0 miles, 0 locks
After a morning spent filling in application forms, James and I went with Jim for an exploratory walk, to see where the nearest waterpoint was and check out the state of the river. We resolved to make some progess on Sunday, so that when the river opened we'd be in pole position and so that we could fill and empty the relelant tanks before setting off. We wandered back though the town and past the Malt Sovel pub, which has a very good reputation, according to CAMRA, and decided to check it out later on.
On the way back, James and I discovered a ladder in some bushes by the towpath. We pulled it out, and found it to be in quite good condition. James sawed off the broken bit and we now have a very useful gangplank for if we have to moor in a daifficult place on the Nene!
As we'd planned, James and I met Jim in the Malt Shovel at about 8. It was extremely good. Jim was happy with London Pride, James with some 9% Somerset Scrumpy, and me with some delicious draught Belgian fruit beers. It really is excellent and we all recommed it heartily - 15 real ales, 4 ciders and an great atmosphere. Its also not far from the moorings above Lock 17, so easily accessible for boaters!