so good, it went in the book - March 3, 2020Going back to the summer of 1965, when I was just nine years old, it was time for our second waterways holiday on a boat hired from T. W. Allen and sons of Molesey. This time it had been decided, in discussions that I was not privy to, that my maternal grandmother would come with us. A bigger boat was needed so we plumped for a wooden one that T. W. Allen had christened River Rose.
crump - a cautionary tale - December 1, 2019Mum and Dad, like a lot of enthusiasts in the early seventies, bought themselves a nice new Springer narrowboat. This one was one of the DIY fit, shells and had arrived the previous year. Dad fitted it out as best he could for our first holiday aboard it the previous year and, by the second season we had the luxury of cork based anti condensation paint (which didn’t work), a gas ring, and a small 12 volt fluorescent light.
spook of strensham lock - September 1, 2019“Like father, like son.” is one of those phrases that gets pushed around when you are young. I’d guess that my love of canals does, at least in part, come from my dad Charlie Nye who had a few adventures on the water long before I was born. He was the one that suggested a waterways holiday in 1964, telling my mum that we’d either love it or hate it. We all loved it and both my brother and I were infected with the strange virus that gives you a lifelong interest in rivers and canals.
falling in love again - June 1, 2019It's been a bit over fifty years since I first stood in the derelict house alongside Shipton Weir lock on the Oxford Canal. The love of all things waterways related started there, and I feel I did the long gone building some justice by letting it live again in my fictional writing. To fall for one moribund structure is probably not that bad a thing for a ten year old but I now find, at the age of sixty-two, that something pretty similar has happened.
summer of love - March 1, 2019In mid July 1967, the Nye family set off on their summer holidays which, since 1964 had been a trip up the Thames to Lechlade by boat, and then a return trip. The first two of these holidays were in a hired boat from T.W. Allen and Sons of Molesey. In the spring of 1966 a small windfall allowed us to get a 16 foot “Rutland” cabin cruiser which we again took up the Thames and back. I remember hearing the winning goal of the World Cup on a Ferguson transistor radio outside of Sunbury lock.