All fired up, opened out and re-propped!

Arriving back on board Saturday afternoon, I’d been expecting to come across a very messy boat.

I’m pleased to report I was very pleasantly surprised.

Most of the work had been done to get our new multi-fuel stove fitted, and by the evening the partition wall had been sawn away too!

We chose Areandare in early 2013 predominantly for her fantastic storage space in the engine room and boatman’s cabin in readiness for The Home Brew Boat. The drawback was that the lounge/dining area and kitchen felt very ‘closed off’ compared to other narrowboats we’ve been in, and our previous boat Northern Pride.

Barry had postulated some time ago removing part of the dividing wall, and having the fire fitted at Oxley Marine seemed like a great opportunity to do this – and of course it would mean the heat from the fire spreading through the boat better


Cupboards removed, fire’s in, dividing wall cut out – wow! Feels so much more spacious 🙂

Barry had quite a pleasant few days ‘boat alone’ while I was with my eldest daughter and grandsons, and made some new buddies. Being moored adjacent to a canal side bar probably helped considerably! He enjoyed a few games of pool with the locals, and I’m sure there was lots of banter about all manner of topics.

I do sometimes wonder why people make out that women chat a lot, in my experience, especially on the waterways, men can talk for hours about goodness knows what!


We had a bit of a ‘ding’ on our propellor after the Parkhead festival which badly bent it. Sunday saw Areandare’s back end being hoisted out of the water to have a brand new prop fitted. Fingers crossed the insurance will cover that …


Barry moves his beloved a few metres up the cut for the JCB


How many men does it take to change a prop?


There were actually five of them, including Barry – a great job once the JCB was weighted down sufficiently to pull Areandare’s back end up and remove a rather bent prop

We left Oxley yesterday, our bank balance considerably reduced though not by as much as we’d feared. A fabulous bunch of blokes, very friendly and helpful, and they fitted us in despite being really busy. We’re extremely grateful, now we won’t freeze when the weather turns cold, which we’re told is going to happen very soon.

Just in time for the cold snap ...

Just in time for the cold snap …

This evening we’re moored at the top of the Wolverhampton 21, and the fire is lit. It’s amazing to feel the cosiness of sitting in the boat with the warm glow of coal not far away.


8 thoughts on “All fired up, opened out and re-propped!

  1. Yes, That’s made a big difference to the boat, hasn’t it? And I’m sure you’ll enjoy the stove – I always thought mine was one of the best things about Starcross. Have a good winter!

  2. Brilliant chaps at Oxley. They pulled our back out like that when we broke the cup that the rudder sits on when going down Wolverhampton. We subsequently had some bigger work done by them and although it cost real money it was good value. We too (the crew of Mintball) would recommend them.

  3. Nothing to beat that cosy feeling of being warm and snug when outside is cold and bleak! Mind you, a long cold stretch ahead!

    • Kia ora Phil! Yes we’re loving it, I miss our wood burner from NZ so it brings back awesome memories too! So warm and cosy – I’m not a fan of British winters so it’s certainly going to help to soften the dark, damp and cold days ahead! Enjoy the Gisborne sunshine … 🙂

  4. The guys at Oxley are great – I cant praise them highly enough.
    And as to “what to guys talk about” – Beer, boats and babes mostly….

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