Saturday, 19 July 2014

Bath and Bristol on our to do list

Rocky has been quite adventurous lately. We recently had a rest and recovery weekend aboard Princess Lucy and on one of his walks, he made an impressive attempt at surfing. Either that or he was building a life raft. He found an old pallet in the River Goyt just down from The Peak Forest Canal at Whaley. Perhaps he was frustrated at not being able to take the tiller.

At least it made a change from him trying to find a sheep round every corner.

Visitor Moorings in Bristol
We have just returned from our first cottage break with Rocky in a converted barn in the ancient village of Compton Bishop in Somerset. He got to run his heart out on on the beach and had fish and chips in Weston Super Mare, so this was altogether a different holiday to boating. However, we decided to check out the possibility of bringing our boat down to Avon. This would be the furthest South she could get to from the Peak Forest. At our usual snail's pace, it could take 6 weeks (maybe more). But with work interrupting our boating adventures, this can't happen any time soon. It's at the ideas level but Rocky still insisted on checking out the visitor moorings outside the Arnolfino Art Gallery. Because you never know. It might happen one day.

Bristol harbour is most impressive especially on a steamy summer day where the number of visitors in flip flops and shorts could persuade you that this is the South of France. It is full of boats (and ships) of all shapes and sizes and the harbour is lined with smart cafes and bars. People messing about sipping skinny lattes.

The modern cosmopolitan version of this harbour betrays little of its massively important role in the slave trade except for the naming of Pero's bridge after an African slave brought to Bristol.

We met a Big Issue seller with his lovely little dog Reggie who told us that they were just about to kick off the huge Bristol Harbour Festival and how good it is. So we were much attracted to the idea of hanging out there on Princess Lucy.

We also had a trip to Bath and found the moorings there to be right on the edge of surely the most attractive regency city in the Western hemisphere.

Unfortunately the prettiest moorings (see picture) are now closed following the eviction by Somerset Council of a line of liveaboards. Rumour is that the council plan to install electric and water facilities and charge for future use of the moorings. The moved boats appear to be still on the Avon, but to the south of the city in a CaRT controlled section . There was still plenty of spaces though and Rocky was happy enough with them, and the Avon.

Dream on Rocky. You have to have a dream. We'll get there one day. You'll see and by then you'll be on the tiller whilst we do the locks.