Friday, 22 August 2014


10 Bridges covered and 19 Bridges to reveal along with some sights that bridges don't appear. I have photos galore of the day.

Della is singing 'Doing the Lambeth Walk'

Looking back to Vauxhall Bridge. Glimpse of MI6 to port!
Della likes the Batter-se-a Power Station

Victoria (Grosvenor) Railway Bridge
Chesea Bridge
Battersea Park on Left
Albert Bridge
Battersea Bridge
Battersea Railway Bridge
Putney to Blackfriars by Riverbus
My place or yours?

Wandsworth Bridge
Fulham Railway Bridge
Putney Bridge
Stay alert Matey

Squirrel watch?
Are there squirrels or rabbits at HARRODS? Just asking!
A Bridge too far. Della was overcome by tiredness.
Hammersmith Bridge
Barnes Railway Bridge
Chiswick Bridge
Kew Railway Bridge

Kew Bridge. Catnap done and dusted. Where are the squirrels?
Cos I'm Happy Now!

Look  full throttle and no handson wheel!
Thames Locks, Brentford. This way to the Grand Union Canal. 
Richmond Footbridge, Lock and Weir

Twickenham Bridge

The penultimate....Richmond Railway Bridge 

Christine & Stephen snapping DB cruising past!!

**********Richmond Brdge**********

Looking over Richmond Park etc.

Moored outside Hampton Court Palace. One has to do it!

My name is Della the Navigator. I am on adventures no other dog could dream of.

1 comment:

  1. Love the one of Della singing "Doing the Lambeth Walk". Just needs Top Hat and Cane. Been to Teddington Lock, Hampton Court and Richmond Park. Pity we all weren't there at the same time.


A brief history

This is a blog set up by Chris and Sarah so family and friends can catch up with their travels on the British waterways in the summer of 2011. In 2010, I went to England with the idea of getting a narrow boat built. I had specific requirements so I thought that a new build may be the way to go. I e mailed to numerous boat builders, a great percentage of whom ignored me. The problem of having a family name of Laycock is that hotmail and a few others think that I am a porn star. At an early age you learn not to put C Laycock on your school books. But I guess that my nephew Paul did worse. Anyway I spent a very pleasant few weeks driving around the beautiful English countryside visiting boatyards, marinas, boat builders and just a few pubs. I had narrowed it down to two builders and in the last week I was in Devizes Wiltshire when I came across "Avalon Mist" 54 feet of throbbing neglected narrow boat. The past owner had lost interest, hadn’t maintained her and to add insult to injury had been made redundant. After a very short negotiation I was able to buy her for a pretty fair price. On the day the sale took place I had to beg her to take her trainers and a few rather suspect items of clothing, in other words she left everything. Lock stock and barrel.

Soon after the purchase I flew to California to meet Sarah and have a short holiday. Once back in NZ I started to try and organize works. The first thing that I learnt was that the marina does not allow any contractor on site, only their chosen ones, the excuse given is a concern about insurance, the suspicion is, graft, pay back, baksheesh, call it what you like. It is possible to take the boat off the marina to have the work done, but not really practical.

The first job to be tackled was to “winterize” the boat, i.e. drain off all the water, check the anti freeze in the engine and central heating and fit an automatic bilge pump.

No real problem there except communication, the mechanic just didn’t answer e mails. Difficult to do business like that.

The nice marina lady had a quiet word with him, and things did improve, thanks Debs you have been a star through out . He later confided in me the reason for this was that he was dyslexic, apparently a malady [he] claims affects a lot of mechanics.[It turns out that he is a great mechanic and a nice guy to boot].

That goes pretty high on my list of lame excuses, the top one being a really nice Irish guy Pat, who I had employed as a carpenter years ago when I lived in London. He was always a bit late for work, when I finally collared him about it; he said he could never decide what to wear to work.

Nice one Pat.

I digress, the boat was winterized, which was just as well as it was a cold one and the whole marina froze over.

Next job was to have her taken out of the water, have the hull stripped back to bare metal and have a bit of over plating done. There were a couple of areas where there was pitting, and I though if she’s out of the water, may as well do the job right, so a small amount of over plating and then the hull was blacked, and the engine bay partially de-rusted and then back in the water.

Seems like a good job was done, I had the marine surveyor who had done the original survey, check out all the major works and give me written reports and photos, so all good except once again communications.

I then came across a great guy, the partner of the woman who runs the marina and a carpenter/narrow boat fitter outer .He replaced the stern deck and did a great job, also did a great job on de-greasing, de-rusting and painting the engine compartment. A job I should have done myself, but I just didn’t fancy it, not only that be was great with communications and chasing other people up

So that takes us up to present.

There needs to be a bit of electrical work, not much. The outside is badly in need of paint, Sarah and I can do that and a bit of a tidy up inside, and then she will be a really nice boat.