On to Worcester
At seven thirty and with no movement from the other boats on the floating pontoon, we slipped quietly into the middle of the channel and began our journey to Worcester. The flow was light so despite the fact that we were heading upstream, we made excellent progress. There isn’t a lot to see on this section of the river, the only lock is on the outskirts of Worcester so there is little else to do except to let the brain go into auto pilot and navigate the tree lined wide waterway. Three hours after we had set off, Diglis locks came into view. The gates opened, the red light changed to green and we moved straight in. The lock keeper waited until we had secured our ropes before he operated the hydraulic mechanism that fills the lock. A few minutes later we left by the top gates and moved on to the service pontoon where we filled the water tank. It’s a short hop from there to the CRT visitor moorings, another floating pontoon. We found a space quite easily and tied up for the next couple of days. There are no services on the pontoon but it’s a short walk to Diglis basin where we were able to dispose of rubbish and empty cassettes. Sadly, there is a 48 hour restriction here otherwise we would probably have stayed longer.
After we sorted all of the essential stuff out, we went exploring. It was already very hot at midday when we walked along the riverside to find the Cathedral and we were very glad to go inside where it was cool. In general, Cathedrals are impressive both inside and out – Worcester didn’t disappoint, it really is magnificent.
When we emerged into the sunlight, the temperature had continued to rise and it was beginning to get a bit uncomfortable outside. We wandered around the main shopping area which boasts an excellent selection of shops and then went for a coffee. The temperature locally (this was June 26th) was expected to reach 29 or 30 degrees but with the concrete and stone of the town buildings absorbing and then radiating heat, it felt warmer in the streets not helped by the lack of any sort of breeze.
We knew that Caxton was on a pontoon that is completely exposed with no shade on any side so we decided to escape for the afternoon by going to the cinema! The Vue cinema is in the town centre so we bought our tickets and a couple of ice creams and watched Deadpool 2. It was a strange experience because we were the only two people in the room so we were able to laugh and pass comment without fear of disturbing other viewers.
It was almost five o’clock when we left the cinema and although it was still very warm outside, the temperature was just starting to drop a little. Caxton would still be boiling so we took the opportunity to eat out in Cathedral square, carefully selecting a restaurant with air conditioning!
The following day, although just as warm, was different in that there was a breeze blowing and that made it possible to walk around the city centre without the discomfort of the previous day.
After walking along the riverside to the racecourse, we went into town again and did a bit of shopping. We found the local Asda which is very close to the canal so we took the towpath route back to Diglis basin and then down to our river mooring.
With our time on the 48 hour mooring almost up, the following morning we moved the short distance to the council moorings near the racecourse. There’s a £4 charge but we didn’t mind that as we wanted the extra day and those moorings are closer to Foregate Street railway station. With the boat tied up and the mooring fee paid (just buy a ticket from the machine in the nearby car park) we walked to the station and bought two tickets to …………………………….