Wednesday, 24 June 2015

Missing explorer found!

Missing explorer gone native on the K&A

The missing explorer Anthony 'Mac' Mackenzie has been found alive and well in Wiltshire.
Mac disappeared on our previous expedition down the Kennet & Avon Canal two years ago. We left him doing solo explorations near Devizes but when he missed several pre-arranged meetings, sadly the Tug Harry expedition had to move on without him.
There have been several reported sightings since then but none has been confirmed so I am delighted to report that we were re-united with him several days ago near Bradford-on-Avon.
It seems that Mac has 'gone native' and has been living among the tribes who inhabit the banks of the canal in these parts. There are several tribes here: some are established and practise crafts or agricultural activities. Others are nomadic and travel short lengths of the canal and it is one of these that Mac has joined.
After a couple of enjoyable meetings and a short trip with Mac from one of his nomadic stopping points to another, we said our farewells and left him to carry on with our latest trip.
The handsome village church at Seend

And speaking of missing explorers, yesterday we visited the handsome village church at Seend where there is a memorial to William Rozet Martin who disappeared in 1934 on an expedition to Lake Rudolf (now Lake Turkana) in Kenya.
Memorial to a missing explorer in Seend churchyard
He and a companion were part of an expedition led by Vivian Fuchs (later to lead the first crossing of Antarctica) when they went by small boat to explore an uninhabited island in the lake and were never seen again – most probably drowned when their boat was swamped in difficult currents around the island.
The pretty Send main street in a rare traffic-free moment
Born in the USA of British parents, his memorial stands alongside their graves in the churchyard.The village of Seend sits on a ridge and offers stunning views in all directions – after a couple of days travelling through a bleak hinterland after the delights of Bradford it was good to see the rolling hills of Wiltshire start to appear.
Unfortunately Seend, a prosperous village in its day with many magnificent old houses, is swamped in noise these days from the very busy A361 that runs through it.
We had a farewell dinner with our gone-native friend Mac last night at the canalside Barge Inn, Seend. It's a popular pub but, sadly, the food turned out to be poor so we returned to Harry for some final drinks before he returned to his mooring in the bankside jungles.
Today we will be moving on towards the metaphorically and physically looming Caen Hill flight to be tackled probably tomorrow.


  1. "Born in the USA of British parents, his memorial stands alongside their graves in the churchyard."

    I don't expect a dangling modifier from a scribe like you!

  2. Fair point but standards slip - except at the Beeb of course where the ghost of Lord Reith stalks the studios.