This morning we cruised through Stainforth with this lovely Wisteria tree growing in a garden and next door what should be sticking up above the hedge but a Giraffe. Not real of course. Behind the houses is an 8ft flood defence wall for the river Don which lies behind it and is some 20-30 ft lower today. Just shows how much the river will rise in times of heavy rain like last winter. Through bridge were moored boats outside the New Inn pub and the occupants were just rousing themselves after a good night no doubt.
Motoring on to Thorne we stopped at Stanilands Marina for Autumn Years to have a pump out but it was too early. A lady on a boat in the marina called to us that they would be coming out on the Trent with us tomorrow morning. We dropped down through the lock and stopped for water at the services near to Princess Bridge. They are unusual in that they have finger pontoons to moor bow in on. Made for easy filling of water. There were a couple of boats moored there over night as the visitor mooring adjacent was full. Once watered we motored on to Blue Water Marina where Autumn Years had a pump out and we both topped up with diesel. (75p/ltr).
At Maud’s swing bridge we caught up with Nb.Erzenmyne (the boat coming on the Trent with us) as Mark, the lockie from Keadby, was there to make sure that the bridge worked OK as they had had to do some work on it earlier. He also met us at the next bridge and operated it for us as it could also be a little difficult to operate. A really nice chap and the one I had spoken to about going on to the Trent.
At Crook o Moor bridge, whilst June operated the barrier for the one side, the Signalman had to operate his level crossing gates as the railway adjoins the canal bridge and otherwise a vehicle might stop on the level crossing.
Before we could moor up by Keadby Lock we had to pass through a swing bridge and immediately afterwards Vazon Sliding Railway Bridge. This bridge is operated by the signalman and slides back across the canal although the rails actually cross the bridge at an angle giving a strange effect as you pass through.
All three boats moored up on the visitor moorings and after a cup of tea we went to see “Old Mark” as opposed to “New Mark”one of the three lock keepers on duty, all called Mark. He was a lovely chap and plays golf at Woodhall Spa, a great course. He advised us on the river and when to leave Torksey for Cromwell Lock the next day. Opposite us is moored this old sailing barge called Spider.