Four Bickerstaffes, all lined up in a row

That’s Back On Board, or Bevy of (Beautiful) Bickerstaffes. Take your choice.

Wandering back from the pub last night

When I last updated it was September last year. We were on the Shropshire Union Canal. After that we cruised up to Chester, where we had a rendevous with Stu and Carrie, two of our American family. We took them to Llangollen before returning Beau Romer to Fettlers Wharf Marina for the winter. Martyn and I spent the winter in Wareham in the house.

Happy memories from 2022, crossing the Chirk Aqueduct from England to Wales with Stu and Carrie

Now it’s April and the 2023 crusing season has begun. We have plans to come all the way down to Bristol, and after that, who knows? We have set off with Andrew and Penny on Seren Glas and are right now at the very end of the Leigh Branch of the Leeds and Liverpool Canal at Pennington Flash, which is beautiful and peaceful. Many people are strolling the towpath enjoying a lovely warm and sunny Good Friday. We are moored up with three other Bickerstaffes; as well as Seren Glas, Perfect Harmony with Sheila and Gary on Board, and The Last Derbyshire Miner crewed by Mark. We’re also enjoying canine company in the shape of Yogi and Zac.

Passing Nigel and Diane, our marina neighbours, and friends on nb Escapology just before Parbold

We spent two nights in Wigan, as Wednesday was miserable and wet. This early in the season we don’t need to cruise in the rain, so we just hunkered down. Wigan is famous for several things, Wigan Pier I’ve mentioned before, Northern Soul music I haven’t (we’ll save that one) and I don’t think I’ve talked about pies. Wigan pies are reputedly delicious, although I’ve never tried one, and people from Wigan are known as Pie Eaters. I found out why, and it’s nothing to do with pastries. It goes back to the General Strike in 1926 when the miners went on strike in protest about pay and conditions. Wigan was heavily reliant on coal mining and Wigan miners were starved back to work before the miners in the nearby town of Leigh, who scornfully named them Pie Eaters because they had been forced to eat humble pie and give in first. One of the reasons we’re on the boat is because I love discovering these little titbits of history.

Mooring in Wigan

This year I think I’m going to add a few cruising stats to the blog. So far we have travelled 19 miles, 3.75 furlongs in 10.9 hours, come through 15 locks, and dealt with 6 moveable bridges.

Gary and Sheila kindly helping us through the Deep Lock at Appley Bridge

16 Replies to “B.O.B.”

  1. Lovely to have you back blogging. I hate to keep asking ‘where are you.’ This way I know. Look after yourselves this year.

  2. Great reading Mandella and love the titbits of history. Enjoy the sunshine this Easter weekend and go easy on the chocolate.

  3. Great to see how beautiful England is – seen from the canals – looking forward to following your travels – am planning to come “home” end of May – wonder where you might be then – I will be in Stratford-on-Avon on 28 May also plan visits to Merseyside and Yorkshire – Wakefield and Skipton – all canal places! Who knows maybe we can meet up – a cup of tea or a pub beer? Enjoy your travels Happy Easter Hugs Wendy

    1. How nice that you’re coming to visit. I’m pleased for you. We are going south so I might be able to see you in Stratford upon Avon. Fingers crossed.

  4. Great to see you all together and apart from Wednesday, you have had amazing weather. Safe travels ❤️

  5. HOORAY, you’re on the water again! Lovely to read you, sending Arizona weather your way as it’s lovely here today at 84! Puttering and tending the citrus grove. Love from us to you XXXOOO

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