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rope taken from the bow, this time it was securely tied! Unfortunately it was now too late, he was too firmly fixed and we were beginning to throw up gravel so the rope cast off and they were abandoned. We were soon tied up at Torksey, eight hours later to be joined by the grounded boat. The following day saw us travel the next leg down to Keadby where yet another narrow boat was discovered aground. This one was well high and dry they could even leave the boat and walk to shore if they wanted. Now it was on this length

information from the lock keeper was found wanting. It had been policy always to talk to the lock keeper one is travelling too and not take the word of the one you are leaving. Keadby lock stressed that 3.00pm was the time we HAD to be there. Now a news paper halt was planned at the floating pontoons in Gainsborough but again he stressed the 03.00 time was imperative. So keeping our Gainsborough break to an absolute minimum Pertama pressed on and made excellent time. On passing under the M180 and the lock keeper was phoned, only now were we informed that the 03.00pm time was the earliest we could arrive and lock in! This left us struggling to moor onto the small dock where the coaster is sometimes to be found. So the moral to the story, not only talk to the lock you are going too but clearly identify the timing brackets available. Never keen to linger in Keadby, Pertama pressed on towards Thorne


but by now the electric control system was beginning to play up. So common sense and weariness prevailed and we stopped for the night. The next day saw us sliding into

one of the BW moorings in Thorne where we stayed for a few days. The time was spent examining the electrics and doubling the size of the fridge cables. The fridge had begun to give the occasional flash indicating it was seeing only 10.5 volts. Now the batteries were never below 11.9v so voltage drop over cable length had to be the answer. Fifty Amp cable was bought from Thorne Boat Services, fed through the looms and connected to the +ve terminal on the fridge. The old +ve and -ve cables were united as a new combined -ve return. Problem solved no more flashing light on the fridge. If only all the problems were to be so easy. Our next journey was a days run

to Long Sandle Lock which has a delightful mooring site and then on the morrow, to Strawberry Island Boat Club in Doncaster. We have stayed at this site very many time and there is always a very warm welcome from all the members. In fact Pertama’s crew had become good friends with a couple of boaters moored here who we had first met at Lechlade on the Thames some 12 years ago. Two years previous we had been

to Strawberry Island for Jeffs 80th birthday party, what a glowing advertisement for continued boating !

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