Sunday, 20 March 2016

Spring Adventure - Week 2

Bosley Locks to Romiley

Monday 14th March - today we cruised from the bottom of Bosley Locks to Gurnett Aqueduct.  The locks are quite beautiful, in open countryside with splendid views across the valley.

These 12 locks are the only locks on the Macclesfield Canal apart from the stop lock at the beginning and are most unusual.  Both the top and bottom gates are mitred, meaning they both have two gates.  Usually there is only one top gate.
Once we got to the top of the flight of locks we stopped to put on water and empty out all our rubbish.  We then carried on to Gurnett Aqueduct and moored up for the night.

Tuesday 15th March - short but beautiful cruise today to Bollington.  As we left Gurnett we cruised under a snake bridge which carries the towpath across the canal to the other side. It meant the horses were able to remain tied to their boat as they crossed over the canal.

We then cruised through Macclesfield and saw the beautifully restored Hovis flour mill now converted into up-market apartments.
It was originally built in 1820 and was the home of the famous Hovis flour.

The canal then passes through beautiful open countryside until it reaches Adelphi Mill, once a silk mill and now converted into offices.

From here the canal crosses a couple of aqueducts and Bollington can be seen on the hill above the canal and West Bollington below the canal.  

Towards the end of the aqueduct is the impressive Clarence Mil, once a textiles mill and now housing small manufacturing units.  In the bottom of the mill is a delightful cafe where you can sit outside and watch the narrowboats drift past. 

Sun setting on Clarence Mill


Wednesday 16th March - cruised from Bollington to Marple.  Marple is on the outskirts of Manchester and is a busy boating centre with the junction of the Macclesfield with the Peak Forest Canal.  

Cruised past a field with resident alpaca, makes lovely yarn to knit with!!!

Some unusual duck life - love the headgear!!!

Moored up in front of a beautiful turnover bridge and explored the town of Marple.

Thursday 17th March - Dave and Toby spent the day in Marple, but I spent the day flying down to Southampton to be with our youngest daughter, Annie.  Her fiance had broken his neck playing rugby on Saturday and was having major surgery to fix the break with metal plates.

Friday 18th March - I flew back from Southampton and am pleased to report that the surgery was totally successful!!!

Began our cruise to Bugsworth Basin, later than usual start but felt we could get moored up before dark.  The Peak Forest Canal to Bugsworth Basin doesn't have any locks but does have two lift bridges and two swing bridges and is six and a half miles from Marple.

Dave operating a lift bridge.

En route, we passed the Swizzler factory with the over powering smell of sherbert!!

A splendid viaduct carrying the railway over the Goyt Valley, the trains look like toys in the distance!

We also saw the workshop of the boat painter and signwriter, Andy Russell, who did the wonderful artwork on Ella.

The signpost showing the left turn to Buxworth Basin.  The basin was built to carry limestone from the Peak Forest to the Ashton Canal.  This accounted for most of the traffic in it's day and coal was carried back to Buxworth to fire the lime kilns.

Saturday 19th March - spent the day in Buxworth Basin.  Walked along the canal to Whaley Bridge.  We saw three trading boats, they are attending the Easter Festival at Buxworth, but have taken the opportunity to trade whilst moored at Whaley Bridge.  A lovely boat called Golden Boyz sells pet accessories, great for Toby!

Sunday 20th March - made an early start this morning.  We wanted to fill the boat with water before beginning our cruise to Romiley.  We cruised back to Marple and then began the descent down the Marple locks.

There are 16 locks in Marple, all very close together.  They are fairly deep and quite hard work and a popular walk for people in the surrounding area.  People who like to watch narrowboats are known as 'gongoozlers'  Not sure what the origin of this is, but you can be assured you will always make more mistakes when you are being watched!!  

Once through the locks we had to negotiate a tunnel before arriving at our mooring for the night at Romiley.


  1. I think those are Llamas :)

    1. Oh dear, it was a choice between llamas and alpacas, and I chose the wrong one, sorry!! Must check out the difference! Thanks for pointing it out. Hope you enjoyed the rest of the blog?