We left Pershore on Sunday, the weather having brightened up again, but the wind still fairly strong. At least on the river we can up the speed to help combat it. We were heading for Comberton Quay as a planned overnight stop. When we arrived there were 2 cruisers already moored having a BBQ, so we had to squeeze in where we could. They later moved and we moved back.
We had a walk up to the village, although nothing much there except some lovely thatched houses and a church. Oh and a red telephone box being used for used books to borrow, which was a neat idea. We got talking with an elderly lady who happened to be a local councillor and she was telling us about the decline of Evesham. Such a shame. We decided to stay a further night and then moor a bit further along if we could. The weather on Tuesday was again fantastic as we set off and the wind had ceased. The next lock we had to negotiate was Nafford lock. A bit of a dog leg approach, and the photo below shows a boat that obviously wasn’t watching. A bit disconcerting as you turn the corner to the lock.
Safely negotiated we carried on, and the first mooring we had chosen was already taken. (We found out on our arrival at Tewkesbury that this boat had outstayed it’s welcome on that mooring, and was going to be asked to leave). The second mooring we chose was by Eckington bridge, and there were workboats moored there whilst re-pointing work was being carried out on the bridge. The mooring was very close to a car park, so we decided to carry on. Strensham lock was next where we topped up with water. The Avon book says that moorings were here, but they seem to have been taken over by private moorers, so on we went, deciding that we now had to carry on to Tewkesbury. The Strensham lock was a bit of a nightmare. The bottom right hand gate wouldn’t stay open so I held it open and Charlie picked me up from the lock landing, though this proved difficult to then manouvre out of the lock space. After a bit of to-ing and fro-ing (and me reversing into the wall and scraping the lower paintwork gggrrrhh), we got out. We found out yesterday from another boater that there was a pole to wedge the faulty gate, but I hadn’t seen it. Under the M5, and into Tewkesbury. On the way a dragonfly decided to land on my shoe and I managed to get a shot of it.We went past the lock here to find a mooring as we were now a day earlier than planned. We turned and decided to moor against the concrete wall, but on reversing didn’t notice the overhang, and the stern cover and a bit of paintwork got hammered again (more gggrrhh). We asked the lock keeper if we could stay 3 nights (£3 per night), and she agreed as it isn’t busy.
We had a walk in to Tewkesbury on Wednesday to the abbey, along the Severn Ham (a flood plain that is used as common land for livestock grazing). The abbey of St Mary’s looms over this little town, and is well worth a visit. It was originally a Benedictine abbey and was consecrated in 1121. It survived the dissolution of 1540 due to the townspeople buying it from King Henry VIII for the sum of £453 (the cost of the lead and bells). Today the abbey has 13 bells, and is one of only 100 in the world that has so many bells.
Tewkesbury is very medieval with it’s tudor buildings and many small alleyways.
Today we had another walk around the town browsing in the many little shops in the town. Tomorrow we will be leaving for Worcester as our two week Avon licence is up; a brief spell on the Severn River, then back onto the Worcester and Birmingham canal. Better remember to slow down then.
Lastly a picture of a dutch barge that went through the lock last evening (my new boat I wish).
I have enjoyed our two week river cruise and the weather has been fantastic, which has helped. The area does need rain, but I’m glad it didn’t rain much for us. I feel like I’ve been on holiday.