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Derek Porteous

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  1. You certainly can. From memory there is a winding hole canal side of lock, but maximum 50ft. By that, I mean you can lock down and turn. If you go all the way to the canal head you will have to reverse back.
  2. Well Preston Brook Tunnel was eventful as well. There were four boats going through north. The lead boat (Canaltime) went so slowly that chaos ensued behind with everyone loosing steerage. Stop and start all the way through. Total passage time was 35 minutes, 5 minutes into the 10 minute slot for the south bound boat. We were third boat. The second boat (small hire boat), had steam coming everywhere with an overcooked engine. Just waiting with them for the engine to cool down and, if necessary, offer a tow. Tunnels!
  3. We were held up last year at the Barnton Tunnel last year when two boats going in the opposite direction got stuck in the tunnel. As a result we are ultra cautious and now hover at the entrance whilst someone goes to the bow to check there is no head light or engine noise (although there is a kink in the tunnel, you can see the outline of the opposite entrance). All clear, so off we went. About a third of the way through, a tunnel light appeared at the entrance. We gave a long blast of horn and got two short blasts in return ( not sure what that means). On we went at a reduced speed whilst the other tunnel light remained firmly in the entrance portal. We were not sure whether the other boat was hovering, coming forward slowly or reversing. A few minutes later the other boat sounded its horn twice again. We replied with a single long blast. It eventually became clear that the other boat had entered the tunnel and was slowly reversing back out again. No big deal and no harm done, although the helmsman did seem a bit grumpy as we passed. Next up was the Saltersford Tunnel which is on a timed basis. With the shenanigans at Barton Tunnel we just missed our slot by two minutes, so moored up to await the top of the hour, 38 minutes later. No issues here. Straight through in less than ten minutes. However as we exited the northern portal, a boat heading south arrived and when straight into the tunnel, admittedly with two short blasts of the horn, some 20 minutes before the allotted time of half past the hour. No idea if this caused a problem or not. We just drifted north thinking upon what might occur at the Preston Brook Tunnel.
  4. No sign of CRT to remove the fallen tree, but boats are beginning to move. The first boat (non-shiny) smashed its way through the tree creating a narrow channel.
  5. Tree down blocking canal this afternoon. Awaiting CRT (or their contractors) to attend.
  6. When I used the online booking system it wouldn’t let you book on the day. You had to book at least one day in advance. Also it used to ask for the exit date as well, but I see this has now been dropped.
  7. When I booked a passage last week, the CRT booking system wouldn’t let me book on the day of entry, it had to be at least the day before. The other point is the booking system wants an exit date (presumably to start a new 28 day clock running). This means planning and sticking to that plan, never mind the weather. You could, of course, just book 7 days even if you plan to do it in 2 or 3 days.
  8. I thought that was a good response. Measured, informative and with proposed time scales.
  9. Just an update. The fuel boat refuelled me in my absence. I am told by a nearby moorer that after a couple of days the central heating started working again on its own. So all good now.
  10. This an update issued by CRT today. I wonder whether any locals have more of an insight on when passage may be possible. 06/04/2021 16:29 Starting tomorrow, our contractors will be onsite between Bridge 200, Soot Hill and Bridge 201 on the Trent & Mersey Canal to undertake works that will help us to explore ways in which we can safely allow boat movement through the affected area without destabilising the embankment, slipped material within the canal or the above gas main. A further update will be provided by Tuesday 20 April.
  11. OK. That is useful. I will disconnect the power, make sure fuel is reaching the pump, and then try to fire it up. No idea when that will be. Best guess is the end of March before we are given the green light to travel. Cheers
  12. Many thanks for that, Andy. I still am not allowed to travel to/visit our boat but suspect in the meantime the heating system will have tried to start up several times as overnight temperatures have dipped below freezing. Pretty sure from neighbouring boat reports that the heater has not kicked in. I will certainly try to prime the pump when we are allowed to visit. Thanks again.
  13. Due to Coronavirus restrictions I have been unable to visit my boat since Autumn, and it looks like it will be some time before the travel restrictions are eased. I have an Eberspacher Hydronic heater (about a year old). It is on a frost control setting and has been running over winter. I am told that it has now run out of fuel. Are there any set procedures to start it up again? The previous model would lock out after a number of attempts to start up and had to be reset by a dealer. Don’t know about more recent models. Thanks.
  14. I believe the incident occurred about 3pm. It was reported immediately to CRT (presumably by a third boat attempting to enter the tunnel). CRT attended (not sure when they arrived) and communicated with the two jammed boats by shouting down the tunnel entrance. Just before 6pm, CRT called the fire bridges. They arrived very promptly and evacuated the two gentlemen and dog around 6.30pn.
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