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Annewiggy
Tamworth
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316 of 340  Mon 21st Nov 2016 1:50pm  
Member: Joined Jan 2013  Total posts:1041

The canal or wharf office is referred to many times in the newspaper archives as being in Bishop Street in the 19th century. The references after that, and not all the newspapers are on line, mention Market Street.
Canals around Coventry
Greg
Coventry
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317 of 340  Mon 21st Nov 2016 9:00pm  
Member: Joined Apr 2011  Total posts:232

On 19th Nov 2016 4:03pm, Kaga simpson said: I have been browsing the forum. There were two canal basins, I think people get them mixed up. We know the original canal wound round the Boat Inn and Eburns Bridge, Deedmore Road right by the collieries, so why did they not load the coal there on to the narrowboats rather than build the basin half a mile away?
Because I use the Slough a lot I have taken an interest in the local history of the canals and mines and it looks like the basin at the back of the Slough (now used by the Coventry Canal Society) was next to the Victoria Farm mine shaft. This basin was at the end of the canal branch which you mention. The branch joined the main canal by the Jolly Colliers bridge. I cannot remember what the original `set up` was with the other basin (accessed from Lentons Lane).
Canals around Coventry
LesMac
Coventry
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318 of 340  Tue 22nd Nov 2016 11:57am  
Member: Joined Dec 2011  Total posts:294

Hi all. Above the Slough, very close, about ten yards from the blunt end of the basin, was a vertical shaft that had been enclosed by a brick dome structure. This wouldn't be a winding shaft as it was only about 10ft in diameter. At some time the dome had been damaged and we occasionally dropped bricks and stuff down the shaft. It wasn't hugely deep, probably no more than 100ft. Close by was a group of cottages that I assume were once miners' homes. I have no idea where the winding shaft was but it must have been close by.
Canals around Coventry
Kaga simpson
Peacehaven, East Sussex
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319 of 340  Tue 22nd Nov 2016 11:57am  
Member: Joined Sep 2014  Total posts:1800

MR and Annewiggy, thank you for the replies. Maybe the house address was Bishop Street, there's no doubt it was a hive of industry back in the 19th century, but certainly had nothing to do with the basin at Wyken Colliery, that was Oxford Canal in those days. Greg, in the 19th century, the canal ran through the double bridges up the side of the clod banks, around the Boat Inn and down past the cemetery to the bridge on Woodway Lane. The canal basin you know was added at the double bridges, I know not why, when the canal ran very close to both pits. The path to Lentons Lane was less than half a mile distance. The end of the basin was over half a mile either to the Victoria or Craven pits, the run up to the basin was a single boat width so must have caused a lot of bottle-necks. Why I didn't ask these questions 70 years ago I now regret. For my old man was a boat boy and knew all the workings. But why they built the basin intrigues me?
Canals around Coventry
Kaga simpson
Peacehaven, East Sussex
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320 of 340  Mon 21st Aug 2017 7:43pm  
Member: Joined Sep 2014  Total posts:1800

Well, well, look who's turned up here! My wife bought me a jigsaw from a boot sale and the picture is my dad's old mate Joe Skinner. Not on his own boat, not even his nephew's boat but on a pleasure power boat. The last time I saw Joe was April 1948 when he delivered us 10 cwt of coal, my young brother and I wheeled it in barrows into the coal shed while Joe and my dad shovelled it out the boat into the barrows. Both of them were bitching about the power boats, Joe because they didn't slow down when they met him and dad because too much wash ripped the banks apart. Joe vowed he would never step on a powerboat. Yet here he is on a powerboat, with modern shirt and tie, 'not Joe at all'. We all know the story on Joe, but when everyone jumped on the bandwagon Joe got scared, he was made guest of honour at a dinner, but Joe had hardly ever stepped off his boat, so he came to see my dad, the only way he would attend the dinner was if my parents would attend, so it happened, but the two couples were in different worlds to the rest of the people. Dawn to dusk almost from when they could walk they would walk behind their horse guiding and working the ropes, in all weathers talking more to the horse than to people, a hard life we can hardly understand but all part of our history.
Canals around Coventry
Not Local
Bedworth
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321 of 340  Mon 21st Aug 2017 9:07pm  
Member: Joined Feb 2014  Total posts:183

Kaga, no excuses, you should have this jigsaw finished in record time! I read somewhere that the canal preservation people in the 1960's used to take Joe and Rose to canal rallies around the area. They could not take their own boat because Joe didn't have a horse so the canal enthusiasts took them about on their motor boats. I didn't know Joe to speak to but recall him being in the background at Sutton Stop when something of interest was happening. On one occasion Olive, the landlady at the Greyhound, was giving a bunch of young people on a hire boat some sound advice as to why they should not steal her 'Brew Eleven' pint glasses. The language used was very impressive and used a variety of Anglo Saxon phrases. At that time, in the early or mid - 1970's, Joe and Rose had one of the cottages at Sutton Stop and his boat 'Friendship' was moored close by. The boat was covered in tarpaulins to keep the weather out. It was reputed that Rose slept in the house but Joe could only sleep on a boat. In recent years I have seen 'Friendship' at the boat museum at Ellesmere Port.
Canals around Coventry
jvb
Kenilworth
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322 of 340  Thu 31st Aug 2017 11:13pm  
Member: Joined Nov 2011  Total posts:34

Kaga The boat in your jigsaw puzzle photo is 'Water Ouzel', which operated as a trip boat at Rugby and Braunston from about 1965 to 1990, and is now a trip boat in London. It was originally the Grand Union Canal Carrying Company's 'Sun' built as a carrying boat in the 1930's, not a modern pleasure boat. Are you sure that the person on the boat is Joe Skinner of the 'Friendship'? I understand the Skinner family were quite large, and Joe had a relative called Jack who operated other boats. There was an old boatman who steered 'Water Ouzel' for many years, but unfortunately I can't find his name at the moment. Not Local After they retired, Joe and Rose Skinner's 'Friendship' was often towed by Bert Dunkley's boat 'Prince' to canal rallies in the 1960's and a number of photos exist of these events.
Canals around Coventry
Kaga simpson
Peacehaven, East Sussex
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323 of 340  Fri 1st Sep 2017 5:31pm  
Member: Joined Sep 2014  Total posts:1800

jvb, yes I am sure. For it's a posed picture of an old boatman in a modern setting. Joe is posing, not a bit relaxed, modern silk shirt and tie, he would have been laughed off the cut in the old days in that gear. Not as they were around in the old days. Yes the name of pleasure boat company and Rugby are on the side of the cabin. I feel people are painting the wrong picture of the canal life, it was hard, dirty and dangerous life, the only good thing about it was the open air. One slip and you were down under the boat in very confined spaces. Working the boats - completely different to pleasure boating. I remember my father telling me when I was very young, they were being loaded with a cargo of Golden Syrup, something happened with the crane and a net full of large tin cans fell, serious injury to a couple of boatmen, and covering the boat in syrup, took several weeks to get the boat clean. It attracted animals and insects galore.
Canals around Coventry
Not Local
Bedworth
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324 of 340  Fri 1st Sep 2017 10:03pm  
Member: Joined Feb 2014  Total posts:183

jvb - Thanks for the information about Joe's boat being towed to rallies. Jack Skinner was the next generation, he was Joe's nephew. Joe's boat 'Friendship' was built for him in 1925 at a time when motor boats were the future. By the time Joe had the conversation with Kaga's father in 1948 his opinions would have been seen as quite old fashioned by some fellow boatmen. Joe retired in 1959 and it was reputed he was the last boatman on the Oxford Canal to use a mule hauled boat. I have just been reading some accounts of Joe at the canal rallies in the 1960's. He was apparently regarded as someone special and as a result everyone wanted to buy him a pint. That would be a good incentive to put on a fancy shirt and tie and have a good time. I agree with Kaga that it is indeed Joe on the jigsaw picture. I never had a chance to speak to Joe but then we had nothing in common because he was a working boatman and I was just a gongoozler.
Canals around Coventry
Kaga simpson
Peacehaven, East Sussex
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325 of 340  Sat 2nd Sep 2017 4:29pm  
Member: Joined Sep 2014  Total posts:1800

Not Local, No one had anything in common with him except perhaps my dad, they were a dying race that had seen a very different world, they lived, worked and slept all in the same space, and the space was so cramped it seems unbelievable they could raise families, at the same time they walked from dawn to dusk most days, and to walk through tunnels laying on your backside on a plank of wood?
Canals around Coventry
Kaga simpson
Peacehaven, East Sussex
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326 of 340  Mon 4th Sep 2017 10:09am  
Member: Joined Sep 2014  Total posts:1800

Joe Skinner actually had the last laugh as you might say. We all tend to see Coventry as a city that grew up with the car industry because of our age, but that is not true. To me Coventry's real age was when they found the coal throughout the north of the city, this brought wealth and power right into the centre of the city. In turn the power gave the city to build and harness the skills of its people. But in 1926/7 the strikes of the north infected Coventry and a lot of smaller collieries closed, this in turn affected the transport by the coal boats. The younger ones turned to power boats, but Joe didn't have the money, and was stubborn anyway, he clung to the horse power for his boat. This irritated the younger boat people who were always in a bigger hurry than Joe and gave him a lot of stick. But the trade died, and Joe carried on in his own way as usual. But Joe had his problems - when the power boats got popular they no longer needed stables and feed and they closed but Joe had one old friend - my dad. We had feed and a stable he could rely on for both when in that area. The Elephant and Castle pub, Tusses Bridge, could accommodate about 15 horses in its stables behind the pub, but they lay empty from the mid-thirties until the Civil Defence used them in the war.
Canals around Coventry
Roger Turner
Torksey
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327 of 340  Wed 20th Sep 2017 5:54pm  
Member: Joined Aug 2014  Total posts:469

I looked in the search section and I can`t believe in this popular thread what I am going to post hasn`t been here before. I was watching "Salvage Hunters" on Quest channel last night and Drew Pritchard, a collector from North Wales, visited a site by the Coventry Canal, said to be Bedworth. He met a chap called "Pete" at a place called Charity Dock. Absolutely fascinating place, old motor bikes, cars, and an early Vespa (?) scooter conversion into a truck
Canals around Coventry
Midland Red
Cherwell
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328 of 340  Wed 20th Sep 2017 7:27pm  
Moderator: Joined Jan 2010  Total posts:4541

Charity Dock on Towpathtalk Thumbs up
Canals around Coventry
Old Lincolnian
Coventry
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329 of 340  Thu 21st Sep 2017 10:38am  
Member: Joined Sep 2012  Total posts:457

I've been past Charity Dock many times and it is well worth a look. The best view (if you haven't got a boat) is from the opposite side of the canal. Go to Hawkesbury junction and then continue north, you can't miss it. As it's such a well known place I'd assumed it had been mentioned on here before (although its not in Coventry) - what's the old saying about never assuming?
Canals around Coventry
johnwright
combe martim
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330 of 340  Fri 22nd Sep 2017 9:15am  
Member: Joined Jun 2014  Total posts:124

Good morning Kaga. Can you help me with your extensive knowledge of the canals around Coventry and district. I remember that, as kids, we had walked along the canal for miles and came to an aqueduct, the problem is I just cannot remember where this aqueduct was/is. I think it may have been around Brinklow area, though not too sure. Wherever it was it must have been within walking distance of Coventry, mind you, when I look at Google maps now, and see how far we used to walk from Foleshill as kids I can hardly believe it. Many thanks Kaga. Hope you and Janet are in good health.

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