Yesterday we departed Acton Trussell. This was nice spot and whilst here we met the crew of Barolo No. 3 as they passed. We had not seen them since the Hudson open weekend last year. It is great having a catch up and you never know who is going to be round the next corner. Our first stop was by Park Gate Lock, where Midland Chandlers have a shop. We had walked here the previous day purchasing a pair of outdoor folding chairs, due to the fact they were offering a discount whilst the Crick Show was on. Not wanting to carry the chairs 2 1/2 miles back to the boat, they agreed to put them aside ready for collection. We also wanted a pump out at the boatyard just beyond the lock. We won’t be using them again, they charge double if you want the tank rinsed which is normally included in the price. It was then on to the village of Penkridge. Both of us needed haircuts and this village has six hairdressing establishments. Unfortunately for the crew all the lady hairdressers required a booking whereas I just sat and waited my turn. The village also boasts an excellent bakery, and a very tempting old fashioned sweet shop. Thank god we don’t live in Penkridge. Back at the boat we refilled the water tank and had lunch, then we were off again, aiming for somewhere south of Gailey.
Our daily walk took us into the village of Acton Trussell. It is a very pleasant village, with a mix of older original houses and cottages that have been added to over the years. What is nice is that most of the new additions have been built in a similar style to the original buildings. As we walked through the village we spotted a gentleman in his front garden going about his business. You can tell it is an upmarket village as he is reading the Telegraph and not some red top newspaper.
Yesterday the crew returned from their weekend jaunt, so this morning we were up bright and breezy ready to move off. First we settled our bill with the Stafford Boat Club and I am sure we will visit them again on our travels. The crew went top up shopping to a large co-op store in Wildwood, whilst I filled the water tank and prepared the boat. The forecast today was for heavy showers and occasional sunny spells. We set off with a potential mooring spot 200 yards ahead through the bridge. This was only going to be used if the weather was really foul, it was not. We continued on to the lock about half a mile away and were fortunate that a boat had set it for us. Through the lock for a further half a mile and we reached our intended mooring spot. Just as we were tying up the heavens opened with a mix of rain and hail. Five minutes later, just as we finished the sun came out. We have enough supplies to last at least a week, so we will probably stay here till after the bank holiday weekend as it may get busy.
Today we finally left Tixall Wide to continue our journey. We only had three miles and one lock to navigate today. Our destination was Stafford Boat Club on the outskirts of Stafford. We need to be close to the trains this weekend, so the crew can go to another birthday celebration. We arrived at 11 am and had a short wait before we could access the services pontoon. We then nipped across the entrance of the marina and moored on the linear moorings. Here we could also plug into the national grid, and we have water on tap. No need for conservation for the next week. The boat club is very small and run entirely by volunteers. It has all services and a club house, renowned for the low cost of its ale. The people here are very friendly which explains why there is a long waiting list for potential moorers. By the time we had tied up the sun was out and the day ended up being very warm. We took the rest of the day easy, and will explore our surroundings over the next few days.