I'll come back to this bridge later (in two ways).
anchors are no joke) and we breasted up to them. David and Fran, fellow BCF members whom we hadn't met before, were waiting for their friends John and Jenny to join them for a meal in the pub followed by a trip on their boat. In the meantime they welcomed us on board and were convivial hosts.
When John and Jenny arrived I took the opportunity for a group photo ...
|John (standing), Fran, Jenny, Jan, me, David|
… followed by another in the pub (yes, we were invited to join them and it would have been rude not to).
|David, Jan, John, Fran, me, Jenny|
It was great meeting you all - let's do it again sometime.
After this we carried on for another hour to Weedon, where we tied up so I could cycle back to Stoke Bruerne to get the car. I had planned to do most of this by road as it's generally quicker than the towpath, and I get to see some lovely villages and countryside. Initially, though, I took the towpath to the Narrowboat pub where I could cross the A5 and cycle along lanes to Nether Heyford, Bugbrooke, Gayton and Blisworth en route to Stoke Bruerne. I remembered much of the route from the last time I cycled it. (Was it last year or earlier this year? Probably both.)
Just back from where we tied up I saw this boat, which will be recognised by at least one regular reader. I'll put up a shot with the name later in this post.
And this is where I came unstuck for the second time. My OS map shows a level crossing adjacent to Bridge 43; this has now been dismantled and I was met by another fence.
Oh, I got slightly damp in the drizzle. Can't complain, though: it was the first rain I've cycled in during this year's boating, which started in April.
And the boat near us? Bakewell.
Update to say that I received an e-mail from CRT this morning promising to pass on my concerns about Lock 18 on the Stoke Bruerne flight to the "local team".