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On to the river Soar

Although we had considered exploring the Erewash canal and toyed with the idea of going on the Trent into Nottingham, the option that appealed to us most was to simply head for the river Soar. We left our departure until after nine when we knew that there would be a lock keeper on duty. The locks are electrically operated but we wanted to make the job even easier and that’s exactly how it worked out for us.

Sawley electric locks.

Trent Lock at the bottom of the Erewash canal.

Once free of the lock, it didn’t take too long to reach the turn on to the Soar and once we had made the turn, the differences between the rivers became immediately apparent. The Soar is narrower and twistier than the Trent and of course we were now heading upstream instead of downstream. The first mile was painfully slow due to the string of moored boats, many of them widebeam. The only lock that we had to work was at Ratcliffe and there was a narrowboat about to leave just as we arrived. The skyline is dominated by the eight giant cooling towers of Racliffe power station and it took a long time for us to lose sight of it.

Ratcliffe Power Station.

Our destination had been Kegworth and we were pleased to see that there was only one boat tied on the moorings next to the flood lock.

Once showered, we walked into the village and headed for the church in search for a memorial to the people who lost their lives when a plane crashed on to the M1 motorway nearby. The memorial is actually in a cemetery on the other side of the village but we were pointed in the right direction by a lady in the church. It’s a nice memorial but it looks a bit unloved with no flowers,  just a poppy wreath, presumably left since last November.

Air crash memorial.

The chances are that none of the victims are buried in the cemetery so it’s hard to imagine that relatives of the dead would visit the memorial since the plane was flying from London to Belfast; especially since it is directly below the flight path for East Midlands airport. The story of the tragic event is here, it’s hard to believe that it is almost thirty years ago since it happened.

We returned to the boat in the middle of the afternoon and had lunch and then relaxed for the rest of the day.

Quaint little cottage on the edge of Kegworth.