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Visiting Manchester/ mooring


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11 hours ago, nicknorman said:

Hi Arthur

 

The Cheshire ring is a nice route but the bit through Manchester is fairly grim and to be honest, probably the worst U.K. city. Which is a bit of a disgrace considering how wonderful Mancunians think they are!

 

Anyway, we have traversed Manchester a few times and never had any problems. So long as you don’t mind blokes having sex with each other in the middle of the day at the lock in the shadows under Piccadilly station etc

 

OK places to stop are Portland Basin area, Droylsden marina (Top of Ashton flight), Thomas Telford basin (read small print on notice carefully - at first sight it says “no mooring” but a closer look reveals you can moor for 24 hrs) and Castlefield Basin on  Bridegwater. The latter doesn’t have much space for visitors these days. Mooring in Manchester is not easy but that is no problem because in fact Manchester is a shit hole and no sane person would want to do anything other than pass through fairly quickly. Liverpool, Birmingham, Leeds etc are all 1,000,000 times better!

Leeds is also somewhere to get through as quickly as possible...both when visiting by boat or car!  

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Well Thank you all for your responces definitely food for thought.

I'll probably do the Cheshire Ring shame Manchester is on it. Dont get me wrong i'm no shrinking violet I used to be a fisherman fished out of Newlyn and some of the lads there were quite rough but all had respect. My boat is my home and i dont want it messed up by some low life. I'll probably do the Cheshire Ring clockwise stop somewhere on the Bridge water and get into Manchester/ Piccadilly Village in the morning if thats possible and up the Ashton ether the next morning or the day after.

I've looked on Google Maps and the only boats i can se are at Castlfield ,Telford basin is empty of boats. anyway thank you all for your very interesting replys I need to run this past my crew I might get voted out yet,

Arthur

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12 hours ago, nicknorman said:

Hi Arthur

 

The Cheshire ring is a nice route but the bit through Manchester is fairly grim and to be honest, probably the worst U.K. city. Which is a bit of a disgrace considering how wonderful Mancunians think they are!

 

Anyway, we have traversed Manchester a few times and never had any problems. So long as you don’t mind blokes having sex with each other in the middle of the day at the lock in the shadows under Piccadilly station etc

 

OK places to stop are Portland Basin area, Droylsden marina (Top of Ashton flight), Thomas Telford basin (read small print on notice carefully - at first sight it says “no mooring” but a closer look reveals you can moor for 24 hrs) and Castlefield Basin on  Bridegwater. The latter doesn’t have much space for visitors these days. Mooring in Manchester is not easy but that is no problem because in fact Manchester is a shit hole and no sane person would want to do anything other than pass through fairly quickly. Liverpool, Birmingham, Leeds etc are all 1,000,000 times better!

I'm a Mancunian, born in Rusholme. It saddens me to say it but I agree, Manchester is a terrible city. I suppose it could be described as cosmopolitan; a heady mix of the modern version of yuppies liberally laced with homeless folk with a majority living in depressing poverty. Add rampant aggression, violence and other crimes, and an arrogance in the people not seen anywhere else west of the Pennines.

 

I suppose it does have the gay village though.

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9 hours ago, dmr said:

My understanding is that New Islington was going to link the Ashton and Rochdale canals but was designed by the council who know even less about canals than CRT :)(hence all the repairs going on now). It was not until the basins were dug and the bridges built etc that it was realised that there is a significant level difference between the Rochdale and Ashton canals and so the Ashton side of the project was abandoned. I realise this level of incompetence is hard to believe but unless you can correct me I reckon its true.

 

......................Dave

Dunno. I’ve never looked into any of that. 

 

I would like to see the Basin on the Ashton used. It would only need a few boats to start using it and it would attract more. 

As I say, I think the lift bridge works. 

 

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11 hours ago, dmr said:

Central Manchester is not so good, but as you go further from the centre, especially on the Rochdale, it gets much worse, Manchester makes the Walsall canal look quite pleasant.

 

................Dave

The Rochdale Nine are all in the centre. The OP wouldn't see any other bit of that particular cut on the Cheshire Ring.

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We have been through Manchester twice this year and on both occasions stopped overnight at Ducie Street, just above the Nine, on the off side. No problems. In fact,we had no people problems anywhere.

 

Yes, if you have an sensitivity at all for your fellow humans there are things that cause anyone lucky enough to be able to support themselves and to work through anything unanticipated, to at least wince. Some of the housing leaves a lot to be desired and many surroundings are not overly photogenic. However, every year that we come thorough, like any old urban town or city, there are clear signs of improvement, not least because of the insatiable demand for new housing.

 

But our one piece of universal advice for travelling through places with a former ill repute is to treat everyone, and I mean everyone, with respect, talk to people, involve them in lock operations etc etc. It is amazing how many interesting conversations, albeit brief, you will have. The only places you are less likely to find chatty people are the hyper expensive housing areas where the developer sold over priced properties on the basis of a 'canal view' and then encouraged the buyers to campaign against all things boaty.

 

Give Manchester (or anywhere like it) a try and by all means come back and tell me I have rose tinted glasses, or I am blind altogether!

  • Greenie 2
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It used to be possible to moor in Thomas Telford basin and get access with a code from one of the locals, unfortunately now access is via key fob only so if you moor there you can't get out -- or worse, back in again...

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3 minutes ago, 1Arthur said:

Thanks for that getting out won’t be a problem because I don’t plan on staying anymore than the night. I would leave early the next morning. 

It does mean you can't go out for a meal or a drink, there are a couple of decent places to go. Very quiet safe mooring though...

Edited by IanD
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As regards the moorings at Castlefield, when we were there a couple of months ago, the basin on the south side (which I think is called Grocers Wharf) was completely full of what looked like long term moorers. It was also very difficult to turn at the end, so don't even attempt going up there.

But in the basin on the north side (next to the YMCA and Liverpool Road) there was plenty of space, and a good working water tap (difficult to find as there aren't any signs, but it is under the railway viaduct). It's a nice mooring -the only downside is the noise of the trains if you are a light sleeper.

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23 minutes ago, 1Arthur said:

So if not Telford where would you suggest? I appreciate this information thank you

Arthur

There are moorings nearby (Piccadilly Village?) but I've never used them. Castlefield is OK if you can find a space but no guarantee there will be one, we had to moor on the curved bank at the far end of the car park with the bows about six feet out so we could get off at the stern. Also there's a bright light which stays on all night ?

Just now, John Brightley said:

As regards the moorings at Castlefield, when we were there a couple of months ago, the basin on the south side (which I think is called Grocers Wharf) was completely full of what looked like long term moorers. It was also very difficult to turn at the end, so don't even attempt going up there.

But in the basin on the north side (next to the YMCA and Liverpool Road) there was plenty of space, and a good working water tap (difficult to find as there aren't any signs, but it is under the railway viaduct). It's a nice mooring -the only downside is the noise of the trains if you are a light sleeper.

When we were there a few weeks ago the north side where the water point is was completely blocked off, divers etc. Don't know if it's open again now...

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All the moorings at the end of the Ashton before you go down the Rochdale 9 are pretty okay. There are offside moorings at Piccadilly village and Telford basin as already mentioned, and shortly after (if I'm remembering right there's an aqueduct and it's just after that) there are some towpath moorings which would be easier if you wanted to go into town (there are rings and bollards) just before you go under the bridge to get onto the rochdale. Moored there for a couple of weeks before and had no problems whatsoever (well, one drunk guy tried to get onto my boat to pretend he was on the titanic one early morning, but he was very apologetic when I told him to get off). I didn't feel unsafe at all, and left the boat quite a lot to go off into town. It was actually fairly quiet at night. You can also moor round the corner at the top of the locks, though mooring slightly away from the top lock itself can be a good idea as you get some drug dealing and weed smoking going on (they won't bother you though, when my brother did the Cheshire ring they moored there and he said they were very considerate-they had a drug deal going on outside their boat one evening and overheard one of them saying 'shh, we have to be quiet, there are people sleeping on that boat' ?).

 

The Rochdale 9 themselves are grim. Went for a walk to decide if I wanted to down there one day...decided I did not. It gets slightly better after the first few ones that go under the buildings though, and I thought Castlefield was nice. No problems with the Ashton other than rubbish in the water. If you've any need to moor before heading down the Ashton canal, on the peak forest as you approach the junction is good (after the liftbridge-and there are some rings in the grass there if you can find them and dig them up...). There's a big Asda nearby which is handy.

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Be aware that the towpath is closed for construction work at several of the Rochdale 9, you can't get from one lock to the next except by boat. Normally this is the case for a couple of locks, right now it's more than half of them.

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Thank you very much.

 I won’t be doing this until the spring as soon as the winter stoppages lift. I’m moored in Bradford-on-Avon on the Kennet and Avon canal and hopefully go north in the spring and the Cheshire Ring is on my to do list.

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23 hours ago, Goliath said:

Not knocking it as a city. But shit for boating.

I'd agree but as said, bringing jobs and investment to Salford Quays has taken priority over the provision of elsans to a few narrowboaters.

 

23 hours ago, Goliath said:

Maybe it is one of the most visited cities, and maybe those who did visit wished they’d gone somewhere else

Maybe it's people voting with their feet. The numbers speak for themselves - a million visitors a year. Liverpool has approx half that number.

 

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On 01/10/2019 at 23:35, dmr said:

My understanding is that New Islington was going to link the Ashton and Rochdale canals but was designed by the council who know even less about canals than CRT :)(hence all the repairs going on now). It was not until the basins were dug and the bridges built etc that it was realised that there is a significant level difference between the Rochdale and Ashton canals and so the Ashton side of the project was abandoned. I realise this level of incompetence is hard to believe but unless you can correct me I reckon its true.

 

......................Dave

 

I understood the reason the canal doesn't go through was the significant cost of diverting the utility pipes and cables which run under the road between the two basins.

Edited by David Mack
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1 hour ago, David Mack said:

 

 

 

I understood the reason the canal doesn't go through was the significant cost of diverting the utility pipes and cables which run under the road between the two basins.

My explanation is much more entertaining :)

 

.............Dave

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11 hours ago, Señor Chris said:

I'd agree but as said, bringing jobs and investment to Salford Quays has taken priority over the provision of elsans to a few narrowboaters.

 

Maybe it's people voting with their feet. The numbers speak for themselves - a million visitors a year. Liverpool has approx half that number.

 

I find this very hard to believe, Liverpool is a great city to visit, and Albert dock is claimed to be the most visited attraction outside of London.

Manchester has very little for the visitor except for the science museum and that's a minority interest. Its just a gob of nasty high rise housing.

Maybe these visits are political calculations a bit like CRTs visitor numbers, perhaps it includes all those people who live just outside Manchester and "visit" everyday in order to go to work?

 

................Dave

3 minutes ago, Philip said:

Is the run through Manchester any worse than the first 4 miles of the Caldon canal, which seems to have a reputation as bandit country?

Yes

 

...............Dave

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11 hours ago, Señor Chris said:

 

 

Maybe it's people voting with their feet. The numbers speak for themselves - a million visitors a year. Liverpool has approx half that number.

 

Statistics.........Statistics - you can make numbers say anything - how many of the million go back for a second visit?  (the same applies to Liverpool of course.......)

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I've lived in Manchester, specifically Castlefield Basin for a few years now, and whilst the Rochdale 9 don't look very nice to cruise I have not heard of any issues with passage except those related to bad maintenance

 

Castlefield Basin is quiet by night (though there are currently building works between 8.30 and 5.30)  and excellently placed for a visit to the science museum, the John Ruskin and central libraries are stunning, and there are many excellent quirky boutique shops in the northern quarter near New Is or Pic basins.

 

The city itself is vibrant and very explorable, and you can spend 72 hours in the Basin to explore it!

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