our home on the canals---Ali's Dream

Dear Knitters,

flowering plants are a must-have for a properly outfitted narrowboat! Greetings from Wiltshire, in the United Kingdom!
It's a lovely warm evening, a little sultry perhaps with the possibility of thunder in the offing. The air is trilling to the sounds of happy song birds and bell ringing practice from the nearby village ...and now I do hear that distant thunder. Yup, John and I are back on the canals on a narrowboat!
We've been with this boat, Ali's Dream, for over a month(!) already and have moved on each day. Travelling 8 -10 hours a day feels like a great distance, but our pace is comparatively slow.

tied up for the night We picked the boat up just outside of Chester, and headed south towards Wolverhampton. Here we connected with the new-to-us Staffordshire and Worcestershire canal (opened in the 1770s). We followed this canal all the way to Worcester. The old warehouses, lock keepers cottages and toll houses are beautiful.

Bradford on Avon - a 
  scenic mad house of gongoozlers on a holiday Monday! There is something magical in arriving by water and chugging through the heart of an ancient city. You form a side-show for all the patrons of the various canal side pubs.
Gongoozlers abound in a city or tourist area: these are passersby who enjoy watching the boat and lock activities on the canal. The nicest will stop, chat and ask questions. Others stare and say nothing. Many pics are taken!

...and this is just the boat house! From here we skirted south of Birmingham and headed towards Oxford and the Thames. The Thames was a new experience: this wide river is alternately wooded or edged by magnificent properties with enormous lawns that run down to the river. These often feature a dock and a boat house large enough to live in!

reaching the Kennet&Avon 
Visited Brunel's SS Great Britain, Brunel in Bristol.  Amazing! Next we turned right and continued our journey, now along the Kennet and Avon waterway heading to Bath (it's called a waterway rather than a canal as it mixes river and canal sections). We spent some time in the port of Bristol.

Stourport basin, entering the Severn, reaching Worcester and heading up the Birmingham and Worcester canal. It's hard to say why I love the narrowboat life so much.
Every morning, as the engine rumbles into life, I just smile. As I let go the lines and we chug away from wherever we have spent the night, I find myself in eager anticipation of the number of locks ahead, or interesting villages that we will pass through. As we travel, I spend my time looking all around. The hedges and gardens are full of spring flowers. We arrived just in time to see the last of the primroses, daffodils, a carpet of blue bells and now the lilacs and wild yellow flags (iris) are blooming, too. The fields are germinating fast now, broad beans are springing up, the asparagus is in full flood. It's been a delight to watch.

managed a few minutes of knitting between locks al fresco blocking, without pins 
but with anchor chain to prevent it from blowing away Our days generally run from early morning until dinner time. This hasn't left me much time for ambitious knitting thus far. However, I did bring with me the 27 new yarn colours of sport weight Blue Faced Leicester, and have found a few moments to experiment with this luscious yarn. It is our special yarn, ordered for the knitters attending my September Knitting on the Wild Side Camps and hopefully we will have some available to non-campers later this year.

You can find more stories and photos of my travels on-line on Instagram, Twitter, FaceBook and at my blog!

Wishing you Happy Stitches,


June Sales

Aqueduct DK Hat and Tea Cozy Remember to check the homepage at LucyNeatby.com for our weekly half-priced pattern.
In conjunction with this Newsletter, my Aqueduct Hat and Tea Cozy pattern is half-price!

The Pontcysyllte Aqueduct in Wales is one of the highlights of the UK canal system. My double-knit hat and tea cozy design pays homage to this World Heritage Site, depicting narrowboats transiting the aqueduct. Options include a hat and tea cozy, and a fold up brim for extra warmth.
The Aqueduct Hat and Tea Cozy pattern is half-price ($4.50CAD) until June 14!

Our Lucky Dip pattern collections are almost gone!

Lucky Dip Pattern Collection

Back in the days of paper-only patterns, we were fortunate to sell wonderful designs by Ilga Leja and Catherine Vardy in addition to Lucy patterns. Our new website, the transition to digital photos, and various other technicalities now prevent us from marketing these patterns.
This is your last chance to snap up some of these wonderful, but now-neglected, patterns (including some of my own old style patterns). Rather than putting them into a landfill, we have been offering them as a collection! For $10 Cdn (plus shipping and applicable taxes), you will receive a surprise package of 10 diverse patterns.
The range of designs is very wide! There are mittens (fulled and otherwise), tams, booties, shawls, scarves, socks, hats and sweaters--to name but a few. I think you will be pleasantly surprised.
You'll find this special pattern collection, and many more sale items, in the Clearance section of my website.

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