Despite being moored alongside The Ship Inn over night, we had a really peceful night, but neither of us slept particularly well and we have no idea why.
I was woken in the early hours to hail pinging off the back cabin roof. We really are having allsorts of weather thrown at us on this trip.
It was a beautiful start to the day. Paddy and I enjoyed a lovely walk along the canal listening to the Skylarks and Plovers. A Dipper flew ahead of us, skimming along the surface of the water.
Back on board, animals were fed and fires stoked, we set off at 7.50 am, with a cool breeze in our faces.
The one thing along this stretch of the Leeds and Liverpool Canal is the swing bridges. They are all worked in different ways and you need your handcuff key and C&RT key.
We got to Maghull, Methodist Swing Bridge and it was not working. I inserted the key and did as I was instructed, but no flashing lights, absolutely nothing, but to make sure I was not a complete numb skull, I repeated the process and still nothing. So I rang C&RT and spoke to Linda, who said she would get a crew out to come and help us. Within 15 minutes two gentlemen arrived to assist us in getting the bridge open. Apparently it was electrified 6 weeks ago and they are having a few problems with it. Trust us to be the ones who have the problem, still they soon had us on our way. In all we did six swing bridges and all of them were operated in different ways. It keeps it interesting.
We are now moored at Hancock’s swing bridge, Aintree. We moored up just before a very heavy rain shower arrived, we could actually see it coming from a distance.
Lunch is cooking in the back cabin stove and all is well in my world today . Lunch eaten and decisions to be made as to whether we move through the two C&RT operated swing bridges or wait till the morning. Decision was made to go for it a long with a boat that had joined us. You have to wait for C&RT to operate the bridges between the times 9 to 10 am and 1 to 2 pm. Two boats were coming the other way. When the C&RT gentlemen turned up, they were the same guys who helped us through the swing bridge in the morning. 1.50 pm we set off with the rain steadily falling.
With both the C&RT manned swing bridges negotiated, it was on to Litherland. Now the rain was coming down in stair rods and both of us were a tad soggy by the time we reached the last swing bridge, which allowed us into the Litherland moorings, which are right by a Tesco .