Saturday, 20 August 2011

Stockton Brook - Caldon canal

Captains Log

Canal Date                20h August 2011
Travels                 12 miles, 16 locks, 3 lift bridges
Current Location  SJ 921 520 Stockton Brook (Caldon Canal)

We had an earlier than usual start this morning, we were on our way by 7.30. Much of the journey was through Stoke on Trent and its associated towns. We were warned by several boater to watch out at Stoke. It does have a bit of a reputation. As it turned out we were not eaten by cannibals, shot by drug craze youths, or stoned by bored school children. There is not much to be said about it from a canal point of view. The canal is full of litter. You pass a lot of disused and run down industrial waste ground. The housing that meets the canal is mainly of poor quality. It is not an inviting place. It is a place that you want to get through rather than go to. They have spent a lot of money on the tow paths and the canal is in good order, but I would not consider mooring there over night. When we turned off the Trent & Mersey on to the Caldon canal things did not improve much. The canal winds its way through mile after mile of either housing estates or derelict industrial ground. We did find a chip shop for lunch in Hanley. We were not prepared to leave the boat unattended, so I minded the boat while Pam went to the chippie. It is, unfortunately, that sort of place. Once clear of the Stoke on Trent conurbation the canal opens out and is truly magnificent. A different character altogether. Well worth the effort of travelling through Stoke. We carried on some 7 miles up the Caldon before mooring up for the night. 9 hours travel & 16 locks is more than enough for us for one day.

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