Our arrival in Shardlow was a little disorientating, it seemed like it should be mid afternoon but it was only just after 10 am due to the fact that we had started our journey just after six. Rather than just potter around the village, we decided to catch the bus into Derby, which is not too far away. It was an impromptu decision so we had no plans except to just look around. The bus runs every twenty minutes and it only takes twenty minutes to get into the city so we were there just before twelve. Just before twelve is just before lunch time so after a walk around Eagle Market, we went into Intu, the giant shopping centre and had lunch at Carluccio’s. We didn’t really do much else and definitely didn’t spend enough time in Derby to form an opinion of the place but the heat and humidity continued to oppress so we caught the bus back to Shardlow, returning to the boat just after three o’clock.
Shardlow is a strange place, once an inland port, it still retains a lot of its character due to the presence of so many old warehouses and other associated buildings – many of which are listed to one grade or another. In many ways there are similarities with Stourport but equally there are many differences. Shardlow boasts eight pubs but very little in the way of shops unless you count the local marina / caravan park which stocks a few basics and the distant Post Office / tiny general store (It’s up for sale if anyone fancies it – Rightmove. We weren’t too interested in either really, the heatwave broke down with an almighty crash bringing high winds and rain for the weekend. I did manage to pop out and visit 3/8ths of the local hostelries in the two days that we were moored in Shardlow but other than that we just hid indoors and enjoyed the cooler, fresher air.