We topped up with water just below the lock, then got away. A couple of early-birds had already gone up, but there was no-one ahead of us as we got through the lock.
After Yard Lock I trotted along to the chandlery at Stone Boatbuilders while Mags brought Seyella along the pound, then we had a short wait while NB Flat Bottomed Girl came down Newcastle Road Lock.
The 4 locks in Stone were the first to be constructed on the Trent and Mersey Canal. Work began in 1766, but it was 11 years before the whole route was open, the last bit being the 1¾ mile long Harecastle Tunnel at the summit. Digging a 9 foot wide tunnel that distance was a considerable achievement with the equipment available at the time.
The last of the 4 locks in Stone is Limekiln, then there’s time for a brew before getting to the bottom of Meaford Locks.
Here we slowed down dramatically with 2 single-handers in the flight ahead of us. So a steady climb up the 4 locks saw us out at the top by 12:30.
Another 3 miles of gentle cruising and we pulled over between Barlaston and Trentham near the Wedgewood factory moorings.
Large gardens, fine house and your own moorings. Bliss.
Locks 8, miles 3¾