Tuesday, 29 October 2013

The end of an era

Today, standing on the stern of my boat, I greeted Ron and Mary Heritage as they passed by on nb HERON. A quick chat established that they were on their way to Stowe Hill to put their boat on brokerage with Dominic Miles. Sadly at 82 the boating life has become to strenuous for Ron after his mini stroke last year.

You may remember Ron and Mary retraced the journey of Tom and Angela Rolt, which was the focus of Rolt’s book Narrowboat, just a few years ago.

I picked up a windlass and set off for the Braunston bottom lock and helped them up to the summit. We didn’t get there until four o’clock and rather than pootle through the tunnel and exit in the dark they moored up above the top lock. Mary made us all a cuppa.

I really like Ron and Mary. Ron can talk for England when it comes to boats.  They have always been staunch supporters of the IWA and long term members of the Thrupp Canal Cruising Club. Sad to see them leaving the cut, but I suspect they will still be around organising this or that for some time to come.


Daykin said...

I traveled from Banbury back to Lower Heyford after Banbury Canal day this year with Ron and Mary. It was my first real trip on a Narrowboat and on the tiller. Age and health issues can creep up on us all at some point so make the best of it whilst you can as R & M did.

Oakie said...

What a great couple they are. You are right about Ron. I got him on to engineering a while ago and he never stopped - all interesting stuff too. They have done sterling work for the IWA, Oxford Open Doors and Banbury, just to my knowledge and it will be sad when they stop boating, but we all grind to a halt eventually.