1981 Redshank and Shoveller

A trip to Oxford and back from Rugby on two Willow Wren boats, Redshank and Shoveller. We were delayed at one point waiting for some crew members who never turned up. This led to us stopping short of our intended destination that night, leaving Mark Doran waiting for us in a pub at the top of Napton locks whilst we were in another at the bottom. He waited there until closing time but eventually he made his way to the boat (anyone remember how?) “Dai Evz” (David Evans) mended the landlord’s phone at the pub in Upper Heyford and we were rewarded with an extension. We were woken next morning by USAF fighter-bombers taking off.

A classic example of the “chalk on bridges” method of communication occurred on the way back. Some people wanted to stay in Oxford for a look round and we arranged to pick them up off a certain train at one of the stations on the parallel railway. However we got there too early and decided we had to carry on, leaving a message chalked on the overbridge saying “(Name of Boat) Get Back on Train and go to (next station). Amazingly, it worked!)

Dates:

Boats:  Redshank and Shoveller

Crew: Richard and Linda Atkinson (?), Pete Cash, David Evans, Jim Davies, Mark Doran, Hugh and Jeanette Mowat, Duncan Roberts, Pat Tidy

Route: Rugby – Braunston – Napton – Oxford and return

Stopping Places:

First night: Bottom of Napton Locks

One night: Upper Heyford

One Night:  Oxford

 

Photo’s:  These are the only ones to come to light so far.

claydon-top-lock oxford-canal-1981

Claydon Top Lock             On Oxford Canal

Emptying the toilet tank into a bowser

Emptying the toilet tank into a bowser.

shoveller-and-redshank-at-claydon-top-lock

At Claydon Top Lock

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