After wandering about the Foxton Lock Junction where the Grand Union (Leicester Section of the Leicestershire and Northampton
Canal) joins the Grand Union (Leicester Section of the Market Harborough Branch) and the Grand Union (Leicester Section of the old Grand Union) we met Margaret who was also out looking for us. We returned to Meg and moved up and moored directly behind “Doris”, Margaret and Simons boat and enjoyed catching up over a cuppa.
Martin and Marian arrived late afternoon just in time for a couple of pre-dinner drinks before we headed to the “Foxton Locks Pub” for dinner. It was a very busy pub serving “pubby” meals looking over the canal; still we had a good evening before they headed back to Flagg.
Sunday we joined up with Margaret and Simon and wandered up and down the locks, visited the Canal Museum before heading back to the same pub for a Sunday Lunch, where Margaret confused the young barman by asking for a sherry! All enjoyed a very congenial Sunday Roast, before leaving early afternoon.
This junction is situated at the bottom of a 10-locks staircase, 2-flights of 5 with a small, but adequate (just)
passing area between. These narrow boat locks were built in 1810 but in 1900 an “inclined plane” was built, this is a system for raising boats between different water levels. There were two counter balanced caissons that the boats were carried “afloat” in. Not only did this method of moving the boats quicken up the process, the caissons were built to carry two narrow boats or one wide beam barge. This
enabled bigger loads to flow from Leicester to London or north, onto the river Trent and up to the North of England. Unfortunately this marvelous piece of engineering came rather too late and was abandoned in 1911 then dismantled in 1928. I visited this site about 30-ywars ago and then they were raising funds to re-build it; today nothing has changed, they are still trying to raise funds to re-build it.
Sunday evening and we met up on Doris again for a fun packed evening of Phase Ten, it’s the “skip cards” the cause aggressive
humour you know!!!!! Later we said our farewells, as Margaret and Simon want to be first in the queue at 0800hrs to head up the Foxton locks. These locks and the surrounding area is a real tourist attraction and there are “Gongoozlers” everywhere hence Simon wanting to get through the locks during a quiet period. We won’t be doing them for another week. when unfortunately it will most probably be around midday, just when the world and their wives are around!
Monday was a lazy day as we were still getting over all the locks we had been through en route to get here, but we did make the effort to
visit the site of the Incline Plane, our exercise for the day. Tomorrow we are heading to secure mooring in Market Harborough.