About Me

My photo
After thirty years of hiring, I finally bought my own 50ft boat in 2005, which was built in 2001 by Andicraft at Debdale Wharf. I mostly cruise single handed and have no problem with that, although it does take a little longer than with a crew. My mooring is on the Wey Navigation, so I have a choice of routes on the Wey or the Thames.

Friday, 20 June 2014

The Grand Canal Tour 2014. On to Stafford.


I had previously arranged a mooring for a few days at Stafford Boat Club, while I took a train home, so that was my next destination. I had arranged for a tip-cat fender to be recovered by a fender maker in Great Haywood, so I took it up to Anglo-Welsh base, where Chris Shenton calls in every day for a chat with the boys. I arranged to collect it at the end of the week.

I was early at Stafford Boat Club, so moored up a few hundred yards before. The ground was very soft after a lot of rain and passing boats kept pulling the mooring pins loose and I had to hammer them in even further after every passing. The last straw came when a Viking hire boat came along at too fast a rate and I had to gesticulate to slow down, which they did to some extent. When I explained that they were pulling my pins out, they looked a little nonplussed. I should probably have said mooring spikes and they would have understood what I meant. The private boats seem to be worse than hire boats for speeding past moorings – maybe they all reside in marinas and have little understanding of passing moored boats.

Eventually, I pulled up to the boat club and spoke to Pete Hardy, the harbour master and he arranged a mooring on the main line, breasted up to another boat. The club was almost at the end of their 50th anniversary celebrations, so there were loads of people and boats there for the weekend – even campervans on the lawns!

I needed to wind the boat, so that I was stem to stem with the breasted boat I was about to moor next to. A hire boat was also coming the opposite way, so I gave two blasts on the horn to indicate that I was going to port, which brought all the boat crews out to watch the antics. I pulled into the marina entrance and waved the hire boat past, before attempting the turn, which was tight, with only feet to spare, but all went well with no wind to blow me about.

I asked my next door neighbours to give me a knock when they went to the bar, as I did not know anyone else. Much to my surprise after a chat and drinks, I spotted Mike and Jenny Moorse cross the room, so I excused myself from the present company and joined them. It turned out to be a very enjoyable and sociable evening after all............and there was EPA on handpump!
Stafford Boat Club moorings.
The Club House.
Wet dock and slipway.

All in all, a very impressive setup!

Thanks to the Stafford Boat club for your hospitality.




2 comments:

Brian and Diana on NB Harnser http://nbharnser.blogspot.com said...

A very friendly boat club

Oakie said...

Pleased to see you are reading my blog - thanks. Is it you who moor at the top of Napton locks by the Engine Arm?