Tip of Foxton Locks to up the Welford Arm 8.9 miles, 1 lock, travelled in 3 hours 20 minutes.
After posting yesterday there came a knocking on the boat, which got Paddy all excited. I opened the engine room door to find Irene, Ian and their lab Jade off of NB Free Spirit standing on the towpath, they had made it to Foxton from Kilby Bridge. We stood out on the towpath nattering for a while, before deciding to meet up at 7pm in The bridge 61 Inn. After dinner, I made the fires up and we set off down the locks to the pub to meet up with Irene and Ian.
With drinks in hand a good evening was had by us all. The biggest topic of conversation was our pets and toilets did not get a mention all evening. Keith and I were so pleased to see both Irene and Ian before we head off north. It had been thought that we may miss them by one day, but we decided to wait so we could see them and I am so very pleased we did, because we had a fantastic evening with them. There was lots of laughter as we exchanged stories. Hopefully we will see them later in the year at Stoke Bruerne's 'Village at War' weekend. We said our goodbyes and wandered back up the locks. By the time we got back to the boat it was 10.45pm and neither of us was particularly tired, but I still laid the bed out and prepared for a good nights kip.
Today was moving day.
So at 9.10am we left our over night mooring and headed off to Welford. The ice had pretty much all gone, we encountered some just past North Kilworth boatyard and then there was quite a bit along the Welford Arm, but it was very slushy so did not bother us at all. Having climbed up through the lock, we then winded and moored up just above it. Just as we tied up Paul the local patrol officer came along the towpath, he had been on his rounds. We stood and had a very interesting conversation with him about the overstaying boats on his patch, and what was going to be done about them, because there is now a new enforcement officer on the patch, who we actually know very well and he is setting out his stall already with patrol notices being handed out. For the past 18 months to 2 years, we were told there has been a lack of action, but that is all changing now they have a new enforcement officer, who is going to make sure people abide by the terms and conditions of their licences. So we will watch with interest to see what happens and to see if anything has changed when we come back in October, if there is any water to come back on to LOL.
After lunch we took a walk up to Welford reservoir.
When we visited it last May, there was only 3ft of water in the middle, so there has certainly been an improvement, with more water than when we visited in May last year, but according to the rather new looking depth gauges it is still 4.1 metres down, which does not bode well for this seasons boating.
Back at the boat, dinner is now cooking in the back cabin stove, so we will be enjoying Sweet and Sour Chicken for dinner with Rice. Paddy is on the prowl, which must mean it is dinner time for him, as he gets fed at 5pm.
I am off now to check on dinner, feed mog and dog, stoke the fires and get all the evening chores done, before bedtime. So stay safe out there. x