2015 Route Descriptions Cruises 1 – 13

Cruise 1
Barnoldswick – Manchester
April 13th – 20th
67 Miles, 43 Locks
Canals – Leeds & Liverpool, Bridgewater
Station – Skipton/Colne

The first cruise of 2015 starts at our home base of Barnoldswick, we will cruise through a mixture of peaceful countryside and the industrial towns of East Lancashire. The Wigan flight takes us down 21 broad locks towards Wigan, we then turn onto the Leigh branch and the Bridgewater canal. We will have time to visit Worsley, a beautiful spot before cruising over the Bridgewater swing aqueduct and then into the heart of Manchester where this cruise will end.

Cruise 2
Manchester – Stone
April 20th – 27th
69 Miles, 46 Locks
Canals – Bridgewater, Trent and Mersey
Station – Manchester

Leaving Manchester we will retrace our route to Waters meeting and then continue along the Bridgewater canal through Lymm to Preston Brook where we will join the Trent and Mersey canal. Although on this trip there won’t be time to descend the Anderton Lift we hope to moor there over night with time to explore. Continuing along the Trent and Mersey canal we will climb the lovely Cheshire Locks before cruising through the Harecastle tunnel. The cruise will end in the lovely market town of Stone, acknowledged as the birthplace of the Trent and Mersey canal.

Cruise 3
Stone – Rugby
April 29th – May 6th
65 Miles, 27 Locks
Canals – Trent and Mersey, Coventry, N.Oxford
Station – Stone

From Stone we will continue on the Trent and Mersey canal passing Great Haywood junction with its beautiful bridge. The canal takes us past Shugborough Hall and through Rugely to Fradley, an iconic canal junction. Here we will turn onto the Coventry canal, cruising towards Atherstone and the locks before reaching Hawkesbury Junction known to canal users as Sutton Stop. Where we turn onto the North Oxford canal, the stop lock here will be the last of this cruise which ends in Rugby.

Cruise 4
Rugby – Fenny Stratford
May 6th – 13th
52 Miles, 24 Locks
Canals – N.Oxford, Grand Union
Station – Rugby

Leaving Rugby we will ascend the lovely locks at Hillmorton, and continue to Braunston turn, where we join the Grand Union canal. Braunston is a true canal place, there should be time to explore before we climb the locks and pass through the tunnel. We will pass Norton junction and descend the locks at Buckby- the original home of the Buckby cans. The Grand Union now takes us to Blisworth tunnel and Stoke Bruerne, where there will be an opportunity to explore. We then cruise around the outskirts of Milton Keynes, always fascinating. The peace pagoda is a wonderful spot to visit if time allows. The cruise will end in Fenny Stratford.

Cruise 5
Fenny Stratford – Uxbridge
May 15th – 22nd
44 Miles, 69 Locks
Canal – Grand Union
Station – Fenny Stratford

We will cruise the Grand Union canal passing through Leighton Buzzard and the beautiful countryside of the Tring summit, before beginning the descent to the outskirts of London. We will cruise through, Berkhamsted, Hemel Hempstead, Rickmansworth, the lovely Cassiobury Park and Rickmansworth before reaching Uxbridge where this cruise will end.

Cruise 6
Paddington – Fenny Stratford
June 1st- 8th
59 Miles, 69 Locks
Canal – Grand Union
Station – Paddington

Beginning in the centre of London near Paddington Station we will cruise the Paddington arm before re-joining the Grand Union main line and retracing our route to Fenny Stratford.

Cruise 7
Fenny Stratford – Warwick
June 8th – 15th
56 Miles, 46 Locks
Canal – Grand Union
Station – Fenny Stratford

A reverse of cruise 4 as far as Braunston Turn, this time we will then cruise to Wigram’s Turn and through Long Itchington and Leamington Spa to the Saltisford arm in historic Warwick where this cruise will end.

Cruise 8
Warwick – Compton
June 17th – 24th
55 Miles, 97 Locks
Canals – Grand Union, BCN, Staffs and Worcester
Station – Warwick

Leaving Warwick this cruise begins by climbing the mighty Hatton flight of 21 locks. We then cruise into the centre of Birmingham, a vibrant city that is reputed to have more canals that Venice. The route that we will take to leave Birmingham on this occasion is through Netherton Tunnel and Merryhill, descending the Delph locks to join the Stourbridge canal. At the junction we will turn onto the Staffs and Worcester canal and cruise to Compton where this cruise ends.

Cruise 9
Compton- Red Bull
June 24th- July 1st
73 Miles, 64 Locks
Canals – Staffs and Worcester, Shropshire Union, Trent & Mersey
Station – Wolverhampton

This cruise takes in part of the 4 counties ring, at Autherley Junction we turn onto the Shropshire Union canal, with dramatic cuttings and majestic embankments, a wonderful example of a cut and fill canal. Passing through Brewood, Gnossall, Market Drayton and Nantwich before turning at Barbridge onto the Middlewich Branch. At Middlewich we will turn onto the Trent and Mersey, cruising towards Stoke on Trent via the Cheshire locks, the cruise ends near Kidsgrove at Red Bull.

Cruise 10
Red Bull – Stoke
July 1st – 8th
49 Miles, 37 Locks
Canals- Trent Mersey, Caldon
Station – Kidsgrove,

An opportunity to enjoy the beautiful Caldon canal, we will first cruise through Harecastle tunnel, justifiably one of the wonders of the waterways. At Etruria we will join the Caldon canal and cruise its entirety, although we are unable to navigate Froghall tunnel. The return journey to Stoke will see us mooring in different places overnight.

Cruise 11
Stoke – Nantwich
July 14th – 21st
81 Miles, 60 Locks
Canals – Trent & Mersey, Staffs & Worcs, Shropshire Union
Station – Stoke-on-Trent

The other part of the 4 counties ring, from Stoke through Stone to Great Haywood where we turn onto the beautiful Staffs and Worcester canal, always one of our favourites. We will cruise through Penkridge and Gailey towards Autherley Junction, where we re-join the Shroppie and cruise to Nantwich where this cruise will end.

Cruise 12
Nantwich – Llangollen
July 27th – August 3rd
54 Miles, 31 Locks
Canals – Shropshire Union, Llangollen, Montgomery
Station – Nantwich

One of our favourite cruises, at Hurleston Junction we turn and join the Llangollen canal, passing through Wrenbury, towards the lovely staircase of locks at Grindley Brook. The canal skirts Whitchurch, however it is possible to visit if time allows. Ellesmere is known as Shropshire’s Lake District and the canal passes close by two of the beautiful meres. We will make a short visit to the Montgomery canal, turning at Queens Head. Once back on the main line we cross the aqueduct at Chirk, and then one of the wonders of the waterways the mighty Pontcysyllte aqueduct always a thrill. The final run into Llangollen is beautiful and very narrow in places.

Cruise 13
Llangollen – Chester
August 3rd – 10th
61 Miles, 32 Locks
Canals – Shropshire Union, Llangollen
Station – Ruabon

A reverse of cruise 12, although we won’t have time to visit the Montgomery canal. At Hurleston we return to the Shropshire Union and cruise towards Chester, where this cruise will end.

Cruise 14
Chester – Manchester
August 12th – 19th
66 Miles, 20 Locks
Canals – Shropshire Union, Trent & Mersey, Bridgewater
Station – Chester

Leaving Chester we return to Barbridge Junction and turn onto the Middlewich Branch, at the Junction in Middlewich we turn and cruise towards the Anderton lift, we will not be descending it on this trip but there should be time to explore. We carry on towards Preston Brook tunnel and join the Bridgewater canal, cruising through Lymm to Manchester, the cruise ends in Castlefield.

Cruise 15
Manchester – Liverpool
August 19th – 26th
56 Miles, 14 Locks
Canals – Bridgewater, Leeds & Liverpool
Station – Manchester

We are travelling between two of England’s major cities, passing through urban and rural scenery. The birthplace of modern canals, Worsley is always a fascinating place to visit. We join the Leeds and Liverpool canal at Leigh, and cruise towards Wigan passing Pennington Flash on the way. At the junction we turn left and cruise towards Liverpool, through Burscough and rural West Lancashire, passing the spot where the canal was begun. Once in Liverpool we descend Stanley locks and cruise through the docks, a fantastic experience, we cruise through the famous Albert Dock to our mooring in Salthouse dock. The fabulous city of Liverpool is all around us and there will be plenty of time to explore.

Cruise 16
Liverpool – Burnley
Sept 2nd – 9th
72 Miles, 48 Locks
Canal – Leeds & Liverpool
Station – Liverpool

From the fantastic docks of Liverpool we retrace our route to Wigan, then we will climb the mighty Wigan flight, before cruising the Leeds and Liverpool through East Lancashire to Burnley where this cruise will end.

Cruise 17
Burnley – Leeds
Sept 9th – 16th
59 Miles, 51 Locks
Canals – Leeds & Liverpool
Station – Burnley

The second half of the Leeds and Liverpool canal takes us from industrial East Lancashire through fabulous Pennine scenery towards Skipton the gateway to the Yorkshire Dales. There will be time to explore Skipton before we head towards Bingley and the fantastic feat of engineering of the 5 rise locks. Further staircases of 3 and 2 rises take us down to the city of Leeds.

Cruise 18
Leeds – Hebden Bridge
Sept 16th – 23rd
44 Miles, 42 Locks
Canals – Aire & Calder, Calder & Hebble, Rochdale
Station – Leeds

From Leeds we will join the Aire and Calder navigation to cruise towards Castleford, turning there towards Stanley Ferry, with its 2 aqueducts. At Wakefield we join the Calder and Hebble navigation, passing through Brighouse where the basin is worth exploring, before cruising through Elland to Sowerby Bridge. A rare chance to use a Calder and Hebble spike – an unusual way of operating locks. At Sowerby Bridge we join the Rochdale canal, descending the deep Tuel Lane lock to cruise to Hebden Bridge where this cruise will end.

Cruise 19
Hebden Bridge- Leeds
Sept 25th – Oct 2nd
46 Miles, 48 Locks
Canals – Rochdale, Calder & Hebble, Aire & Calder
Station – Hebden Bridge

A reverse of cruise 18

Cruise 20
Leeds – Barnoldswick
Oct 2nd – 8th – 6 nights
45 Miles, 44 Locks
Canals – Leeds & Liverpool
Station – Leeds

A reverse of cruise 17, as far as Salterforth where the cruise and our season will end.

Hotel boat periwinkle Routes 2016

Cruise 1: Barnoldswick – Manchester
April 13th – 20th
67 Miles, 43 Locks
Canals – Leeds & Liverpool, Bridgewater
Station – Skipton/Colne

The first cruise of 2016 starts at our home base of Barnoldswick, we will cruise through a mixture of peaceful countryside and the industrial towns of East Lancashire. The Wigan flight takes us down 21 broad locks towards Wigan, we then turn onto the Leigh branch and the Bridgewater canal. We will have time to visit Worsley, a beautiful spot before cruising over the Bridgewater swing aqueduct and then into the heart of Manchester where this cruise will end.

Cruise 2: Manchester – Middlewich
April 20th – 27th
76 Miles, 10 Locks
Canals – Bridgewater, Trent & Mersey, Weaver Navigation
Station – Manchester

Leaving Manchester we will retrace our route to Waters meeting and then continue along the Bridgewater canal through Lymm to Preston Brook where we will join the Trent and Mersey canal. We will descend the Anderton Lift and cruise the Weaver Navigation before returning via the Anderton Lift to the Trent and Mersey canal. The cruise will end in Middlewich.

Cruise 3: Middlewich – Cheddleton
April 29th – May 6th
49 Miles, 53 Locks
Canals -Trent & Mersey, Caldon
Station – Crewe

Leaving Middlewich we will climb the lovely Cheshire Locks before cruising through the Harecastle tunnel. At Etruria Junction we will turn onto the beautiful Caldon canal, cruising the entire canal (although we are unable to cruise through Froghall tunnel). The cruise will end in Cheddleton near the fascinating Flint Mill.

Cruise 4: Cheddleton – Stone
May 6th – 12th (6 nights)
32 Miles, 36 Locks
Canals – Caldon, Trent & Mersey.
Station – Stoke on Trent

An opportunity to cruise the Caldon canal, with time to explore. We will cruise to Leek and Froghall (although we are unable to pass through Froghall tunnel). On our return to the Trent and Mersey canal we will cruise to Stone a lovely canal town where this cruise will end.

Cruise 5: Stone – Rugby
May 18th – 25th
68 Miles, 23 Locks
Canals – Trent & Mersey, Coventry, North Oxford
Station – Stone

From Stone we will continue on the Trent and Mersey canal passing Great Haywood junction with its beautiful bridge. The canal takes us past Shugborough Hall and through Rugeley to Fradley, an iconic canal junction. Here we will turn onto the Coventry canal, cruising towards Atherstone and the locks before reaching Hawkesbury Junction known to canal users as Sutton Stop, here we turn onto the North Oxford canal, the stop lock here will be the last of this cruise which ends in Rugby.

Cruise 6: Rugby- Oxford
May 25th -1st June
62 Miles,41 Locks
Canal – Oxford
Station – Rugby

The lovely Oxford canal passes through lovely countryside as it meanders gently on its route to Oxford. Passing through the village of Cropredy and the bustling town of Banbury before reaching the city of dreaming spires.

Cruise 7: Oxford – Hungerford
June 3rd – 10th
70 Miles, 45 Locks
Canals – Thames, Kennet & Avon
Station – Oxford

Leaving Oxford we will cruise through the city on the Isis as the Thames is known here, we will then carry on along the river through Abingdon and Goring to Reading where we will turn onto the Kennet and Avon, a wonderful mix of canal and river stretches. We will cruise through Woolhampton and Newbury before reaching Hungerford where the cruise will end.

Cruise 8: Hungerford – Bristol
June 10th – 17th
69 Miles, 66 Locks
Canals – Kennet & Avon, River Avon
Station – Hungerford

Completing the Kennet and Avon navigation we will cruise towards Devizes, there we will descend the fantastic Caen Hill locks, a true canal experience. The cruise carries on through Bradford-on-Avon and Bath; there will be time to explore this beautiful city. The cruise will end in Bristol; we will moor in the floating harbour, a vibrant and fascinating place.

Cruise 9: Bath – Newbury
June 20th- 27th
63 Miles, 71 Locks
Canal – Kennet & Avon
Station – Bath

Leaving the beautiful city of Bath we will ascend the locks of the Kennet and Avon canal. Climbing all the way to the summit, before descending to Newbury where this cruise will end.

Cruise10: Newbury – Godalming
June 27th – July 4th
80 Miles, 5 8Locks
Canals – Kennet and Avon, Thames, Wey & Godalming
Station – Newbury

Completing the Kennet and Avon navigation we will join the River Thames in Reading. Cruising towards Weybridge, where we will turn onto the Wey and Godalming Navigation, one of the oldest navigable waterways in Britain. The cruise takes us through Guildford and ends in Godalming (the southernmost linked point on the system).

Cruise 11: Godalming – Uxbridge
July6th – 13th
45 Miles, 33 Locks
Canals – Wey & Godalming, Thames, Grand Union
Station – Godalming

Retracing our route to the River Thames, we then cruise to Teddington and the tidal Thames to Brentford, here we join the Grand Union and cruise to Uxbridge, where this cruise will end. (SUBJECT TO TIDAL CONDITIONS)

Cruise 12: Paddington – Ware
August 1st – 8th
62 Miles, 59 Locks
Canals – Regents, Hertford Union, Lee & Stort Navigation
Station – London (Paddington)

Leaving Paddington Basin, we will cruise through Little Venice and Regents Park to Camden, and the colourful market there. We will turn onto the short Hertford Union canal – known as Duckets Cut before joining the Lee and Stort Navigation. The route passes close to the 2014 Olympic venues. This cruise encompasses both the Lee to Hertford and the Stort to Bishops Stortford. The cruise will end in Ware.

Cruise 13: Ware – Paddington
August 8th – 15th
59 Miles, 54 Locks
Canals – Lee & Stort Navigation, Regents canal.
Station – Ware

We will leave Ware and cruise towards the Stort, visiting Bishops Stortford before retracing our route to Duckets Cut, this time however we will carry on to Limehouse Basin. A fabulous overnight mooring. We will then return to Paddington along the Regents canal.

Cruise 14: Rickmansworth – Wolverton
August 17th – 24th
43 Miles, 60 Locks Canal – Grand Union
Station – Rickmansworth

A cruise along the southern Grand Union, leaving Rickmansworth and travelling through, Hemel Hempstead and Berkhamsted to the beautiful Tring Summit. We then cruise through, Leighton Buzzard and the outskirts of Milton Keynes to Wolverton where this cruise will end.

Cruise 15: Wolverton – Warwick
August 24th – 30th (6 nights)
46 Miles, 46 Locks
Canal – Grand Union
Station – Wolverton

Leaving Wolverton we will continue our journey on the Grand Union, visiting Stoke Bruerne with time to visit the museum, before cruising through Blisworth tunnel. The route includes another special canal village at Braunston. We will cruise towards Napton from Braunston Turns, at Wigrams Turn we will cruise towards Warwick, visiting Long Itchington and passing through Leamington Spa, before reaching the Saltisford Arm where this cruise will end.

Cruise 16: Warwick – Nantwich
Sept 2nd – 9th
80 Miles, 92 Locks
Canals – Grand Union, Worcester & Birmingham, BCN,Staffs & Worcs, Shropshire Union
Station – Warwick

Leaving Warwick we will ascend the Hatton flight, 21 broad locks that raise the Grand Union by approximately 146 feet. We will cruise into Birmingham on the Grand Union, and then turn onto the Worcester & Birmingham canal. We will moor in the centre of Birmingham overnight and will also visit the Black Country Museum in Dudley. Leaving Dudley we will cruise the Wolverhampton level and then descend the Wolverhampton locks, 21 but this time narrow locks. Turning onto the Staffs and Worcs canal for a short distance before joining the Shropshire Union and cruising to Nantwich where the cruise will end.

Cruise 17: Nantwich – Llangollen
Sept 9th – 16th
46 Miles, 21 Locks
Canals – Shropshire Union, Llangollen
Station – Crewe

One of our favourite cruises, at Hurleston Junction we turn and join the Llangollen canal, passing through Wren bury, towards the lovely staircase of locks at Gridley Brook. The canal skirts Whitchurch, however it is possible to visit if time allows. Ellesmere is known as Shropshire’s Lake District and the canal passes close by two of the beautiful meres. We will cross the aqueduct at Chirk, and then one of the wonders of the waterways the mighty Pontcysyllte aqueduct always a thrill. The final run into Llangollen is beautiful and very narrow in places.

Cruise 18: Whitchurch – Manchester
Sept1 9th – 26th
66 Miles, 28 Locks
Canals – Llangollen, Shropshire Union, Trent & Mersey, Bridgewater
Station – Whitchurch

From Whitchurch we will return to Hurleston Junction and rejoin the Shropshire Union canal. At Barbridge Junction we will turn onto the Middlewich Branch, at the Junction in Middlewich we turn and cruise towards the Anderton lift, we will not be descending it on this trip but there should be time to explore. We carry on towards Preston Brook tunnel and join the Bridgewater canal, cruising through Lymm to Manchester, the cruise ends in Castlefield.

Cruise 19: Manchester – Liverpool
Sept 26th – Oct 3rd
56 Miles, 14 Locks
Canals – Bridgewater, Leeds & Liverpool
Station – Manchester

We are travelling between two of England’s major cities, passing through urban and rural scenery. The birthplace of modern canals, Worsley is always a fascinating place to visit. We join the Leeds and Liverpool canal at Leigh, and cruise towards Wigan passing Pennington Flash on the way. At the junction we turn left and cruise towards Liverpool, through Burscough and rural West Lancashire, passing the spot where the canal was begun. Once in Liverpool we descend Stanley locks and cruise through the docks, a fantastic experience, we cruise through the famous Albert Dock to our mooring in Salthouse dock. The fabulous city of Liverpool is all around us and there will be plenty of time to explore.

Cruise 20: Liverpool – Burnley
Oct 7th – 14th
72 Miles, 48 Locks
Canal – Leeds & Liverpool
Station – Liverpool

From the fantastic docks of Liverpool we retrace our route to Wigan, then we will climb the mighty Wigan flight, before cruising the Leeds and Liverpool through East Lancashire to Burnley where this cruise and our 15th season will end.