I left us Wednesday evening with the rain falling and the light failing. A dog walker had told us that through the next bridge was a pub with moorings - beggars can't be choosers we thinks, that will do nicely, so Jill and I hurried on ahead to have a look.
Sure enough their was the new pub and the brand new marina! No mooring bollards or rings outside the pub and the entrance to the new and almost empty marina is a hydraulically operated lift bridge, a locked hydraulically operated lift bridge no less. Jill hares off into the pub to find out how we might access 'their' marina and I find the single boater in residence. The single boater in residence turns out to be the harbour master, John. While I was having the 'can we come in for the night please' and he was telling me that 'they didn't do single night stays', Jill returns and joins me in trying to persuade said harbourmaster to let us in.
'There will be a charge.
Of course, we expect that.
It's £15 a night.
How about twenty quid for the both boats?
Not really, I could do £25 for both boats but you have to help me to lift the bridge.'
We helped wind up the bridge.
Apparently the brand new marina has been developed by a property developer. Charges for mooring are it seems based on market reseach in the Channel Islands and bare little relationship to what people are prepared to pay 'up north' on the inland waterways. £2500 per annum plus VAT - hence an empty marina.
Anyway we were in and secure for the night and the hostelry next door was about to provide us with some much needed sustainance...