Thursday, 22 August 2013

To The Wey

Thursday 22nd August 2013
On Saturday, after moving off the Thames at Brentford we continued up The Grand Union, intending to stop for lunch at a pub. A couple of locks up we came across a broken down narrowboat. Tracy and Alice live on their boat, Arwen. The poor things motor sounds quite sick, and keeps stopping. We towed them up as far as The Fox at Hanwell, where they said they could call a friend for help.
After lunch we continued as far as Bull's Bridge and got a cook it yourself takeaway from Tesco's.
Sunday we chugged up to Paddington again and said our farewells to Paul and Jaqui as they boarded the train back home to Bristol.
On Monday we set off once again from Paddington Basin, headed for Bull's Bridge. On Tuesday it was back to Brentford, ready to go back out on The Thames.
Wednesday we were let out onto The Thames at 2.00 pm, and headed for Teddington Lock.
Once there we went through, but the lock keeper said he was a bit too busy to deal with Thames licences at the moment. Come back on the morning!
Now, the signs say that overnight mooring is chargeable, so we weren't too happy, but we didn't intend to go much further anyway.
While we were there, this fake paddle steamer came past.

And I tried to get a picture of the moon over the Thames. 
In the morning I toddled up to the lock, where the keeper informed me that I didn't need a day licence for The Thames because there was a special ticket for boats going just to the Wey, £10.00. Wow, we weren't expecting that! No mention was made about the overnight mooring either.
Having parted with coin of the realm we set off, heading for Weybridge.
Past Kingston upon Thames.

Where we were overtaken by this trip boat.

Continuing along we passed close to Hampton Court, where there is even a visitor mooring if you want to stop and explore the place. The next landmark is Walton Bridge, where there appears to be a new bridge. The old one looks as if it is being dismantled.

We soon reached the junction with The Wey and turned left onto it. You have to keep your eyes open here, as there seem to be several ways to go. There is a sign, which points down the narrowest of several waterways to be picked from. If it hadn't been for that sign I'm sure we would have gone the wrong way at first.
The entrance lock here is effectively a staircase. the first chamber is very large and actually goes around a corner. When we arrived the bottom gate was open, and a sign said that if the gate was open boats should enter, then moor up and contact the lock keeper. There was a boat already there and they had seen the keeper, who was on a break, but would be back soon.
As promised he soon turned up and both our boats moved into the second chamber.
After coming out we moored up and I went to the lock house to get our licence for the river. National Trust members get a 10% discount, so we ended up paying £64.80 for our one week stay.
We then moved up and through Weybridge Town Lock. So far it looks quite pretty.

 We then moored up for the night and I took a walk into Weybridge, but didn't go too far into town before returning.
The boat in this satellite view is just about where we are tonight.,-0.467761&spn=0.001818,0.005284&t=h&z=18

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