As I stated on the last blog, on return from Audlem, we were greeted by a scaffold wagon delivering 100 short used scaffold boards for Darleys decking. Over the next couple of nights after work and the following weekend these were all cut and laid, with the assistance of Chris Shenton, so now Darley has a new mooring onto which it is safe to walk and even jump off the bows without the fear of going through.
The next thing we did was to dredge the mooring as in the space of a couple of months while we had been out on Darley, it had filled up with mud etc. The boat on the mooring in front had gone out for the day, so with Dawn on the bank and me on Darley we moved her half way down the mooring and secured her as close as we could then by use of the wash from the engine and continually going from ahead to astern, we gradually washed all the mud away until we could get her right in the side and up against the boards..
We were very luck with that tyre shown in the photo. It was underneath the boards when we laid them but the wash from the prop must have dislodged it and it came out from under the boards and went straight under the counter before I had chance to knock it out of gear but luckily, the blade of the prop hit it and sent it back out and we were able to fish it out. It’s a little ironic in doing this as when Darley was owned by Alfred Matty & Sons, in the 1970-80s, they cut her bow off behind the mast and fitted a ‘punt’ front, installed a JCB type arm and re-named her Will Newton to use her as a dredger. It was never a great success as she was very unstable and rolled about when the arm was slewed across. Now we can get Darley right in to the side. Mind you we are off out again in a short while and I suppose it will fill up again while we are out, but hey ho, so till then
Don’t bang ‘em about.