Thursday, 26 July 2012

Cotswold Canals Trust.

IMG_1518 CCT Heritage Centre

The Cotswold Canal Trust Heritage Centre near Saul Junction is usually buzzing with people at the weekends seeking updates on the restoration progress along the canal, and refreshments. The shop is well stocked with books and souvenirs and sells the delicious Winstone's Ice-cream too. One corner is dedicated to education, where children can learn about the canal through brass rubbing and drawing etc. However it was open on Monday when we stopped for water, so I popped in for two mugs of drinks to while away the time until our tank had filled up.

IMG_1525Customers were arriving ready to board the CCT trip boat ‘Perseverance’ which passed us as we were on the diesel wharf filling up. This busy little boat depends on many volunteer crew members who run 30 minute trips at weekends. Although this party had hired it privately to cruise down to the Tudor Arms at Shepherds Patch for a leisurely lunch. The menu is perused, then their orders are taken before they set off aboard the boat and lunch is all ready on their arrival. What a brilliant idea for a day out with friends and family, or for a special occasion! This little boat, more than earns it’s keep, by bringing in much needed funding towards the restoration works. As do all the volunteer workers and the c 6.500 CCT members.


This is the old Stables Bar, so named because of the canal horses that used it in the past. We popped in here for a mid-day snack on Sunday when Steve came to visit us.

I don’t believe it!

IMG_1534 Western LadyI went over to the laundry on the Tudor Caravan site where, for £3, I washed my duvet in one of their industrial washers which takes 37 minutes precisely! As it was warming up to be another glorious day and the mooring at Patch Bridge is very wide, I spread the duvet across the back of two chairs near our boat to dry.

Things were going well and we were chatting to our neighbours, we were enjoying the afternoon sitting out on the grass.

Then this big plastic boat came and moored up and along comes a ‘lady’ from it with her chocolate Labrador on a lead. She walks it over by my duvet and lets her dog lift his leg and pee on it. After mumbling sorry see my husband about it she carried on walking the dog. We just could not believe it and while she was gone I became quite unhappy about the situation and decided to tackle her about it when they came back. Meanwhile Bottle went to see her husband aboard their boat, explained what had happened and asked for the £3 to go and re-wash the duvet. Anyway it appears that it was our fault for drying the washing on the  grassy area and he wasn’t going to apologise or pay the £3 either. So, when she returned I asked her why she let her dog pee on my washing and it would cost me £3 to re-wash it and she ignored me! At this point I became rather overheated and used some words that I don’t usually use! I still didn’t feel much better as I trudged all the way round in the heat of the afternoon to the laundry again either.

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We further annoyed him by photographing his ‘fantastic plastic vision in white’ and told him it would be going on our blog. Bottle told him that he now had confirmed the low opinion, held by many, of those who own these large gin palaces and by his belligerent attitude. So if you encounter ‘WESTERN LADY’ travelling north on the G+S give him them a wide berth.

They don’t seem to have a number on their boat, or indeed be displaying a license either!

Stop press: The bridge keeper has just checked the boats moored here and Western Lady is not displaying a licence, he is investigating.

Wednesday, 25 July 2012

Nice Bikes and Cars.

IMG_1488 Harley D IMG_1489 Triumph

Harley Davidson.                             Triumph.

IMG_1491 HD 110 IMG_1493

The all singing, all dancing Harley Davidson with all the ‘gubbins’.

IMG_1502 RR IMG_1503 RR

Immaculate Rolls Royce.

IMG_1524 IMG_1522

This one is in a sorry state.IMG_1523

The ‘Bees Knees’.

Tuesday, 24 July 2012

Cricket on Frampton Green.

IMG_1499 Cricket

On Saturday afternoon their was a leisurely Cricket match in progress there.

IMG_1497 Frampton on Severn CCWe were imagining the Strawberry Cream Teas that maybe awaiting them in the Club House, hmmm!  

IMG_1494 VauxhallThis lovely old Vauxhall car was left posing outside the Bell Inn. There was absolutely no room at the Inn as it was jam packed with spectators lunching and drinking while they watched the Cricket.

IMG_1471 The Orangery The ornate Orangery by Frampton Green.

IMG_1500 Fretherne Bridgehouse

Fretherne Bridge House, which is for sale

(offers in excess of £300,000).

Monday, 23 July 2012

Making Hay while the Sun shines.


While the farmers are all hard at work, we are lazing around enjoying the sunshine, between chores of course, Luvly Jubbly innit!

IMG_1510In fact it is a bit too hot to be moving around much really, as you can see in this picture.

IMG_1507 GeeseEven the Geese were sensible enough to find a shady spot for lunch. Hoards of people came to picnic, boat watch, eat ice-cream and splosh about in canoes, sail their model boats and generally amble about.

IMG_1509Plastic boats zoom by while their owners sip drinks on the fly-bridge and gaze down on you, they know their place! Funny how most of them seem to have tenders behinds though! You always know when one has passed your boat. First you hear their deep loud gurgling engine, followed by a huge wave which sets your boat bobbing about on it’s mooring ropes like a cork!

IMG_1513 TessieThis BIG barge called ‘Tessie’ has to take the prize for being the loudest one so far. It  seems to have some sort of air cooled engine which got even noisier as it accelerated.


It went passed several times draped in bunting and at least thirty people sitting all over it. We could only think that some new owners were showing it off to their friends and family.

Friday, 20 July 2012

Cadbury’s Chocolate.

IMG_1451 Old Cadbury FactoryIn the background you can see the warehouses on Sandfield Wharf that were originally built for storage in WW2.

IMG_1464 Old Cadbury Factory Fretherne Wharf This is the old Cadbury’s Factory at Frampton Wharf. Local Milk, ground Cocoa Beans and Sugar were mixed together and baked here. The resulting Chocolate Crumb was then transported on the canal for final processing in their factory at Bourneville. The fleet of boats used for this were the Severn & Canal Carrying Company. Local milk was collected in churns by lorries, although Cadbury’s had their own boat which collected some churns which were left beside the canal by the farmers. Cadbury’s arranged for extra dredging of the canal alongside the wharf to accommodate the large coal barges that brought coal over from South Wales. The last cargo of crumb left here in c1961. The site is now used by several small industries. The main one being ‘Shipton Mill’ where their corn is ground into flour and packaged.

Thursday, 19 July 2012

Fair-weather photos.

IMG_1440 Cotton Wool Tufted Duck

I spotted the Cotton-wool Tufted Duck when loitering about in one of the rare sunny intervals that we are encountering in July!

IMG_1442 me one of my wives     IMG_1441 the bully

Another attraction for visitors seems to be the menagerie of feathered creatures that occupy the back garden of Saul Junction House. Each Cockerel has several ‘wives’ and there are also Ducks, Guinea Fowl and Geese wandering around.

IMG_1444 Jnct Geese     IMG_1463 Teasel

These two seem to guard the footbridge and only let the friendly people pass over it.

IMG_1466 ButterflyWith great patience I did eventually manage to catch one of these small brown butterflies, after following it flittering about endlessly trying to avoid my lens.

IMG_1457 Stormy SkyThen the grey skies returned and it was time to scuttle back for an afternoon cup of tea onboard with the ‘cabin-boy’! 

Wednesday, 18 July 2012

Up the Junction.

IMG_1448 Saul JnctThere is always plenty of activity for gongoozlers to ogle around the junction. This barge has been into Saul Marina and is emerging from the Stroud Water Canal (now part of the Cotswold Canals) onto the Gloucester and Sharpness Canal heading South.

IMG_1446Boats being manoeuvred in and out of RW Davis Boatyard for repairs and bottom blacking.

IMG_1454 JosephThis old boat called ‘Joseph’ of Bristol is having some of it’s wooden planking renewed.  Just to the left of my picture you can see the steamer in action. There is a firebox at one end providing steam up through the box to soften the oak planks inside it. This makes them pliable enough to be bent around the shape of the boat and bolted into place.


IMG_1462 C RT CraneThis enormous Canal and River Trust Crane has been moored near the Stables Bar providing much interest and many questions from the children.

IMG_1443We can just see the junction from our mooring position and there are quite a few boats here with us at the moment. I think that perhaps the canals and riversides have become more popular with day-trippers than the sea-sides now. Perhaps this is because the canals and rivers are within easy reach of many  people. Lets face it many new canal-side properties have been built recently, even along the ones that are not yet navigable! 

Monday, 16 July 2012

Here and there.



I like the illuminated advert on the old Moorland’s Matches factory, which is now a Furniture Warehouse. You may remember us posting this old wooden boat in a previous blog and calling it ‘Brixham’. Well, it is in fact called ‘Spartacus’ and was built in 1946 as Ex. Bm. 145 a fishing boat and later fitted with masts converting it into a sailing ship. It seems to have new owners now who are preparing to renovate it themselves.

We spent a wonderful day out with family visiting our friends in Bristol and were kept pretty busy entertaining two certain little boys. It was nice to have a long catch-up chat over an al-fresco lunch followed by strawberry's and cream.     IMG_1416 BargeMoving on down we saw this lovely big barge cruising sedately through the swing bridge at Saul Junction. 

IMG_1417 IMG_1418    

It is quite a walk from our mooring spot to the nearest shop for supplies. Along the way we admired some of the nice garden flowers.

IMG_1421 Orchid     IMG_1419 Frampton P.O Stores

There was a beautiful wild Orchid hiding in the long grass beside the towpath. Frampton Post Office Stores occupies a Georgian building overlooking the long  village green. Here we bought some milk fresh from the local Hardwicke Farm, pasteurised, but not homogenised. I think that we should all try to support our dairy farmers by buying local milk instead of supermarket milk whenever we can.

IMG_1420 Frampton GreenAs it was a fairly warm sunny day The Bell Inn was surrounded by thirsty customers enjoying a brief sunny spell!

IMG_1171     IMG_1424  feeding Geese

Our busy little Grandson came to see us and we all went along to be treated to a snack at the Stables Bar. En route we fed the Swans and the hungry Geese didn’t want to be left out and came  waddling over to us across the  bridge.