Now that the main summer boating season is over our mooring customer and waterway campaigner John Revell discusses boating on one of the lesser used areas of the Midlle Level navigation.
I particularly enjoy boating on the Middle Level beyond Lodes End Lock. This is very different from the “Link Route” both in feel and in the number of boats that use it. Probably the least visited stretch is between Exhibition Bridge and Yaxley mainly because Exhibition Bridge itself is very low.
The river level is kept lower during winter months and there is then sufficient clearance for me to get under Exhibition bridge in my Fox built narrowboat and easily reach the mainline railway bridge just before Yaxley. In recent times the Middle Level Commissioners have created a rural mooring at the head of navigation half a mile further on and close to 2 pubs and a shop. Middle Level Commissioners have dredged part of this river and carried out weed clearance, so I am planning to take my boat there later this year.
During September Mike Daines, Nik Daines and myself had a very enjoyable canoe trip to Yaxley, this time from Bevill’s Leam pumping station at Pondersbridge. This took a little under 2 hours each way. Mike and John are both active members of the Middle Level Watermans Club
We shall look forward to hearing about John’s trip. Do you have a story to tell about boating on the Middle Level Navigation? Please feel free to submit it for possible publication.
Photo credits. Mike Daines.