The Redoubtable at Trafalgar

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The Redoubtable at Trafalgar

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Talk of Barton Broad brings me to matters of Nelson, as it’s known that he stayed in the area in his youth, and would have sailed there. Legend even has it that he lost a chain and locket in the Broad’s depths.

And thinking of Nelson reminded me I’d taken this photo of a painting produced in 1805 by Louis Phillipe Crépin depicting the brave French ship Redoubtable in action at the Battle of Trafalgar. It hangs in the Paris Musée de la Marine.

One account of the role of the Redoubtable can found at the Wikipedia , but it’s interesting also to see Captain Lucas’s account here.

I think Turner painted the same scene several times, but I doubt he ever depicted the Victory’s Ensign hanging symbolically in the water from a broken flagpole.

An elderly retired Admiral comments: ‘Those bally Frenchmen never miss a trick when they have an opportunity to have a go at us Brits! Tried to keep us out of the Common Market several times. Of course I don’t mind going there on holiday and I’ll drink their wine, but there is a limit and these Froggies haven’t a clue where it might be… Pshaw!”

The Redoubtable at Trafalgar

Click on the photograph for a larger image

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Narrowboat and canal videos from fender maker Trafalgar

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Narrowboat owner Barry McGuigan talks about his boats Narrowboat trip from Whaley to Buggsworth Basin

The British canal system is an astonishing web of narrow man-made waterways carrying long low-powered narrowboats that chug along at walking speed. The contrast with the pace of modern life could not be more complete, and so hiring a narrowboat makes for a great, peaceful day out or holiday.

So I thought I should link to these videos put up by Trafalgar Marine Services showing something of the canal around their base in Derbyshire. In the first, Brian McGuigan talks about his 70-year old motor narrow boat and butty, and the second provides a slightly scary time-lapse video of a run from Whaley Bridge to Buggsworth Basin. These boats don’t go this fast, let me tell you!

By the way, we last came across Trafalgar when the company’s Michael Dawson sent us an illustrated explanation of how to make a moustache or u-bow fender.

By the way, I’ve discovered this site selling old-style narrowboat and barge plans. There’s even a set for a Humber Keel! Now that might be a present idea for next Christmas!

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