The top lock cafe was already buzzing with people having fried breakfasts when we strolled down for our coffee. In the adjoining picnic area an old BW pilling boat has been installed for children to play in, what a good idea. We passed through Shrewley Tunnel which was running with water in places, creating flowstone over the brick lining. We now know why boaters were putting their umbrellas up! There is a separate tunnel taking the towpath over the top to the other side. We arrived at Kingswood Junction in time for lunch aboard, then wandered around the tangle of interesting paths surrounding the area. A steam train passed over the railway bridge above the boat, but I didn’t catch it on camera I’m sorry to say. According to Google it was the Stratford to Birmingham, Shakespeare Express.
This quaint barrel roofed lock-keepers cottage overlooks the basin. Many of the accommodation bridges here are the twin cantilever type made of cast iron with a central slot through which the tow rope of the horse drawn boats would pass. There is an interesting cluster of BW stables and little workshops here and the following picture shows the rear of Canal Cottage which has a beautiful flower garden and a neat vegetable plot.
This afternoon we had some visitors that we hadn’t seen for some twenty years! Mary and Mac came with their two little dogs Poppy and Charlie. We helped them aboard and then over a glass of wine we had a good long chat, including our family history.
It was lovely to see you both and we hope to see you again when we are passing through next time.