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There were no other boats around to disturb us near Coven but we were still up and about at six. With there being more than five miles to cover before we reached the services and the first of the downhill locks at Gailey, we just took our time and enjoyed another leisurely cruise in the early morning sunshine. In reality, we didn’t have much choice but to take it easy once we reached the Anchor pub. There were boats moored for the best part of a mile along the towpath. Hotel boats “Duke” and “Duchess” had passed us yesterday afternoon and were also moored along that stretch, breasted up of course just to keep passing boats on their toes in the narrow channel that remained beside them.

When we reached Gailey, there was space on the water point so we were able to complete our services in good time. CRT were in attendance running water down from the summit to compensate for low pound levels below. The levels seemed alright to us as we made our way down through the five locks on the way to Penkridge but maybe the problem is further down. The Trent & Mersey canal is still more than ten miles away but we have heard reports of low levels above Fradley so perhaps there is a link there. It will be another week or so before we get there so we might find out then or maybe we will never know.

It was around eleven o’clock when we moored above Filance lock on the edge of Penkridge. Once settled, we took a walk into the village for a look around although being Sunday it was quiet with most shops closed for the day. In the late afternoon we had Sunday dinner, the lamb that we had bought in Coven the day before had been gently cooking in the slow cooker for a few hours as we travelled along and for the time we had been in the village. It was delicious, much as the steak pies had been on Saturday.

Penkridge is a place that we’ve visited a couple of times before and we quite like it so the intention is to stay for a few days before moving on again.