Further down the canal we passed by Boots Head Office and factory much of which seems to be being knocked down. It also looks as though they are putting in a new bridge next to the original Boots entrance bridge.
Beeston Lock is unusual in that it has the windless welded to the paddle winder making it easy for the crew. It is probably done that way as the paddles with the red top on at each end of the lock have to be left up so that there is a constant flow of river water through the canal. I must say that the canal is the cleanest one I have seen in any city.
About 100yds before the bridge I could hear a whistling and wondered where it was coming from. As we rose in the lock I could just see this mobile home with a cage and parrot in the front garden. The odd sculptures are made form the roots of Teak Trees and imported by the house owner.
Back on the river the Trent became more accommodating with chalets and moored boats along several reaches.
At Cranfleet Lock I could make out through the binoculars 4 C&RT Volunteers operating the lock and one of them was showing a Green Flag indicating that we should enter the lock. They show a Red Flag if the lock is in use. They kindly took our ropes on the end of long poles and looped them around the bollards for us to control the boat in this deep sided lock. It was a real treat and most unexpected to have the lock done for us. The lock has a very smart garden and on the towpath side is the Nottingham Yacht Club with a boat perched on the roof.
We continued up the cut and through the stop lock to find a large group of people waiting around. One of them informed us that the Flying Scotsman was due to pass by in 10 mins. so we decided to stop and moor up to wait for it. Well over an hour later it eventually arrived puffing steam as it exited the tunnel and came to a halt on a side line to allow an inter city train to pass. It had been delayed because or sightseers on the line at points down south.
The Flying Scotsman in its true glory crossing the River Trent.
Continuing on to the end of the cut we turned sharp left and then in a few hundred metres turned sharp right onto the River Soar with its lovely riverside chalets and views of the Ratcliff Power Station. When we reached Kegworth Deep Lock or New lock as it is now called we were in a queue of 3 boats waiting to go up. It is a very deep lock and takes some time to fill. It took us about an hour to eventually get through but it allowed us to chat to several of the other boaters. Above the lock is this lovely old stone built mansion.
The Soar is a very different river to the Trent, much narrower and winding and the water levels can rise in the wink of an eye as it is the main drain for the City of Leicester further up stream.
We decided to stop as the afternoon was going by so quickly and so we moored up just passed the Otter Pub and sat on the bank in the warm weather for afternoon tea and biscuits with clotted cream and strawberrys. Its been a few weeks since we have been able to do that.