Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

To Dunkirque and Beyond

Tuesday, May 31st, 2011

Hi since my last Blog things have taken a change of Direction. As you know we were going up the Kennet and Avon Canal to Bristol and on up the Severn to Sharpness and Gloucester but the story of the Alternator that would not charge has changed all this. By the time the problem was identified (bear in mind it has only taken 19 months ) which was that the alternator that charges the engine starter batteries was telling the Domestic bank alternator that it did not need to charge anything as the battery was full. The solution was simple cut the wire conecting the two and insert a relay now all is fine and the Domestic alternator works . Dont ask why it has taken so long to find this out!!. Anyway as I have said by the time this was done there was not enough water in the K&A for us and the River Severn is on restricted Locking with water shortages. We then met up with Fred and Tony on Bertilac who said we are going to Dunkirque and the Benelux countries why not come with us. This was just over two weeks ago ! It has been manic we have had to open a bank account in Malta so that we have a Euro Account arrange a Pilot change the Insurance to cover the trip apply for an EIN a European Identification Number that was another £45 obtain spares as the Pilot wanted at least 5 spare fuel filters for the crossing , we have had a duel fuel filter fitted bought extra Charts and made a dash down the Thames to Kingston as we are due to start out Tomorow 1st June. Passage plans have had to be done the boat packed up and secured for sea and the List goes on . I will endevour to take as many pictures of the crossing as I can and will post them as soon as we get an oportunity. For those of you reading this that we converse with by email bear with us as it will cost us £10 a Day to connect to the web to deal with our mail so we will restrict this to at the most once a week to make the most of the cost. I am going to try and connect via Wi Fi where at all possible and will use the oportunity to update you all when we get the chance.

Bertilac the Dutch Barge we will be crossing with

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Dragon Boat in Henley

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Nuns having a water fight I kid you not

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Alternative Transport on the river

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Rock Stars Recording Studio near Hampton Court

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French Brothers River Steamer

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Were Out

Monday, April 25th, 2011

Well! We finaly managed to get out of the Marina though not with everything fully functional. we now find having got a working battery moniter that the alternator for the domestic battery bank does not work! It is cutting out after about  a minute so we are having to use the generator to charge the batteries even after a full days cruising. So we are again waiting for an engineer.

We spent the first weekend in Pangbourne so that we could replenish Meat supplies. and took the first few pics.

Turtles on the Thames

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Fed Up Heron

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Drying out after a dip

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In Marlow now and a lesson in how not to overload your boat.

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Swim for it!

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Down to Windsor for Easter to find an easter bunny running wild. Lovely weather very hot we will leave on Tuesday to try and meet up with the engineer before guests next week end.

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Steam yacht Alaska

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Three Men in a boat

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Eaton Collage Quad

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Getting ready to Sail.

Sunday, April 3rd, 2011

As you will see from the latest pictures We have been a little busy of late. This is why I have been remiss at updating the blog. I have made a set of steps that hang from the side to make it easier to board when we moor alongside places such as Kingston upon Thames where the hard is at water level. After the man over board demonstration at the Dutch Barge Association Rally where I took part I have been pondering on the ability to recover someone who may be unconscious or otherwise debilitated. The solution I have come up with is to make a small add on modification to the Gin Pole I made for raising the mast so that I can use it over the side as a crane to winch a casualty to side deck height for recovery. We have now a rescue sling three rescue ladders of various types as well as all the normal life-rings and throw lines etc. Although we have jack-stays so persons working on deck can clip on so hopefully I will never have to use the crane/winch in anger.

I have started to make the boat sea ready by fitting cargo netting to keep my tools and spares stored in the lazonet( back of the boat) in place and I am waiting for some fixings to go into the floor of the Saloon into which I can screw strong eyes so that we can ratchet secure the loose furniture for sea.

We are waiting for two engineers to come before we leave the Marina The first who should be with us Monday to wire in the extra navigation, battery management and communications systems which will integrate with our existing gear making the Radar more efficient at plotting other traffic, and the other by the end of the week to fit new twin fuel filter/water separator’s in stead of the single one I have at the moment. This is a safety feature as when you go to sea sediment can be stirred up in the tanks which can lead to engine failure this I do not want. The result will be that I will always have one filter in service and one spare ready to be swichen in if needed.

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Cargo netting

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New improoved Deck Coating

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New Heading Sensor and Mast

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Detail of footing for MOB recovery system

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Gin Pole/ MOB crane recovery system

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New Nav and Communication gear

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Step for Carol!

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Christmas

Friday, December 31st, 2010

Hi everyone

Since my last posting we have had some more snow, I have slipped and fallen in to the Marina but luckily the ice was thick enough to hold even me! so I escaped with just injured pride. We have had guests for Christmas week and though our intention was to get out on the river we still had a great time which seamed to just fly past. Anyway we hope that you all have a prosperous and happy new year and look forward to meeting our friends out and about in 2011. 

Bah Humbug

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Lights

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Nanook of the North

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Ice on the inside

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Views of the snow all iced in

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Christmas Tree

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Not impressed

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Excited

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Happy Hampshires

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Fire Engine Gloves

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New Grandaughter

Wednesday, December 15th, 2010

Hello everyone!

Well we are again Grandparents meet our new Grandaughter Freya May and proud Mom and Dad she was born weight 7lb 14 oz on 13th December at about 4-10 pm and was in a bit of a hurry! Well done to Mom and Dad

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At Last a moment to give you an update

Sunday, September 5th, 2010

Hi!! We have done a lot of cruising, Carol has gained her International Certificate of Competence Inland  to helm the Boat and passed her CEVNI over two days with Bisham Abby Sailing School. the course was great and a lot of fun, we both learnt a lot and I ended up with The ICC coastal and CEVNI. It was worth making the time to attend the course and would recommend it to anyone no matter how long they have been boating you can always learn from other people.   We attended the National Waterways Festival and Dutch Barge Rally at Beal park. We have met up with some old friends and made some really good new friends as well. it has been a ball I have never laughed or drunk so much since my teens. The show itself was a bit of a Disappointment as there were not as many stall holders as there could have been but the displays were entertaining. The real benefit was in making and renewing friendships and catching up. It was also great to have so many Dutch barges and their owners there to network with and gain from their experience and knowledge.

More tomorow

Rowing Gig at Kingston

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Making an Eaton Mess

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All Dressed up

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Bertilac and Josephine ( Pipers together)

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Lucy Bea and Inevitable

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Lady Dill

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A Ball-less Ollie

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Get that Dog out of my ear

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About to st off on an Adventure

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Run out of fuel!!!

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July

Saturday, July 24th, 2010

Hello everyone We have been very busy of late which is why it has been so long since my last post. however I will start by putting up some more pictures on our various escapades and then later on will fill in the gaps with an essay.

Inevitable at Hampton Court

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The Gardens Hampton Court

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Henry’s Wine Casks

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Steamer at Windsor

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Rowing Course Henley

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Thames Traditional Boat Show

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Flypast by Lancaster

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Mole and Ratty

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Hot Dog

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Belfast and Tower Bridge from Inevitable

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Going Under

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In Lymhouse with Hampshire Rose

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Pictures Update

Monday, June 14th, 2010

boat-back.jpgSome more Pictures mainly from the Beal Park Thames Traditional Boat Rally

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A Lot of Cruising & Some Problems

Wednesday, May 26th, 2010

Since my last post we have covered quite a bit of ground. Having come back up river after leaving Windsor we moored just above Boveney lock where I used my chain saw to stock up on wood. moving on to We then made our way up to Henley and stayed for a couple of nights, then on to Pangbourne whilst moving here our main bilge pump decided to malfunction and turned on despite there being no water in the bilge. ( It was fitted with a digital sensor) having ordered a new one from ME&C we waited here so a friend could drop it out to usas he was comming to take us to a food and craft fair. Fitted and tested new pump and moved on again to Dorchester. This is a very interesting place although a mile’s walk  away from the river it was a Roman town built on the site of an Iron age settlement and has the best preserved remains of the type of fortifications in the UK. On leaving here we went back down to Gooring staying here for one night and then on to Thames and Kennet Marina where we left the boat for three days, hiring a car to travel back up to Staffordshire to visit our Dentist. On arrival back at the boat we went out and moored for the night at Sonning intending to go down the river to Hampton Court when we had a call from our friends on Narrowboat Hampshire Rose who were waiting for their Gold licence they were hoping to get out and move to Abbingdon so we decided to travel up river and try and meet up. We moved up to Gooring and moored for the night and the Following day left as soon as the locks opened during the trip on exiting Cullham cut we had a narrow-boat cut across our bow this was a very near miss as I just managed to avoid him. The boat behind me only just avoided my stearn,  we arrived late afternoon in Abbingdon and only just managed to moor.the depth of water was down to 1ft under the keel at times and the going was slow. We stayed here a couple of days but our friends still had not had their licence so as we had to meet guests in Henley we left Abbingdon on the 17th May hoping to stay at Wallingford there were no moorings left so we continued to Gooring. The3 following day we moved to Henley and it is here whils waiting for our guests for the weekend that the Generator failed after running it for 10mins. Rang the Boat Builder, ME&C and Vetus to start the ball rolling for the Warranty claim and continued to ready ourselves for our visitors. The Weekend was great hot and sunny, clear skies and fantastic scenery. We took them to Windsor and back up to Henley but during the weekend we realised that the Alternator on the main engine that recharged the Domestic battery bank was not working further calls to Vetus! On realising that we were now in trouble and in danger of loosing all power to the boat we quickly arranged to pop into Thames and Kennet so that we could hook up to the Shore power and arranged for the Engineer to meet us there. 26th Engineer arrived Generator repaired, a wire had come adrift inside. and Alternator replaced so we are mobile again. Tomorow we are going to Pangbourne to finaly meet up with Hampshire Rose It is Geralds Birthday this weekend so we shall be partying a bit. More Photoes below.

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Mapeldurham Hall

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Mapledurham Mill This is where the Eagle has Landed was filmed

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Moored at Dorchester

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George Michaels Pad

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Egypt on the Thames

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High Rise Goose

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Steam Yacht Alaska

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Steve and Jane dog and me

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Sue

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What on Earth

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Steam Launch Duet

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62 Year Old Gerald and a Younger Ann on Hamshire Rose

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St Georges Day Parade Windsor

Thursday, April 29th, 2010

Hi all last weekend we attended the Mattins service in St Georges Chapel  Windsor and the Queens Scout  parade in the quadrangle of Windsor Castle afterwards. The salute was taken by HRH Prince of Wales and the new Chief Scout Bear Grylls. I was there because I had been awarded the Bar to the Silver Acorn in the St Georges day awards, a complete but very pleasant surprise. It was a great day as you will see from the pictures and we were able to meet up with old friends from Staffordshire again . All in All a very pleasant day.

Outside St George’s Chapell with John Barker resipient of the Silver Wolf the highest Award in Scouting and very well deserved. John has been and still  is a stalwart of Scouting in Staffordshire. 

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Queens Scouts on Parade

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HRH The Prince of Wales inspecting the Parade.

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HRH with Bear Grylls the Chief Scout.

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Marching off after the Parade

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The Band of The Coldstream Guards

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Myself and John

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John Pauline and Me

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After the Parade

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