Here we met a lovely lady called Freda who was very taken with our boat and the flower tubs on the roof. She lives in converted weaving sheds of an old mill ( this area is littered with old cotton mills) and she insisted on showing us round and plied us with wine! She was so interesting. Used to be an artist and an author who wrote short local history books about life in Olham at the height of cotton production in the area. Really sobering stories.
After a quick trip to London to celebrate Mike Benwell's 70th birthday and further polishing and cleaning of the boat we headed back Stalybridge in anticipation . Our good friends Helen and Les joined us on the Saturday for the weekend and we were looking forward to a lively weekend with lots of boats, a 1940s theme at the Railway station buffet bar, carnival etc. we even thought we might have a chance of winning the "best presented boat" prize. There were 4 boats in total. 2 trip boats and a old wooden boat. We did win but it was a close run thing!! At the station buffet bar we arrived in full 1940s fancy dress; only one other group dressed up. However, we really had a laugh and a thoroughly good weekend.