Monday, 21 May 2018

Nestled in among a sea of white - 16th May

Wednesday 16th May 2018
Saxilby to Burton Waters Marina
3.25 miles, 0 locks

It was a very short walk for Monty and I this morning as the towpath only extends the length of the moorings cut off by the railway behind us and a main road ahead.

Saxilby seems to take a great pride in its history judging by the number of information boards there are scattered about.  There is certainly no shortage of reading material.

Sadly at least one of the pubs (The Ship Inn) mentioned below is no longer in existence

It was just a short trip, but oh how boring - definitely a Roman construction - straight as far as the eye can see.

We were afforded a distant view of the Cathedral - I hope for better as we get nearer to Lincoln

When we headed off on Tuesday to find a pub to have dinner, our guest and driver had hoped to get to Woodcocks, but we failed to find it.  Today we just stumbled upon it en route!  From the road you have to head to Burton Waters Marina.  I rather suspect we ended up with a better meal at the Pyewipe, so it was a happy outcome.

The entrance to the marina is a pair of lock gates with the on site restaurant in the distance

We moored up on the diesel point as the visitor moorings were full of cruisers.

We reported to reception (below).  We were expected and all the paper work was ready for us.  We were escorted to security (yes this marina is large enough to have a whole security team) to be issued with key fobs to allow us access to our pontoon gate, rubbish areas, elsan (they spell it elson for some reason) etc and we then made our way through

a field of white cruisers of all shapes and sizes

to moor up with the very few (probably about 15) narrow boats.

We really were nestled in among a sea of white cruisers, many to them were big, very shiny and very expensive.  The wind was up, so mooring was done with great care!

This really is a huge marina surrounded by houses and with a few businesses on site. There are financial services, solicitors, hairdressers, beauticians and a couple of restaurants, but nowhere to buy a pint of milk!!  Boat sales is big business.

I have to say I do agree with this sentiment.

The local avian residents seem to be grey geese all busy with little ones and consequently it is dodge the goose poo every time you walk anywhere,

Thursday morning Monty and I headed off to walk along the towpath - you do get a better view of the marina entrance from up there

There is more reading material along the way

It was a tough life

We made it to the Pyewipe and the sea of tepees - it was just over a mile, but oh how boring. Apart from the notice boards there really was nothing of interest to look at.  Still it emptied the dog prior to us heading home for a few days.  Normal service will resume shortly.

Sunday, 20 May 2018

Brolly weather - 15th May

Tuesday 15th May 2018 
Torksey to Saxilby
3.25 miles, 0 locks

We were determined to try those famed and much discussed sausage rolls, so an early lunch at the cafĂ© was agreed.  Sue and I headed off before that to find Torksey Castle and maybe the church as well.

For obvious safety reasons you cannot get close to this ruin of what was, I am sure, a magnificent Manorial Castle.  There is sufficient left to make the trip worth while.

We knew there was a church, so we continued on into the village in the hope that we might find it.

We passed this intriguing house name - we were sure given the lock diagram it must have some connection to the waterways, but if it does I have failed to find it.  All I got when I googled Nookin, was a link to a street in Haxey - a village we lived in many moons ago!  If anyone has any more information I would love to know what it means.

Our mission was successful and we found St Peter's Church, Torksey and wonder of wonders it was open and is, we gather, open every day in the summer. 

All of the above was interesting, but by far the most fascinating was the gentleman tucked away in a corner at the back of the church  - he is the visiting post master!  Yes the post office is situated in the church just once a week for around three hours on a Tuesday.  He visits other villages in the area on a regular basis - some even three times in a week.  As well as providing PO services he has a few basic provisions and was even able to supply Sue with a Telegraph, but sadly no Times for us.  So if your Nicholson's states there is a PO and store in Torksey now is the time to amend it to Tuesday mornings only and in the church.

His van was parked outside which we failed to notice on the way in!

Back to the church - we had read the information below and went in search of the head which we thought we had found, however......

although it is pretty grotesque there are no fingers pulling the mouth into a wicked grin, so I think we failed.

A text was sent to the men to say we were leaving - the plan was they would then head to the cafe, however, they had given up waiting and were already there!  Two diet cokes, two teas (one with milk and one with lemon) and 8 sausage rolls were ordered.  Were they worth the effort - most definitely yes.  The pastry was crisp and the sausage meat full of flavour, The service, however, was another matter altogether.  I think (well I hope it was a one off bad day) the lady must have got out of bed the wrong side.  Everything, was just too much trouble.  She asked if we wanted to split the payment to which we replied 'yes if it is too much trouble'.  Sadly her answer was 'Well yes it is'!! 

Suitably replete we were off and heading for Saxilby along the Fossdyke Canal - there is no mistaking it is Roman - it is long, straight and somewhat boring.

The weather, however, was perfect - Ken deployed his umbrella to act as a sunshade rather than to keep the rain off.

We arrived in Saxilby to find two moorings in welcome shade - a little close to the railway, but the trains were not that frequent and did not bother us overnight.

The best part of this mooring was a selection of picnic tables, barbecue pits and bins.  We were able to make use of the table closest to us for tea, cake and biscuits when a friend from our RAF days came to pay us a visit.

After tea, Helen squeezed us all into her car and conveyed us to the Pyewipe for dinner and what a meal it turned out to be.  One of the best we have had in a long time.  Chris and I went here first in 1972 in what turned out to be our first date. This was the first time we have ever returned.  We were both at RAF Scampton at the time and one Friday evening he went off on a date and was stood up.  I had gone to 'Happy Hour'  (a Friday tradition) in the Mess and was still in uniform and had not been to dinner when he returned around 7pm.  He said 'well I am hungry, are you and if so shall we go and find some dinner somewhere?'  I changed, off we went and had chicken and chips (C) and scampi and chips (me) in the basket (remember that?) and the rest, as they say, is history!!

On the tow path by the pub is details of the Proctor Trail from Torksey to Lincoln and this point was of particular interest to us all given our military backgrounds.