Wednesday, 1 May 2013

Glory Be To God - Tuesday 30th April 2013

A lovely bright sunny morning so we were up and off by 7.30am enjoying a leisurely cruise along the Pewsey Valley. We think this is the nicest part of the K & A with its glorious views over the surrounding hills and White Horses etched in chalk on their sides. It is also a lock free 15 mile stretch of canal with only the odd swing bridge to interrupt your cruise.
As we leave Devizes we pass this magnificent show of daffodils and model narrowboat which someone on the adjacent allotments has carefully tended to welcome boaters to the town.
1 Devizes Leaving
Soon out into the countryside we pass under Lady’s Bridge and enter Wide Waters, an attempt to make the canal seem like a lake, rather like Tixell Wide on the S & W canal but not quite so large.
12 Lady bridge and Wide water
As we negotiated Wilcot we again spied the pole lathe (without the pole) but this time it was being worked and the gentleman told us he was making a Beech Bowl.13 BeechBowl
The lovely wooded areas of the Pewsey valley.14 pewsey valley
Just outside Pewesey Wharf contractors are carrying out dredging work on behalf of C&RT and were very quick to move the equipment out of our way as soon as they saw us approach. They seem to be making a very good job of the dredging and rebuilding the banks and towpath.
15 dredgeing
June took a turn at the helm and Phoenix kept her company whilst I made a coffee and charged the computers. We were buzzed a couple of times by the local Police helicopter no doubt keeping an eye on the canal after  a spat of thefts over the last few months.
11 June at the helm
As we  reached Wootton Rivers Bottom Lock we came upon a lady being trained in locking single handed by a training company and had to wait a while for her to come down the lock as she learnt the correct technique. She had just bought her boat and sought professional advice before embarking on her cruising.
Whilst waiting I spotted this Grey Wagtial on the bye-wash preening itself.
16 Gray Wagtail
There is a real mixture of boats on this section of canal and here are a few examples, the first has all sorts of plants aboard, the second is a tiny wooden vessel and the third is a Dutch Tjalk which I saw in this months Towpath Talk for sale at £67,000.2 Boats
Mooring spot
Once we had moored up above Heathey Close Lock on one of the few stretches of Armco I walked back to the village of Wootton Rivers composed almost entirely of timber framed and thatched houses. The pub, The Royal Oak, is a free house and on Tuesday nights has a pie night for £6 per head. Wootton Rivers
St Andrews Church in the village is somewhat unusual as if you look closely at the clock tower you can see that one face has numbers and the other letters which spell out “GLORY BE TO GOD”. Inside the mechanism is equally eccentric being assembled from a bizarre collection of cast-off agricultural implements.5 Glory be to God
Wootton Rivers is obviously a wealthy village with many Porche and Audi cars adorning the driveways as well as some impressive gate posts.17 Posh gate
Even Phoenix had a gatepost named after her.
4 Phoenix


  1. What a fabulous village! As you say, obviously a lot of money around! One can dream! Isn't it good though that we have the opportunity to discover lovely places like this? Love the picture of the wagtail. Would like to know how you so cleverley put 4 pictures within 1 frame? Everyhting looks really lovely. xxoo

  2. Hi Angela
    Lovely to hear from you and yes there are some very nice and wealthy villages around here. as you say it is nice to dream.
    I have an app for my computer which puts the photos into a collage before I upload them to the blog. You can put them in many different formats to suit your project. Glad that you like the format.
    Hope to catch up with you later in the year.
    Best wishes
    Bob and June