Station Road BridgeBarker's Lock
"Lock to Lock"
Ilkeston - Station Road to Barker's
w/e 09 August 2009
All this week's pictures were taken with a Kodak DX6490

Continuing our walk between the "Locks on the Erewash Canal" we resume midway along the longest section at Station Road and in this part will proceed as far as Barker's Lock near the bottom of Awsworth Road.

Mill Street

Steps to Station RoadMill Street from Station Road bridgeIn the first part of this section we followed the route along the western side of the canal but must now return to the eastern side and descend to the towpath from Station Road via a steep flight of steps (left). Passing under the Station Road bridge Mill Street is visible on the opposite side (right & above). I am not aware of any such incidents but unsuspecting drivers could well end up with a damp end to their journey!

Behind the properties on Mill Street is Johnny's. Like The Ashes (Gordon Street Playing Fields) seen earlier in the walk Johnny's also has an official name, the Wash Meadow Play Area, designated by the local Council but this is very rarely used by Ilkeston folk who prefer the names that have been in common use for generations.

A footbridge crosses the canal leading to Johnny's from the towpath. It also acted as a shortcut for people walking from the bottom end of town to the Waterside Retail Park off Station Road which is beyond the metal fence seen here on the right. A gate in the fence was recently locked by the owners, preventing access to the Retail Park the reason given being that it was a deterrent to shoplifters who were plaguing the site. However as we walked past the locked gate we noticed that a panel in the fence nearby had been removed. By whom it is unknown but it is highly unlikely to be a permanent arrangement.
Millership Way Bridge

Under Millership WayCanal TowpathThe footbridge is a good vantage point to see the newly constructed bridge carrying Millership Way that was opened in 2008 by Government Minister Geoff Hoon and Derbyshire County Council member Brian Lucas. Returning to the towpath we pass under the new bridge (left) and continue (right) towards Awsworth Road and Barker's Lock.

For more views in this area from Millership Way see Parts 3 & 4 of the First Impressions series.
From this point to Awsworth Road we are following the same route as that featured in the Town Walk but in the opposite direction. See Parts 29 and 30 of the walk with photos from 2004/5 to compare.
Rural Area

For the next couple of hundred yards or so the canal loses its urban feel and takes on a more rural countenance with unmade ground on the left and a high hedge and tree shrouded view on the right. In the distance however a large industrial building and some residential properties soon come into view.

Four semidetached houses and a bungalow comprise those residential properties at the side of the canal and are probably in one of the remotest and most secluded spots within the town boundary. Old maps label these properties as Canal Side but they now go by the name of Fairview and if you are after a bit of seclusion, one of them is currently for sale.
Potholed Path

For the rest of the route to Awsworth Road, the towpath widens sufficiently to allow the passage of vehicles but pedestrians and car drivers too for that matter have to proceed with care as the path is full of potholes. The right hand side is now flanked by the rear of many small industrial units but the trees on the opposite side shielding the Springfield Gardens and Redland Close housing offer a much more pleasing aspect.
Bridge Inn

Awsworth Road BridgeMost of the area on the right between the canal and the River Erewash is filled with light industrial concerns but there is a terrace of residential properties near Awsworth Road and again for those seeking a house backing on to the canal there are several "For Sale" boards here. The recession probably accounts for the slow movement of sales in the housing market and could also be a factor in the state of the Bridge Inn, the rear of which can be seen here. The pub is currently boarded up and has been closed for quite a while but our objective in this part is straight on as the gates of the lock can be seen under the Awsworth Road bridge.

 Lock to Lock Index
Part 6 to Stenson's Lock

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