Shallow moorings and charity boating

We took Albert out onto the cut on Sunday (May 21st) to carry out some small jobs - mostly touching up the hull blacking. After a frustrating series of attempts to moor-up that failed because of the severe lack of dredging along the canal from bridges 60 to 64, we finally manage to moor up near the Navigation Inn at Cosgrove to do one side of the hull, and near Solomons bridge to do the other. At one time this section was a delightful place to moor - but not now. I know we draw around 30" but that is not that deep compared to loaded working boats and when we got stuck (firmly) near the centre of channel, it didn't improve my mood. I suppose this is the boating equivalent to complaining about potholes in roads. The only difference is the Grand Union mainline in Northamptonshire is the boating equivalent of the M1 near Newport Pagnell. I don't see many potholes in the MI!

In the late in the afternoon NB Comfortably Numb arrived at Cosgrove from the south and moored up behind us. We had met them back in April at Thrupp. In the meantime they had gone down the Thames and Kennet & Avon to Bath and were now going north to attend the Crick Boat Show at the weekend. It was good meeting them and swapping stories about Thames & K&A boating.

We turned just above Cosgrove lock and then met the first of a dozen (mostly) hire boats that were taking part in the Walk4Matt charity walk from Rugby to Twickenham timed to arrive at the Guinness Premiership Final this coming weekend. The walk is fundraising for the Matt Hampson Trust. You can get a flavour of what they are doing and follow their progress from their blog. The boats act as floating overnight accommodation for the sponsored walkers. Some "walkers" were in wheel chairs; some in canoes. In addition to the normal commercial sponsorship each boat was sponsored by a Premiership rugby side. The boats came from a variety of companies including Willow Wren, Ashby Boat Company, and Clifton Cruisers who appear to be a sponsor of the event. What a great idea!