Well not exactly. Just as I finished that last post, hoping fondly that the seventh new kitten was in a comfortable new home, I heard loud mewing from the front of the house, by the dustbins. I wondered if the mother cat had in fact returned so I went outside... and found the noisy ginger kitten, standing by their original nest, looking very lost and lonely. Meanwhile all the other six were trying to climb the fence between the front and back gardens!
So I took the ginger kitten to join his siblings, and they greeted him very joyfully, rubbing around each other and generally sounding much happier. Now they've all crawled inside the neighbour's box, and - from the general lack of mewing - seem to have gone to sleep.
Our cats are a bit confused by all this but so far haven't gone near the kittens, which is just as well. Tessie, our youngest, can be quite vicious with cats she sees as intruders.