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Whitewater

Stratford Canal

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We take the ex working boats Scorpio and Swift to the river festival, there are a couple of tight locks but we do get there.

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Just checked Nicholson's and it says 70'

it's the width that is challenging in a couple of the locks above Stratford.

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Plenty of full length working boats have done it. But there are one or two locks which are tight on width. Modern boats at 6 ft 10 in beam have no problem (as long as fenders are lifted), 7 footers should be just about OK, but boats suffering from middle age spread may have problems.

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Some of the Wilmcote locks are tight for full beam boats. Lock 44 is the narrowest, but I believe some work has been done this winter to improve the situation.

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Can a working boat fit in the locks on the Stratford canal

 

We took Fulburne through a few years ago and did struggle in a couple of locks and bridges but persevered and got through.

 

Tim

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OK. Nicholsons says

 

Kings Norton to Kingswood width 7'

 

Kingswood to Stratford width 6' 10''

 

but of course those that have experience may know better.

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OK. Nicholsons says

 

Kings Norton to Kingswood width 7'

 

Kingswood to Stratford width 6' 10''

 

but of course those that have experience may know better.

The issue is, Keith, that few ex working boats had a design width as narrow at 6' 10". The nominal design width of a "Grand Union" "Town" or "Star" was 7' 0.5", but the reality could be different even when built, and over time they can spread and twist.

 

In fact lots of purpose built modern boats exceed 6' 10" for some of their girth.

 

The 6' 10" figure is a "safe" number, assuming the locks can't quite take 7 feet, figure, but the reality is that on many locks where Nicholsons or BW may say 6' 10", in fact a seven foot or more can pass. "Sickle" hasn't really been put to the test, but some of the T&M twinned locks are clearly marked that boats over 6' 10" should use the other chamber, but when we went up there, the other chamber was out of use!

 

So "Sickle's" nominal 7' 0.5" beam had to use the "not more than 6' 10" locks, in some cases, and in reality there was always plenty to spare. But the warning may apply to longer boats, particularly if the lock is a bit banana shaped. So "Sickle" may pass a lock OK, but a 71' 6" version of "Sickle", although easuring the same across, could still get jammed. Some locks a boat that will not go through pointing one way, can be passed if you turn it araound and go through backwards.

 

The narrow canals where some ex working boats are known to have problems include the Southern Oxford, Souther Stratford, Llangollen & Chesterfield, (and undoubtedly some others!).

 

Edited:

 

Only just noticed that Whitewater is the apparent owner of "Baldock", an ex GUCCCo ""Large Woolwich" "Town", with a cabin conversion on. I don't know if Baldock is on the nail for width, or has any middle age spread, but "Towns" are as likely to get stuck as just about anything, and on a converted boat, you often can't tighten chains to pull the sides in. So the question is a valid one, and based on what those who operate "Fulbourne" have said, my guess is that with "Baldock" the only real answer is try it and see.

Edited by alan_fincher

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Yes Alan, that is why I posted "but of course those that have experience may know better." smile.png

 

Last year we helped a 'modern' boat that had got stuck in one of those locks marked boats over 6'10'' use other lock.

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