All through the night, we heard the rain drilling down against our windows, and so it has continued. Our most kind hosts took pity upon us, making light of throwing our bikes into their people carrier and driving us to Burghley this morning. So instead of 45 miles' exploration of some grand houses and village churches to the West of the A1, we contented ourselves with a good look at Burghley House and its amazing collections.
Not that I have anything particular against the National Trust, I can't help thinking that a house like Burghley benefits from being held within a family framework: certainly, a visit makes an exceptionally pleasant day out, and it would have been even better if the weather had allowed us to see the gardens. We spoke to many different people working there as we went round and without exception they seemed to confirm the same thing: it's a very tight and happy ship.
There was still a dozen or so miles to do at the end of the day, to reach our final B&B at Woodnewton - an enforced route along an awful lot of A roads. Our hostess looked justifiably horrified as we appeared, dripping on her doorstep.