Soon we’ll begin to complete our walking along the canal to Leeds, but not yet. The walk today was another getting ready for all that walk. Like the one we did up by Burscough a couple of weeks ago. Another part of our long hello to somewhere not seen since our many canal walks of three years ago.

This afternoon we returned to the beginning of the canal, or one version of the beginning, at Vauxhall.

Though really the canal was begun at Leeds and got to Liverpool gradually.

And even when it arrived here early in the 19th century it didn’t come down these locks into the docks where we’re starting today. This bit wasn’t added until 1848.

Until then the canal ended along past the Tate & Lyle refinery, which isn’t there any more, with quays at Leeds Street, which aren’t there any more either.

Now the canal stops just along there at the Eldonian Village.

It’s a long way from here to Leeds, but we’ve walked just about a hundred miles of it.

And soon we’ll walk the rest, from Gargrave where we finished in 2017, into Leeds where the canal also starts and ends.

Today though we’re walking slowly to Bootle. Very slowly, because we’re looking at wildflowers, many of them turning to seed pods now as autumn arrives.

Bladder Senna
It’s part of the pea family
See?
Yarrow
Up close
Cat’s-ear

And when we walk the rest of our way to Leeds we’ll take our time over it too, like this. There’s no rush, there hardly ever is. We mostly impose rushing on ourselves I think.

Time passes
We’re in Kirkdale now
Yes, it’s a duck on its own float
No doubt an Everton fan could date this historic graffiti?
Another ancient road up to the canal

We’re in Bootle now. Taking our time, noticing the autumn, stopping for occasional sits.

And now simply stopping

We’d intended to walk a little beyond this changeline bridge where the tow-path changes sides. But the bridge is being repaired, so we stopped for today, just outside Liverpool’s only community pub. Run by Safe Regeneration and the people of round here.

The Lock & Quay

Then we walked back to Vauxhall. Still looking for wildflowers and seeds. You notice different things walking in the opposite direction don’t you?

Lesser Burdock
Fumitory
Agrimony

Arriving back at Vauxhall to enjoy the splendid wall paintings.

Next time we’re on the canal, which won’t be long now, we’ll be slow-walking the rest of our way to Leeds.

Along here

All of our Leeds Liverpool Canal walks, apart from the ones we haven’t done yet, are now gathered together here.

Published by Ronnie Hughes

Writing about life, Liverpool and anything else that interests me. As well as working with others to make the world a fairer and kinder place: http://asenseofplace.com.

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