Sunday, 23 June 2019

A dawn start and a tranquil journey

Looking upstream from Wallingford visitor moorings at 5am on Thursday (20th June) as I make our morning cuppa ...
and downstream at 6:15 as we're preparing to leave

The River Thames has been fast flowing for the last couple of weeks due to heavy rain and approaching locks past fast running weirs is always a little tricky particularly here at Benson where a wide berth has to be taken and there is no solid barrier against the strong weir flow.
Once through Benson Lock we pass Benson Marine, base of Le Boat hire cruisers. 

MerlinV, a cruiser funded by The Nuffield Trust for the Forces of the Crown.
Shillingford Bridge ...
and the obligatory photo of the imposing Shillingford Court where part of the property has recently been sold, subject to contract HERE
Where the River Thame converges with the River Thames
Waiting below Days Lock

First time for a couple of years that we've seen boats moored on the meadows above Days Lock ... Sue mentions that the 'new' owner of this land has put it up for sale ... let's hope that the next 'new' owner  continues to allow moorings, even paid ones, and also allows access to the moorers to access the beautiful village of Dorchester, another location for the TV series Midsomer Murders.
Clifton Hampden Bridge with its six Gothic Arches built circa 1864
Sharp right here ... the Le Boat has come from the opposite direction and has turned in front of us ... not sure if we can both fit into Clifton Hampden Lock ...

we did ... just!

I asked the crew of the Le Boat if they'd been to  the Plough pub, they had, and also stayed overnight there.  It's something we've not done ... so next time we're this way ... perhaps.
The forecast is rain about midday (it's now 9:50)
Over to our left we can see the Grade II listed Church of St Peter and St Paul in the village of Appleford on Thames.

Approaching Culham Lock we can see part of Old Culham Bridge on our left ...
whilst we travel under the same bridge into the lock cut to the right which is actually Swift Ditch. The stone bridge which was built circa 1418 played a key role in the English Civil War in 1645 known as The Battle of Culham Bridge ... read more HERE
Beautiful poppies in the grass verge above Culham Lock ...
and a pair of Pheasants as we moor up near Sutton Courtenay at 10:45 ... mission accomplished ... without getting wet!

Nice views too as we sat on the deck revelling in the peace and quiet of this mooring ...

until the rowers came ... or more importantly the noisy coach in his noisy motor boat!

We shall stay here over the weekend.


Nev Wells said...

Lovely atmospheric write up of your cruise.

Carol said...

Thank you Nev, you're very kind!