves Cutting  clare

We are so enjoying this trip, travelling as much or as little as we want to. No schedule to keep to, it is very relaxing.

It has been a very enjoyable day. I even said to Roy “isn’t it nice just enjoying each other’s company without chatting away”……..His reply was, “ Yes, I prefer it that way!!”

Wish - Keeping A Lookout

Wish – Keeping A Lookout

We saw our first boat moored at Gnosall.
We saw our first boat moored at Gnosall.
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The Calm After The Storm

bridgeWell we were very lucky yesterday because not long after we moored up we had thunderstorms and lightning. It cooled everywhere down which was good. It said on the weather forecast that it was going to rain again today… not a chance. Lovely day again and it was a bit cooler so it was definitely perfect cruising weather. We are always so lucky when we go off cruising as we always seem to get good weather… I hope I have not jinxed us now by saying that!!!

We didn’t set off until after midday today…, not because I was a lazy sod and stayed in bed but because I was knitting. I have absolutely loved knitting this blanket that I started Sunday night and just couldn’t put it down. I was knitting until late last night and straight after breakfast today…  I was on a mission…Mission completed just turned midday today:


blanketI am so pleased with it, especially because it isn’t even 2 weeks since Heather showed me how to knit.

It is the first pattern I have followed as it has a border all the way around. There is a bit of wool left so I am going to make some kind of decoration on it, not sure yet whether to put tassels on it or to make some flowers. That is the fun part; it can be whatever I want it to be.

I think I might make another throw, this time for the bedroom. I must try taking my time with the next one. Perhaps I could start a business from the boat, knitted bags, throws, blankets…………..oh and I mustn’t forget “Willy Warmers!!”. Already had a request for one of these from one of my friends……….Yes you know who you are 😉 I need to find elasticated wool though!! Perhaps even bigger knitting needles???!!

Phoebeaqueductphyllis may


Well the one thing that was very memorable today was that the dog did a runner!!! Unbelievable!!  I moored up at Wheaton Aston and waited whilst another boat went down the lock, Roy stood waiting at the lock with the dog (Wish) and when the boat left the lock I just think Wish thought it was me leaving the lock and off she went running along the canal. Who said collies are intelligent??  Me being the “lady” that I am stuck 2 fingers in my mouth and whistled so loud at least 10 times … luckily she heard eventually, after I set every dog off along the canal barking because of my whistling. She came running back to me with her ears down with a panic look on her face. She has not left my side since. She gave me a scare and herself as well when she couldn’t find us.

dirty bikeLots of greenery everywhere today, it is like an enchanted forest as we have come through Brewood and Gnosall.
It was very muddy along the way. I was surprised to see a man riding his bike through the thick mud … it got so bad though he got off his bike and gave the wheels a dunk in the canal.


Mooring at GnosallMoored up at 5.30 today. It has been a very peaceful day. Moored up beneath the trees and listening to the birds tweeting……….oh and one annoying pigeon!

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