Well it's certainly been sunshine and showers again today, one minute the sun is out, the next it's tipping it down! There's been a surprising amount of activity on the canal today.
Mike and Cath slacked in the basin this morning for supplies on their way to Braunston. Here's a picture of their boats with Jim Taylor's Empress in the background. The motor boat is called Radiant and the butty Regulus. They were both built in 1935 for the Grand Union Canal Carrying Company at Northwich in Cheshire. They were the first of eight pairs built to the 'E' type design and have become known as the Middle Northwiches. This class of boat are quite unique for narrowboats as they have rounded chines (where the sides meet the bottom) and slight vee bottoms, meaning that the boats "rock and roll" which did make them unpopular with the boatmen, although it was intended to increase their speed by being more streamlined than a conventional boat. More details can be found in Matt's website here.
I managed to catch a shot of one of the sparrows (that are currently nesting in the eves of the shop roof) resting on the Tee stud of Regulus. These little birds enjoy nesting at Norbury as they get plenty of tit bits from our customers dining outside the tearoom on the wharf!
Radiant and Regulus were soon to be on their way again, only to get through the narrows when the heavens open. They will be heading up into Birmingham and via Hatton. Have a good trip Mike and Cath - see you there.
We have turned around Sovereign Lady and Phantom today as the other boats that went out last week went for two weeks. We have also had two day boats out, they've had a bit of a damp day, but they still have enjoyed themselves.
Bernard and I have made a temporary repair to the pressure washer meaning that Ralph can use it when he is pressure washing. Fred has finished blacking the boat on the dock after he turned the hire boats around and Ralph has done the internals on the boats and now shown them out. All in all a good day :-)
Lets hope for some more sunshine and less rain tomorrow...