Monday was the day when we set out to get to Berkhamsted to moor-up Albert for a few days while I took a trip to Scotland. The weather was a bit brighter than on Sunday but we appeared to have lost the long periods sunshine of earlier days.

Until Apsley we were accompanied by NB Tacet. Although Tacet was single-handed, being accompanied in locks made life easier for both boats. As we progressed north we passed Robin & Laura and NB Miss Matty on their way to Little Venice. Maggie had a good chat lockside about future boating plans.

I photographed the back of the old Ovaltine factory site (now flats), primarily because Maggie's mother Mollie, remembers it so well from the 1940s that she always asks about it when we pass this way. Unfortunately, you cannot see the conserved art-deco facade from the canal, only from the railway. I also photographed the lovely display of pansies at Lock 70 near Kings Langley.

Pretty display of pansies, Kings Langley

Former site of the Ovaltine factory from the canal

After a brief lunch stop at Boxmoor we made our way towards Winkwell (and its automated swing bridge). Before we passed under the railway bridge we passed the Yarwoods Royalty class narrowboat Victoria going south, presumably to the Little Venice Cavalcade, which is at the weekend. She looked very smart with brand new paint. The cabin sides were very much as shown on page 50 of Edward Paget-Tomlinson's Colours of the Cut, but she now has a conventional exhaust not a funnel as shown in the book. Judging from her Historic Narrowboats web site entry as recently as September 2009 she had a completely different colour scheme. No wonder I got proud smiles from the steerer when I photographed her. She does look terrific and a credit to whoever painted her.

Fore-end of Victoria approaching Albert near Winkwell

Flamboyant signwriting on NB Victoria

As we approached Top Side Lock (56) near Berkhamsted a heron began fishing in the lock as we operated it; confirming our view in an earlier post that they are becoming more bold.

Heron at Top Side Lock, Berkhamsted

We finally moored up near Castle Wharf in Berkhamsted after passing through 22 locks in about 9 miles. We plan to move Albert back to Yardley Gobion over the weekend.