Another day and another early start, after going to bed at 9pm. The alarm went off at 5am and there was not a sound outside, nothing and I mean nothing was stirring apart from us of course.
All the usual morning things took place before we slipped our moorings and headed off at 5.50am.
As we passed Westport Lake the sun came up and bathed it in sunshine. This lake is the largest body of water in the city and is very popular with fishermen, and walkers. The site was designated as a Local Nature Reserve in July 2004, they now have a children's play area and visitor's centre, so worth a visit.
The one thing that tells Stoke-on-Trent apart from other places is the Bottle Kilns which still stand. The Stoke-on-Trent skyline was once dominated by 1000's of smoky "bottle kilns" used for firing the pottery ware, but sadly most of them have been knocked down, this morning we saw five, which have all been preserved.
On passing Middleport Pottery, I could not help but think about what the working conditions would have been like when this was first opened in 1851 by Burgess & Leigh and is still producing pottery today under the guidance of Rosemary and William Dorling, this is one of the few pottery factories to stand the test of time.
The sun was shining as we came through Burslem and Keith took this photograph, which I think is fab.
By the time we reached Etruria, we had still not seen another boat, so had the locks all to ourselves. The water was flat calm because of no wind at all. The only people about were dog walkers and cyclists on their way to work. Non taking a blind bit of notice of the signs asking them to dismount from their bikes at the bridges.
By the time we reached Meaford we finally met other boats on the move, thankfully this made our move down the flight dead easy. Just after leaving the bottom Meaford lock we passed Kismet, and said a quick hello to Colin & Jenny Askin, no doubt we will get to chat to them later. We are now moored opposite the Whitebridge Industrial Estate, which is where we will be for the weekend. As we sorted ourselves out Tina (boat painter) and Rob came past on their boat Burma, they are going out for a few days, but we will be seeing them again.
Tomorrow afternoon we have a Tesco food delivery arriving, which will save our shoe leather and my shoulders.
Off to see friends later, so will chat soon xx