Up the Delph flight with no problems as an early riser had come down and set all the locks in our favour. Once we were out the top we continued to Merry hill where we moored outside the shopping centre.
Brenda set off to have a look around and found it to be a much larger place than the last time Jannock passed. The layout seemed designed to confuse and disorientate the shopper. Despite Brenda’s obvious need for therapy it seems that retail is the not the one. Shame that the huge Asda is at the very far end and not near the canal like the old Sainsburys used to be.
Graham stayed aboard Jannock and did useful technical things (as well as having a shower ;^) We had lunch and then set off into the sunlight for a pleasant afternoon’s cruise. Along to Blowers Green lock where Graham dumped our rubbish at the sani-station located in the old pumping station. Then round past Lodge Farm reservoir where we could look down on Birmingham from the top of the ridge. Just after this we found ourselves being observed by a couple of goats on the steep slopes alongside the canal.
At Windmill End junction we decided to turn right and continue on the Dudley No. 2 canal all the way down to Hawne Basin. There are interesting scultures along the towpath on this canal and we really liked the ‘Graffiti Artist’ who was supposedly painting ‘Toll Man was here’ on the side of the old Toll collectors house – shame modern yoof has also graffiti’d there.
Along this canal old industrial areas have been replaced by new housing estates although the industry returns before Gosty Hill tunnel and continues on after. Immediately after the very low (in places) tunnel was the site of the old Stewart and Lloyds steel works which closed in 1967.
We reached Hawne basin after 6pm so just winded in the entrance and retraced our path back to the entrance where we moored for the night on the edge of an industrial estate.