Hello… Oh my goodness it’s bright. I’m
not complaining I’d rather have this than the rain. Oh yes. This is the reason we don’t do 4k. [Laughs] So this is where we were yesterday… and we’re moving today. Thank God.
Noisiest mooring spot ever, but we are mooring today… a little clue… we are going to do three canals… In one day. No no no no no no no. Three canals in one hour Oooooh! There you go. First things first we’ve got to get
down Kings Lock, that one back there. We’ve got to get some fuel and some coal and stuff, but we’ve got to go down the lock backwards. So we can get fuel. so guess who’s driving? Not me [Laughs] [Music playing] This is the shortest canal in the UK.
154 feet long. So why does it exist? well the Trent and Mersey which is on
your right-hand side was already here when the new cut, the Middlewich branch
of the Shropshire Union arrived here in 1829. The owners of the Trent and Mersey saw
a money-making opportunity and they didn’t want a direct junction with the
Middlewich Branch. They wanted to build this short canal which they charged a
toll to use, so any boaters wanting to go from the Trent and Mersey to the
Shropshire Union, the Middlewich, or vice versa had to pay for the privilege to do so. [Music playing] So that was the Wardle Canal, all 154
feet, 47 meters. What do you reckon? We would have got up there quicker had it not
been for a boat coming down the lock as we came round the corner.
But this is where it brings us out. Wardle Lock, it’s also known as Maureen’s
Lock. It’s a bit of a story attached to this that I never knew about until today. A lady called Maureen Shaw used to live in that lock cottage just behind us and
her whole life revolved around boats and canals, she was born on a narrowboat,
she was adopted by the Jinks boating family and spent all her working life on
the narrowboats and then she retired and spent her final years in the
lock cottage just behind us. She was known as Auntie Maureen locally,
she’d come out and help the boaters with the lock, give advice to people new to narrow boating,
but she also looked after this lock, she was very protective and
woe-betide if you mistreated it. I’d like to have seen a reaction with Shaun if he wasn’t doing
the paddles right. In 2012 when she died working boat Narrowboat Tay, took Maureen
from the cottage here down onto the Trent and Mersey to her final resting place. One of Maureen’s wishes was that we carry on talking about the working boats
of the olden days. We tend to forget that the canals were built for business and
industry, carrying cargo like coal and salt and sand and textiles around the
country. It helped to build hundreds of communities and it helped to develop
some of the massive engineering marvels that we appreciate today. It would have
been fantastic to meet Maureen, Auntie Maureen the boat woman of Wardle Lock and
I’m really glad that I found out about her story. [Music playing] In March 2018, a section of the canal
right here just outside Middlewich, at this point, collapsed. Over 2800 square
meters of the embankment was just washed away down there into the River Wheelock.
It drained the whole stretch of this bit of canal from that lock just
behind us right down to the Trent and Mersey Junction just under a mile away
and it left boats just stranded sitting on the bottom of the canal. It was about
to become one of the Canal and River Trusts biggest engineering challenges.
A project to reopen it. It closed an important link on the Cheshire Ring.
The Middlewich Branch links the Shropshire Union canal with the Trent and Mersey a
little bit further east and all this began just before midnight on Thursday
the 15th of March 2018. Nobody knows exactly what caused it, but most people
believe that it was vandals that opened all the pebbles on the upper and lower
gates at Stanthorne Lock and then down Now somebody at Wardle Lock a mile further down
near the Trent and Mersey. Now somebody noticed the open paddles on the
Wardle Lock and closed them, but nobody checked the paddles on the Stanthorne Lock
further up, which was still open and that meant all the water coming down from
Stanthorne Lock have nowhere to drain. So that mile-long pound started to fill
up and eventually over topped the canal at its lowest point right here next
to the aqueduct. So the overflowing water started to wash away the towpath and
before long seventy meters of the embankment had collapsed leaving this
massive crater and according to the institution of civil engineers about
four and a half million gallons of water washed away 2,800 cubic meters of the
banking. It quickly drained this mile long pound between here and Wardle Lock,
it left over a dozen boats stranded and somebody must have been watching over
this guy, he was fast asleep while this was going on and his boat was left at a
right precarious angle just a few feet away from where the embankment collapsed.
The Canal and River Trust had to get a lorry in to lift the boat on by crane
and take it away to refloat it somewhere safe. Just over nine months after the
breach on the 21st of December 2018, this stretch reopened. Its thanks to the
hard work of volunteers and the engineers and the Canal and River Trust
for organizing the work to such a high standard. It looks like part of the canal,
it looks like it never happened, apart from this new bit of concrete you wouldn’t know and it’s a beautiful place to moor,
especially if you’ve got solar panels. [Music playing] Traaaaaaaainn! Sheeeeeeeps! Sheeps? Ooooh, train and then a faster train [Music playing] I hope you enjoyed the trains. Traaaaaaaaiiin! [Laughs] It’s getting on Shaun’s nerves now.
Shall I buy him a T-Shirt for Christmas? No! [Laughs] So we’ve been cruising for a couple of
hours, it is beautiful clear blue skies and it’s been lovely, there was a bit of
ice first thing this morning. Lot of lovely 48 hour moorings, so we’re
going to try and find somewhere nice to stop. These are nice moorings. They are aren’t they,
shall we stay here? Can if you want. [Music playing] Do you remember Tales of the Unexpected? Yes. Where that Roald Dahl thing? Yeah,
🎶Do do do do do do do dooo dooo!🎶 [Laughing] That’s the world of Fox’s Afloat filming,
whenever we get a camera out, we can be in the middle of nowhere people just emerge from boats and
trees and holes in the ground. You can be moored somewhere where you don’t
see or hear a soul for two or three days but as soon as you put that camera on… people start shouting from nowhere. it’s just funny. Do you know what’s done it. What?
Our fancy tripod. Yeah, our fancy new tripod which you can’t see, but you can
probably tell in the picture quality. [Laughing] We are about a mile away from Wimboldsley.
That sounds like something you say when you you’re drunk doesn’t it? Womboldsley! Where do you come from? Wimboldsley. Is that where they play tennis? [Laughing] It’s so lovely lovely mooring, I’m glad you found it funny. It is a lovely mooring and we
we kind of stumbled on it by mistake a couple of days ago. Yeah a couple of days ago. On that side is just like farmland and the railway which you probably just
heard and a farm truck that just seems to reverse all day long, for some
reason he never goes forward, he just reverses all day long.
Beep beep beep beep! Crazy. On that side is Winsford Top Flash. Have a look I don’t know why they call them flashes. I’d like to think it’s what I’m thinking
it is in my head, but I don’t think it is. Another one caused by subsidence from
brine pumping. That sounds rude as well [Laughs] We’ve got to get from here, we’re going towards
Nantwich in a couple of days, but the weather over the next couple of days is a little bit, Nnnn! And a little bit wayyyyy! They say it’s gonna rain and then it doesn’t, and then they it’s gonna be fine and then it rains. So we’re kind of taking our chances and going a couple of hours at a time between
breaks. So today we’re going from here near Wimboldsley, to Church Mins-hull
or Mins-ell or Minshull, there you go whichever pronunciation it is I’ve just covered it [Laughs] Yes, we did just cut something out [Laughs] Are we ready Yes. [Music playing] [Music fading] Hello and welcome to Church Minshull,
Mintshill, Mintshull, Minch. [Whispers] I have no idea. No idea. We’re near bridge 12, which is Eardswick Bridge,
Earswig Bridge, Earwig Bridge. I have no idea. [Laughing] I have no idea. and to be to be honest, I give up. Because it doesn’t matter how you
pronounce it, five other people will tell you that you’re wrong So let’s call the Earwig Bridge in Church Mincey. I don’t know. [Laughing] But we’re here and it’s, it’s beautiful You alright Maud? Cough it up. I’m still dying here. [Laughing] Poor old Shaun’s had man flu… [Coughs] for what seems like the last six months. Yeah. [Laughs] Bless him. and Dillon’s got it as well, When play with Dillon, we tickle,
on a morning he’s kind of all playful and he likes his belly rubbing.
[Whispers] Like Shaun. and when we rub his belly, he’s coughing on a morning. He’s like Yeaaahhh [Makes coughing sound] So here we are at Church Wincey… Wincey? [Laughs] it’s.. it’s lovely. We escaped the showers, we it got a little like drizzly, but we’re all right and it’s a lovely mooring, it is beautiful and we had the whole stretch
of moorings to ourselves. So we moored down there. Somebody moored up behind us
and put the generator on. Why? We have nothing against generators
because it’s winter and you need power and if you haven’t got good batteries
or you haven’t got solar you need a generator. That’s fine, fair enough. But when you’ve got a mooring that’s
got spaces for like 20 boats and you more right on the end of it and then they moor right behind you and
switch their generator on, the loud generator. I don’t think that’s polite
and I don’t think I’m being out of order by saying that it’s not polite, because
if I had a really loud generator and I wanted to moor here,
I’d at least moor away from the other boats. Tell me if I’m wrong, I don’t give a… a Wincey to be honest [Laughs] Thats the way I feel about it I believe in politeness and being nice. Yeah. If we were going to leave our engine on
to charge our batteries up then we’d park… we’d moor away from the other boats. But there you go that’s my rant. Thank you. [Laughs] So Church Wincey today… We’re not very far from Venetian Marina, which is
where we’re going on our next journey down towards Nantwich. But for today and for this
vlog, that is it and the sun’s coming out, lovely. Yeah, Look at that We hope you’ve enjoyed the
vlog. If you have please show your appreciation by giving us some thumbs ups.
Yeaaaahhh! [Laughs] Like the little graphic down below says, subscribe. If you click Subscribe and
then hit the bell, YouTube will let you know every time we release a brand new
video. It’s getting brighter. Brighter!
The sun’s coming out. Leave any comments, except on pronunciations or
generators or my rant down below. Or questions, or just chat, we do still
like to answer them all. It just take me all weekend, but I do like to and
anything else? I’m going to put the dinner on. Yeah, we’re having chicken something chicken something. I haven’t decided yet
but there’s some chicken in there. So till next week, thanks for watching.
Take care. see you later Taraaa! No… you can’t say that. [Laughing] When the new cut.. the shrop ye ye [Blows raspberry]
She put me off. There you go Now she put me off. Ahhhh! God why can’t I think of this Aeroplane! and something else that I’ve forgotten horse boat boaters… Arrrrgggg! That was going so well. YAYYYY!
That one was alright. When you’re trying to film
and some people are stood literally six feet away, just standing staring talking to
each other Oooo whose he filming for? I wonder if it’s gonna be on Northwest tonight? Just go! [Sniggers] The man in the boat will be out to
shout in a minute. Back in a minute. [Laughing] Weird Weird Good morning. Ten miles of canal and he just
comes and stands right next to me. Welcome to the world of vlogging. [Laughing] and I’ve forgot what happens next. Arrrrggg! Take three Who I don’t know how I do know how and I can’t remember what happened next. it’s not complicated is it Colin. I’ve forgotten again [Laughs] Bleahh Bleahh! Ramble ramble! aaaand, one more good look. that was all right wasn’t it? YES! that will do thank you goodbye [Music plays to the end]