Waiting for Lowestoft Bridge at 4am
We had to be up at 03.15 UT to get the 04.00 bridge out of Lowestoft. We had a strong tide with us and hoped that if we were very determined we may be able to make the full 35 miles to the River Deben before it changed. However, the wind was too light, and our speed through the water was rarely more than 4.5 knots, although we did a lot more over the ground with the tide. We might have made it, but chickened out when we got to Aldeburgh, and anchored just inside the River Ore. The River Deben is only 4 miles further on, but apparently can be tricky to enter once the ebb starts. Richard’s not feeling very well with a cold, and I was fairly jaded after the early start, so we’ll do it when we’re fresh tomorrow.
Traditional barge going past anchorage
Once safely anchored, we both went to sleep, only to be woken several hours later by torrential rain and a thunder storm. Our anchor held well and we were happy not to be out at sea. In fact we are both loving being back peacefully at anchor close to a traditional sailing barge, Ironsides, after so many nights in marinas.
Ironsides next to us at the anchorage
Fulton Broad Village Sign
It was still windy, so we stayed in the marina. One of our locker lid hinges had broken. We had ordered replacements on-line and they arrived yesterday. However it turned out that one of the bolts was bent when Richard took the old hinge off and of course the new hinges did not line up perfectly with the old ones so it turned into a much longer job than anticipated. We had to walk back to the chandlery at Oulton Broad for some more parts so it was lucky that we had nothing else planned.
Sunset at Lowestoft Haven Marina
The Broads at Beccles
The worst of the gale arrived overnight and continued all day. However we had a great time out with Alethea, Tony, and dog, Winnie. We caught the train to Beccles, a pretty town further up the river, and did a circular walk partly on the Angle Way again and round through parkland back to the town. It was a real pleasure to see Winnie the spaniel enjoying the freedom to race around, chase leaves and feathers, and leap into the Broads at every opportunity.
Winnie the spaniel enjoying the Broads
Lunch with Alethea and Tony
The day could have ended in disaster. We got onto the train to return – but it never started. There was some sort of signal or points failure. Earlier in the day our friend Ian Robson had rung to say that he was in the area and we were supposed to be meeting up with him later. I rang to say we were delayed – and he immediately came to our rescue in his car to give us all a lift back to the marina.
Ian having tea on Harvard
We had supper in the Royal Norfolk and Suffolk Yacht Club in Lowestoft with Ian making Richard very jealous with his plans to buy a bigger Rustler. The Club was very quiet, but the food was good and we were happy with our own company. The club is preparing for something called Sea Week, one of the few times Broads One Design yachts venture out onto the sea – I hope the weather calms down a bit before the start…
Gales were forecast for today, so we stayed put and decided to go to Norwich on the train. We spent most of the time on a tour of Norwich Cathedral which is the most complete Norman cathedral in England, with an amazing vaulted ceiling, large cloister and Close full of old, picture-postcard, buildings.
We then had a quick walk around the town, taking in the castle, market place, and Art Nouveau shopping arcade to get a flavour of the place before the holiday crowds and traffic got too much for us. Once again we managed to get back to the boat just before the really heavy rain started.
Art Nouveau Shopping Arcade