I suppose it took about half-an-hour for us to get going and of course, in that time conditions had changed again and the light was now on red. It was a "steady" red (meaning "proceed with caution") rather than a "flashing" one (navigation closed) so we thought we'd carry on anyway. ("I've started, so I'll finish. . ."). We got through alright, although I was surprised by how much the flow had increased in a short time and very glad that we didn't meet anything coming the other way.
We had a slight hold-up at Stamp End lock when the control panel showed a red light, indicating that one of the bottom paddles was open. It didn't seem to be and when I went to check someone on the lock landing came and told me that the lock was "broken" and that "special men" came everyday to look at it! (English was not his first language). But the paddle was actually open a fraction and once I'd closed it everything worked and we got through easily, but surprising a boater tied up on the bottom landing who had apparently accepted their word and been waiting a while!
Once on the Witham we made good progress. The river was almost deserted and coupled with the fact that it runs through empty and rather featureless countryside gave us a great sense of isolation.
|Isolation on the Witham|
After taking on water we carried on down to Kirkstead Bridge for the night. Despite being in the middle of nowhere it once had a railway station "Woodhall Junction" most of which survives ,but without tracks or trains of course. There are also two pubs. The Kings Arms, on the west bank,which had no decent beer and the Railway, on the east, which had an excellent pint of Bateman's.
My post on being