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Tam & Di

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Tam & Di last won the day on April 6 2019

Tam & Di had the most liked content!

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  • Gender
    Not Telling
  • Location
    France or Twickenham
  • Interests
    The skills of boating, good food and wine. Boring people stupid talking about any of these.

Previous Fields

  • Occupation
    examiner French & UK steerer's qualifications
  • Boat Location
    predominantly France

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  1. Although continental canals will probably reopen to pleasure traffic in the coming weeks the reality is that boating holidays there this year are going to be unlikely. However all is not lost for those who enjoy reading about it. Di’s book “A Foodie Afloat” about our life barging around in north and central France is now available - places we’ve been, people we’ve met, and a few recipes thrown in. The official publication has been postponed so it is not available in shops yet, but it is available direct from the publishers https://www.troubador.co.uk/bookshop/travel/a-foodie-afloat/ or from us. “Although not without the odd moment of high drama, voyages in our barge “Friesland” hardly equate to the swashbuckling adventures of sailors on the high seas. We just potter along quiet canals and meandering rivers, climbing hillsides lock by lock, passing through shady cutting and dank tunnels on the high summit levels, then dropping down into the next valley through yet more locks, eventually to be disgorged into a river whose name we probably do not even know …………….. " Tam
  2. The long and the short of it - Vankerkoven shipyard at Pont de Vaux in Belgium May 2011 (ours is the little (24m) one on the right) Tam
  3. Lock keeper's garden ornaments on the Marne à la Saône canal (now renamed the canal Champagne à Bourgogne, but just to confuse things generally called the Heuilly canal by the boat people.) Tam
  4. Indeed, but when Johnson was asked what the new catchphrase "Stay Alert" meant he said it means "Use common sense". How that relates to the fact that it's presently possible to meet your mother and your father, but only one at a time unless you work for them, does suggest a weird interpretation of common sense at a higher level. Tam
  5. I may have detail wrong, but Ponts et Chaussées with responsibility for bridges and roads was reorganised as the Conseil général de l'environnement et du développement durable (the general council for the environment and sustainable development) in 1991, with responsibility for the majority of navigable waterways taken on by the newly formed VNF. The river Somme, the waterways of Brittany, and the river Lot are managed independently. I really enjoyed the Morgan-Grenvile books too. Tam
  6. We too went through on one tow of 20 when the alternative route on the Canal du Nord was closed for maintenance - that's 20 x 39m barges, with a 30m towline between each - that's an astounding 1400m length of tow. The last time we went through Mauvages tunnel the tug was out of order, and we were accompanied by a youth on his bike on the towpath as a VNF 'safety officer'. He got bored cycling so slowly and simply sped away when we were halfway through. Tam
  7. Some vandal in his youth wrote your name on the wall halfway through the Riqueval tunnel. 🚢 🙄 Tam
  8. .. as follow up to Dav and Pen, this is us as part of the train of loaded and empty péniches assembled for towage by similar electric tug at the 5670m Riqueval tunnel on the St Quentin canal in N. France, and then Di at the fore end ready to cast off the 30m tow line from the empty boat at the exit. Tam
  9. 😃 well punned. Although it would be foolish and probably rather pointless to be moving a boat there at this time, the EA can't go quite as far as banning all movement (other than by reason of works or water levels making it impossible) as there is a public Right of Navigation. Their notice quoted earlier in the thread says "The restrictions aim to minimise contact to slow the spread and in line with this we have switched powered locks along the non-tidal Thames to hand-wind self-service only to protect our staff and river users. The restrictions also aim to stop all non-essential travel in any event and so it is not expected that there will be many, if any, movements during this time." As you noted just now, the guy may not have read anything on the EA website and have been moored in the pound above Sunbury. I guess there are explanations for how it got there on Facebook or whatever but I don't go there. Tam
  10. It's slightly easier to remember buoys and navigation marks with the continental concept of right bank and left bank - right bank is on your right as you stand looking downsteam, and the RED Buoys are associated with the RIGHT Bank (and in France I could tell trainees that the GREEN Buoyage went together with the rive (bank) GAUCHE too 😃). The problem here is they just seem to have thrown in whatever came immediately to hand. Given that they do know of the danger that could leave them liable in any argument. They don't seem to have "Closed to Navigation" or "Works Ahead" signage as far as I can see, but a line of red? buoys across the river with some associated notice saying the lock is closed (or whatever) should do the trick. Tam
  11. Many people will not have easy access to internet and stoppages really do need to be marked where and when they occur, not on a web page. Tam
  12. Mike has answered this, but cardinal buoys are not for use on narrow waterways such as the Thames. Apart from anything else there is no requirement for boats to have a compass as compass bearings are pretty much irrelevant there. There is a very simple system of channel markers and isolated hazard marks which Mike describes which relate to the direction of flow of the river, and all river users should be familiar with those. Tam
  13. I'd agree - 30s-40s maybe. Tam
  14. It doesn't sound quite right to me. Stop planks grooves made with cast concrete would not generally be separate self-supporting items - they'd be integral with the edges of the narrow section of canal where planks would be used. Nothing else comes immediately to my mind though. Tam
  15. 🙄 You were lucky that they all returned to work with that steel cable across the opening at head height. Tam
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