This video is about Our Narrowboat Quest on the Ashton Canal.
On Wednesday 17th October we cruised from Stalybridge on the Huddersfield Narrow Canal to Droylsden Marina on the Ashton Canal. After passing through Lock 1W on the Huddersfield Canal we were immediately on the Ashton Canal. Passing through Ashton under Lyne we called in Portland Marina for fuel and coal then continued for the next hour to Droylsden at Fairfield Junction. Most of the Ashton Canal is in a densely built up area of industrial units, old mills and urban landscapes.
The Ashton Canal forms part of The Cheshire Ring encompassing parts of the Trent and Mersey, the Bridgewater Canal and the Peak Forest and Macclesfield Canals. We would have preferred to have cruised down the Peak Forest and Macclesfield Canal, thereby avoiding Manchester, however due to lock closures because of the water shortages these canals were not navigable at this point in time so Manchester and the Rochdale nine it was!
We had booked the boat into Droylsden Marina for two weeks while we visited our daughter in Kent.
On Wednesday 31st October we left the marina and took in the 18 locks on our descent to Manchester. The Nicholson Waterways guide recommends that you commence these locks before 10 am, completing them the same day and only mooring in recognised sites in the area, avoiding school holidays. We were a little nervous as to what to expect, however this was not a school holiday so trouble hopefully was not on the agenda.
It was a beautiful autumn day with plenty of sunshine and this section of the canal was quite pretty in parts but on the whole unremarkable. Sadly spoilt by lots of rubbish and plastic in the locks and canal in general.