Sunday, 3rd September 2006:
The above picture, shows the captain of our vessel, 'GC', guarding us from the attentions of any stray Corgies that might have been in the vicinity - having traversed the full length of the Kennet & Avon Canal, we joined the River Thames at Reading and, until this morning, we were tied up against the pleasant 'Brocas' meadow on the Eton side of the Thames at Windsor. 'GC' being rather proud of himself lately having enjoyed some considerable success catching mice wherever we moor!.
Whilst on the Kennet & Avon Canal at Crofton, we had hoped to visit the historic steam pumping engines that once kept the canal topped up with water and also fed the Great Western Railway's steam trains on the adjacent main line. Unfortunately, the Crofton site was closed but we had a most enjoyable visit to the nearby working windmill and picked some blackberries en-route!
Back at Crofton there was time for trainspotting before we were joined by Sunny, Lisa, Richard and Ben (Son, Daughter-in-law, Grandson and dog respectively) who stayed aboard for three days to help us through the locks as far as Kintbury.
Although our vintage engine has been performing well so-far, it has now let us down rather badly with a damaged injector pump - this may have been due to an old wound from salt water corrosion many years ago but whatever the reason, the exterior hardening on the injector pump camshaft has broken down which, in turn, has caused rapid wear. The result of which is excessive mechanical noise and exhaust smoke. Hopefully, a replacement will be found soon and fitted so that we can continue our journey into London. For anyone reading this who understands old diesel engines, the pump is a C.A.V. in-line, self contained model - part number: BPE3B 100Y400/3S6265
The photographs below show, respectively, Alnwick at Crofton with a train in the background, Jane welcoming our family crew-members and 'Ben' hiding from 'GC'!
Where's that cat . . .
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© Graham & Jane Oliver 2006