Sunday 17 April 2022


Today's Canal - Shropshire Union

One of the reasons we stopped a bit early yesterday was top be within easy walk of a church for this morning. The area ahead is largely rural and parishes proportionately larger. Not all parish churches are sited next to the canal so options were unusually limited.

The main service at Acton was at 11 o'clock so we had a lazy start to the morning. At 10:40 we set off, a short walk along the towpath to Acton Bridge which is alongside the field that once played host to the Civil War armies who fought the battle of  Nantwich in January 1644. It was a short fight and most was over within a couple of hours - the Parliamentarians emerged the victors.

The church and churchyard had been specially decorated for the occasion. The service was well led by a local priest (85). Although there was no stand-out moment , what they did was well done and matched to their resources. There were about 50 in the congregation. The sermon was careful constructed and a useful exegesis of one of the readings for Easter Day.

By the time we had walked back to the boat it was close enough to lunch time to leave starting off until later.

The weather was warm but a thin haze meant ghat there was little direct sunshine - it was very pleasant but perhaps not quite the background for photos that we might have wished.

We soon passed Hurleston Junction - there were several boats in the four lock flight but none of the queues that often form below the bottom and top locks. We will leave going down towards Llangollen until our next trip. For now we are heading on towards Chester.

There are a number of boats permanently moored on the stretch before Barbridge so we were well down to tickover as we reached the junction. Just as well as right tin front of us a boat shot out from the Middlewich Branch at some speed and without checking. Nor did it sound a warning!

Another short run to Calveley Services where we filled and emptied as usual. There is a paucity of such facilities until we reach Chester.

All well and we pulled through the nearby bridge - the short visitor mooring was full but there was a good bank immediately after with plenty of gaps so we pulled in. Any further and we would have had to tackle the Bunbury Locks and Mike was determined on a lock-free day for once!

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