Saturday, 9 January 2010

Langley Mill, Erewash Canal

Langley Mill
Erewash Canal
9th Jan 2010

I made a pilgrimage up the Erewash Canal at Easter 2008, but low water levels halted progress at Eastwood Lock and I was unable to complete the final mile into the basin at Langley Mill. This frustration has been festering away for 18 months so I grasped an opportunity to lake a look at it on foot during a recent outing with Tilly.

Great Northern Basin viewed from the pub

We rolled into Langley Mill at 1.30pm one Sunday afternoon, absolutely famished and desperate for food. We hunted high and low for the canal and it took a search on my Blackberry GPS to tell us that access to the canal is to be found from the east, not the west. With increasing desperation I suggested a KFC but was advised by Tilly that "she doesn't do KFC's". What self respecting teeneager trurn up their nose at junk food, I ask you?

In the end I gave up on the canal and made for the Great Northern Pub, and was astonished to discover that the rear of the pub overlooks the very bit of water we had been hunting for!

Great Northern Basin, Langley Mill

It's a fairly basic pub and the sight of a Doc Martin clad landlord with a brace of swallows on his neck gave rise to a measure of caution. I shouldn't have worried - they were lovely and welcoming, providing two huge helpings of roast beef from the carvery plus, a drink each with change from £12! Not bad.

Cromford Canal tollhouse, Langley Mill

With the daylight fading we took a wander round the basin, noting the very pretty toll house which marks the start of the Cromford Canal.

Great Northern Basin itself represents the start of the now abandoned Nottingham Canal, which runs alongside the Erewash for a mile or so, before bearing east at Eastwood Lock. Why the two canals run parallel is a mystery, but one which will no doubt be answered with a bit of on line research.

Erewash Canal at sunset

With the Cromford Canal nearly finished (just the stretch between Ironville and Langley Mill remains unexplored) maybe the Nottingham Canal is the logical next step.

1 comment:

FreeSpirit said...

Last year we moored at the Great Northern Basin for 8 months. The ECP&DA (Erewash Canal Preservation & Developement Association) made us very welcome. If you do manage a return visit with your boat, be sure to purchase an end of navigation plaque obtained from Peter at the boat yard.