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  1. noddyboater

    Mooring halfway between York & Bristol

    Security has actually improved dramatically recently. The main electric gates are in working condition again and the small gate near the pub is being kept locked. With lots of old working boats to look at and beer at the bar what’s not to like?
  2. noddyboater

    Dredging the Chesterfield?

    I wouldn’t class the Gate Inn bend as a gentle curve! It’s quite entertaining to sit with a pint and watch people make a hash of it but it really is too shallow to navigate easily. If we’re talking scours rather than silt I’d suggest below the first lock at Misterton. A bit of spot dredging here would help some visitors to enter the first lock on the canal without getting stuck in the middle. Thanks for your comments about our quirky cottage, nobody seems to be sure of it’s history but we’re still digging. The gap between our neighbours is very odd, could have been a boundary issue. As you probably know the pub car park was once a wharf and our house was most likely part of that. The gothic windows face the canal and wharf, the back got normal horizontal sashes. Hard to see from the towpath, it also has curved bullnose bricks on all the corners wharf side, adding to the theory it had a lot of activity where the car park is now. It’s a shame that a canalside cottage nearby has recently received its death certificate on the grounds of it having “no historical interest”, mainly because some poor sod stone clad it and put alloy windows in. Let’s not forget the asbestos was on the land when Billy Bulldozer inherited it, it was always going to be his responsibility to remove it. I’m afraid I won’t be sharing your enthusiasm for his plans as the first thing he did was to drain and destroy the old pond that’s been there for over 100 years. Full of wildlife of course and this is next to a SSSI. His ideas for the site change with the wind, industrial units rejected we’re back to a cosy crafty god knows what. The only thing that is consistent is his dumping and burning of industrial waste for which planning was rejected. I feel privileged that I was lucky to spend many hours exploring the site before it changed hands, it was a glimpse into the past which is now lost and unfortunately unrecorded.
  3. noddyboater

    Dredging the Chesterfield?

    It was definitely built deeper than that. Old photos of loaded cuckoo boats show that there was once some depth to it. They did have to use long planks to reach the bank when unloading though!
  4. noddyboater

    Dredging the Chesterfield?

    Yes, although never used by working boats with engines it once had a useable depth, at least in the centre. Sections that have been dredged are remarkably easy to travel along, almost like a “normal” canal. Somewhere I have a photo of a loaded narrowboat near Drakeholes, I think it was taken in the eighties. You wouldn’t have a hope of that now.
  5. noddyboater

    Dredging the Chesterfield?

    I wish it was as deep as your picture! Allowing for refraction, reflection and anything else it really is that shallow (read my first post). It’s not hard stuff like on the Llangollen, just years of rotting vegetation and general shite. One brave boater who attended the historic gathering in Retford commented that you can be miles from anywhere on the Chesterfield but still be churning up crisp packets from the 1970’s. Handy sometimes though, we recently found this Victorian ink bottle where Python had disturbed the mud while clearing vegetation. Cheers Cheshire Rose.
  6. noddyboater

    Dredging the Chesterfield?

    To illustrate my point. This apparently doesn’t need dredging according to some.. That really is the bottom in the foreground, about a foot deep. This extends until you hit the “channel”, which is around half the width of a narrowboat. This was actually very near a bridge hole, that’s why the channel is off centre. There’s visitor moorings with piled banks and bollards on here, but it’s still the same depth!
  7. noddyboater

    Dredging the Chesterfield?

    The length between the Gate Inn winding hole and Bonemill Bridge has been one of the worst for years. A walk along it on a day without any boat movements ( not difficult) when the water is gin clear confirms it without needing a depth survey. Yes, like much of the canal you can skim along nicely in a springer or shallow draughted boat, but try it with something a bit more substantial and it becomes a bit tedious. As mentioned earlier, Python may have a 3’ draught but it’s only at its arse end, she’s also quite short. A long, deep boat doesn’t follow the channel on the Chessy, it ploughs a new one. Talk to people who visit with such boats and it really does put them off returning, and then they tell their friends.. which as we know is a shame. Good luck engaging the heavy handed business man at Walkeringham brick yard with your plans. Unless it will help his previously failed planning applications I fear his interest in the canal will be very short lived. On a lighter note, with all the talk of the view from my bedroom window here it is.
  8. noddyboater

    Dredging the Chesterfield?

    My boat draws a mere 2’6” (that’s FEET AND INCHES), but as it’s ballasted level that’s along it’s full length- 60’. Unless you’ve suddenly started loading your boats I’d guess that the static draught of 3’ is to around your engine hole. Much better for skimming along the muddy bottom than a deep draughted modern boat.
  9. noddyboater

    Dredging the Chesterfield?

    Yes, I had the pleasure of cruising that length last October. They seem to have forgotten to dredge the bridge holes. Forgive me. It was of course a couple of good fellows in otter skin britches, knee deep in the mire. They were scribing with quills and ink onto parchment the quoted measurements in yards, feet and inches.
  10. noddyboater

    Dredging the Chesterfield?

    For anyone who knows the canal this is shocking news.. As I write this 2 chaps are surveying what’s possibly the worst stretch with hopefully a real prospect of it being dredged! Amazing isn’t it. Some depth readings just taken- 0.6, 0.5, 0.6, 0.8, and this was from the centre of the canal in a winding hole! This hole was actually spot dredged about 10 yrs ago. The mud pans were filled to their gunnels then half emptied again as they couldn’t get up the canal to be unloaded.
  11. noddyboater

    J2 how much crankshaft float?

    I picked up a couple of new “very old stock” K heads, and a water cooled 2cyl exhaust manifold last year from a retired marine engineer on the south coast. All he wanted was a donation to the RNLI, I made a big one. Unfortunately though he didn’t have a barrel, I really need a decent barrel.. If someone has one going spare please let me know!
  12. I recently stumbled on this old building between the canal towpath and river Trent, It’s below Wolseley Bridge and opposite Bishton Hall. It’s quite hard to spot from the towpath as the roof of the building is at canal level, with the arched entrance down the bank facing the river. If it went back any further it would almost undermine the towpath. Googling “Bishton Hall old boathouse” shows an image of a once very grand building, the arch and curving side entrance are now all that remains. Which came first though, the boathouse or canal?
  13. noddyboater

    Boat scam

    I must admit I’ve bought cars with no logbook that were too “cheap” not to, and a narrowboat from a very strange couple on the towpath in Hyde one evening. They did unearth some relevant paperwork eventually but as it was for sale for half what the engine was worth I’d have bought it anyway. It’s easy to get caught out though. I remember a tale from someone who dealt in vintage engines meeting a bloke in the middle of nowhere and giving him a hefty deposit for the lovely shiny engine in his boat..
  14. noddyboater

    Comments on boat for sale

    Just the Calder & Hebble I think..
  15. noddyboater

    Dog pooh bags

    Me too. As long as I can post it through the owners letterbox once identified.

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