Days out with the Grandchildren do not have to be very expensive and we are very fortunate to have the canals near us. Therefore we choose to visit the canal junction at Kingswood which is the home of the Kingswood Arm a short section that links the Grand Union with the Stratford canal. My grandchildren had just discovered the Sylvanian family toy canal boat that belonged to my daughters when they were children. Both of grandchildren wanted to see canal boats for real.
When we arrived at Lapworth, there was a boat going through the locks. This generated a series of why questions from both of them and I had a lot of explaining of how a lock works. The family on board the boat going through the Kingswood junction allowed my granddaughters to help with the opening of the locks. We strolled along the tow path and remarked how funny the roof of the lockmaster’s cottage was. It had a round roof like a barrel. Then we walked along the arm that joined both the Stratford and Grand Union canals. There was more excitement as several trains passed over the railway bridge that crosses the canal arm. We reached the Grand Union canal junction and much to the excitement of my granddaughters discovered a hand operated history box.
In these days of the Coronavirus, we had our hand sanitiser ready plus a disinfectant wipe ready to hold the handle. We turned the handle quickly and like magic to the children, a voice appeared. The hand operated verbal histories box tells the story of Rosie. She and her husband lived and worked on the canals. They ferried supplies along the canal to the Cadbury’s factory in Birmingham. The grandchildren were fascinated with the way it worked and the story of Rosie. They had been to Cadbury’s world so this interested them. So much so we heard the story five times! The other fun was seeing what people were doing on the boats and the girls had chats with several boat people along the way.
We even found a boat with the name Small World and then started singing the refrain “It’s a small world”. The earworm of a tune was with us not only on our way back to the car but for the rest of the day. There is so much to do and see around the canals. Life is good by water and as the sign says slow down and enjoy it. The three ducks certainly did.