I am Linda and along with my husband Richard and our dog Muffin we enjoy our summers on the UK's canal system

Sunday, 30 June 2013

Littleborough (Rochdale Canal) – Saturday 29th June

I thought I saw the sun when I woke up but it soon disappeared behind a cloud, however at least it wasn’t raining. 

Somehow we managed to miss Cwm leaving and had to negotiate ten locks on our own – all set against us!  Six of the locks are known as Slattocks or Laneside locks – why on earth they have two names I don’t know.  At the top we found Cwm moored happily with Ian and Polly (Ian’s wife who had joined him last night) having lunch!  We had thought we would stay on these moorings for the night but they were right beside a busy road and a service station.  Ian said that they were moving on too so we managed to get our acts together for once and both set off at the same time! 

An overspill weir under a road bridge
We had to go under the M62. This had been one of the biggest challenges that faced the re-opening of the Rochdale Canal.  Fortunately, culvert for a farm track provided an answer.  The canal now deviates from it’s original course and a new lock has been built.  A floating towpath runs along the tunnel under the M62 – fine for a narrow boat but a wide beam would have to book a passage and the towpath would have to be moved. 


The new canal under the M62
We then hit Rochdale, fortunately the canal runs to the east of the town and, in fact, you wouldn’t really know you were anywhere near a town of 96,000+ inhabitants.  Richard wanted to visit B & Q and fortuitously there were some moorings close by so he ran across the road and got what he needed.

I had to laugh at a paragraph written in the Pearsons guide.  “The Pennine hills – which have been shadowing your progress out of Manchester like Red Indians keeping tabs on a wagon train – begin to let themselves be seen: intimidatingly, you have to cross them!”  How true!!!!!
 
Rochdale
We passed by Clegg Hall.  Built in 1618 it was once a pub but now looks pretty empty.  Either side of it are a rather swish house with huge security gates and a stretch limo in the drive and an old mill which has now been converted into flats.


Posh house
Clegg Hall
Old mill now converted to flats
Our destination was Littleborough where there are moorings however on arrival these were taken by a couple of boats all locked and deserted so we went up through the Littleborough Bottom Lock and moored on the lock waiting bollards!  As we hadn’t seen another boat on the move all day we weren’t worried!

Coming into Littleborough
Richard and I wandered into Littleborough in search of Dave’s Fish and Chip shop – apparently very good – they were I can assure you!!


River Irk Moorings (Rochdale Canal) to Littleborough Lower Lock
8.43 miles
17 locks
2 swing bridges
 

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