Well, South first. I learned a lesson: always be aware of where the winding holes are - especially if you are heading away from your intended destination.
(including a lock, twice) later we were back where we started.
Stoke was as colourful as ever, with an Elvis impersonator singing from the roof of his boat, loads of derelict bottle ovens and, finally, a rather nice sunset.
The boat is now safely moored up near my parents' house, and we'll return next weekend for the next (longer) leg of the journey home.