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  1. #11
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    Surrey
    Posts
    165

    Default Re: USA Visitor Boating your Thames (Again)

    Hi Dave

    Good to hear you are returning to the Thames again.

    We did meet briefly at Romney lock on your last trip and had some correspondence [cant also believe how quickly those 10 years have gone by]

    As said by others not much has changed and the non tidal Thames is still a delight.
    If you have a week from the 20th April then you will have plenty of time to do the trip. I suspect your Horizon Le Boat won't pass under Folly Bridge Oxford but you could easily go up to Abingdon / Sandford down to Hampton Court / Teddington and back to Penton Hook for the following Saturday morning.
    This obviously depends upon how many hours you wish to cruise per day and which part of the Thames you want to spend the most time at. Hampton Court is about a 3 hour cruise from Penton Hook and is an iconic mooring spot, but as I am sure you remember from last time their are many other great places to moor.

    It would be nice if our paths crossed again and enjoy your trip

  2. #12
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Location
    Sussex
    Posts
    4,195

    Default Re: USA Visitor Boating your Thames (Again)

    Quote Originally Posted by joejo View Post
    Hi Dave

    Good to hear you are returning to the Thames again.

    We did meet briefly at Romney lock on your last trip and had some correspondence [cant also believe how quickly those 10 years have gone by]

    As said by others not much has changed and the non tidal Thames is still a delight.
    If you have a week from the 20th April then you will have plenty of time to do the trip. I suspect your Horizon Le Boat won't pass under Folly Bridge Oxford but you could easily go up to Abingdon / Sandford down to Hampton Court / Teddington and back to Penton Hook for the following Saturday morning.
    This obviously depends upon how many hours you wish to cruise per day and which part of the Thames you want to spend the most time at. Hampton Court is about a 3 hour cruise from Penton Hook and is an iconic mooring spot, but as I am sure you remember from last time their are many other great places to moor.

    It would be nice if our paths crossed again and enjoy your trip
    I checked yesterday with the Benson yard (as reported earlier and th ekind lady said that the specific boat would pass under Folly, with care and the Bimini down.

    Some moorings are now charged by an unpopular car parking company. Those at Reading (good for a quich shop at Tesco) with no free period and Hampton Court has one night free, but you have to regiser by phone or on the web.

    Canalplan says it's a one day trip from Benson to Oxford - but that's at canal speeds - thus for a first day you'd have to push it. 20 odd miles and 6 locks.

  3. #13
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Wimborne, Dorset
    Posts
    3,005

    Default Re: USA Visitor Boating your Thames (Again)

    We used to find it more convenient to moor at Abingdon and get the bus into Oxford in later years.

  4. #14
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    hertfordshire
    Posts
    930

    Default Re: USA Visitor Boating your Thames (Again)

    or there is the bus stop just outside of Benson's marina that goes there (about a 20-25 minute journey).

  5. #15
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Location
    Sussex
    Posts
    4,195

    Default Re: USA Visitor Boating your Thames (Again)

    Quote Originally Posted by thamesS23 View Post
    or there is the bus stop just outside of Benson's marina that goes there (about a 20-25 minute journey).
    Good heavens - what's the point of hiring a boat - and then going to a destination by bus??
    For Oxenford, the approach can be majestic (depends on whatever the source boater has previously experienced) from Sandford (a slightly deep but wide lock - frightens some) the river winds around the countryside until you arrive at Ifffley Lock. In previous years it had a flourishing garden lovingly tended by a previous lockie. May not be the brightest at an early date in the season, but still a sight.

    In a run up to the city, you may be accompanied by Eights and the occasional Four with a magnificent view of the Cathedral and Merton College (as seen on't telly). Even the winding channel up to Osney Lock has an air of peaceful calm as you pass by some of the Colleges residencies.


    The moorings above Osney Lock are surprisingly quiet - given that the road over the bridge is one of the major roads into the City.

    We're amateur choir singers and enjoy Choral Evensong for its music (-not especially churchy are we, but listening to the service - right in the middle of the 'action' - in some colleges there are no congregational pews, so you sit in with the choir relishing in all four parts of the harmony.
    If you're lucky the organ will play a lusty tune as you exit - giving the Organ Scholar points for his degree. Merton College has an American Dobson organ with some fine pedal stops - and can be made to sound like a Wurlitzer (if no-one in authority is listening...)

    The are pubs, some genuine ethnic restaurants in Hythe Bridge street (neat the river) plus all the usual stuff.

    There's a lot to see - if you will, quiet back streets for atmosphere, Ashmoleean for art, Mathematical museum for quirky analytical engines, Natural History museum and behind it the Pitt Rivers museum - which is not what you would expect (not stuffy, and fascinating).

    To my mind a day trip is ghastly, but if you're staying overnight you wont feel the pressure as you would if there's a bus to catch or a fixed meal to take - on a boat you can do as you please.


    Enough.

  6. #16
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Posts
    37

    Default Re: USA Visitor Boating your Thames (Again)

    Quote Originally Posted by Pump-Out View Post
    One thing of which you should be aware:
    The EA have cut the number of Lock relief staff. It is now much more usual to find a lock unmanned (unpersonned?) during what should be normal cruising/working hours.

    Look out for the blue "Self Service" boards as you approach, and be prepared for "Miss Crew" to be operating the locks more than a decade ago.
    Thanks for the heads-up. We'll be on the lookout for those boards. I'll pass to "Le Barge" Ladies that they might be doing some lock DIY'ing. They will be thrilled.

  7. #17
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Posts
    37

    Default Re: USA Visitor Boating your Thames (Again)

    Quote Originally Posted by joejo View Post
    Hi Dave

    Good to hear you are returning to the Thames again.

    We did meet briefly at Romney lock on your last trip and had some correspondence [cant also believe how quickly those 10 years have gone by]

    As said by others not much has changed and the non tidal Thames is still a delight.
    If you have a week from the 20th April then you will have plenty of time to do the trip. I suspect your Horizon Le Boat won't pass under Folly Bridge Oxford but you could easily go up to Abingdon / Sandford down to Hampton Court / Teddington and back to Penton Hook for the following Saturday morning.
    This obviously depends upon how many hours you wish to cruise per day and which part of the Thames you want to spend the most time at. Hampton Court is about a 3 hour cruise from Penton Hook and is an iconic mooring spot, but as I am sure you remember from last time their are many other great places to moor.

    It would be nice if our paths crossed again and enjoy your trip
    Hi Joejo,

    I'm told the crew remembers you. Thank you for responding with good info. I think we may stay clear of the Folly Bridge, perhaps mooring at Abingdon before going downriver. I'm not sure if our boat insurance covers being wedged under a bridge and I don't want to be the first to test it. We like to cruise about 3/4 hours a day. We do intend to try for Hampton Court this trip and would welcome suggestions on mooring do's and don'ts there. We'd also like to moor near enough to Clivedon Hotel to walk there for a visit.

    With luck our paths will cross again.

  8. #18
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Posts
    37

    Default Re: USA Visitor Boating your Thames (Again)

    Quote Originally Posted by TrueBlue View Post
    I checked yesterday with the Benson yard (as reported earlier and th ekind lady said that the specific boat would pass under Folly, with care and the Bimini down.

    Some moorings are now charged by an unpopular car parking company. Those at Reading (good for a quich shop at Tesco) with no free period and Hampton Court has one night free, but you have to regiser by phone or on the web.

    Canalplan says it's a one day trip from Benson to Oxford - but that's at canal speeds - thus for a first day you'd have to push it. 20 odd miles and 6 locks.
    Thanks. I think we'll let someone else test a Horizon on the Folly Bridge. Pushing for Oxford is a bit far now that we are doing some serious route study. We're thinking of Abingdon with enough time to tour, visit a pub or two, and waddle back to "Le Barge". Quick stop for Tesco in Reading will go into our plan and we appreciate your advice on that.

  9. #19
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Posts
    37

    Default Re: USA Visitor Boating your Thames (Again)

    Quote Originally Posted by TrueBlue View Post
    Good heavens - what's the point of hiring a boat - and then going to a destination by bus??
    For Oxenford, the approach can be majestic (depends on whatever the source boater has previously experienced) from Sandford (a slightly deep but wide lock - frightens some) the river winds around the countryside until you arrive at Ifffley Lock. In previous years it had a flourishing garden lovingly tended by a previous lockie. May not be the brightest at an early date in the season, but still a sight.

    In a run up to the city, you may be accompanied by Eights and the occasional Four with a magnificent view of the Cathedral and Merton College (as seen on't telly). Even the winding channel up to Osney Lock has an air of peaceful calm as you pass by some of the Colleges residencies.


    The moorings above Osney Lock are surprisingly quiet - given that the road over the bridge is one of the major roads into the City.

    We're amateur choir singers and enjoy Choral Evensong for its music (-not especially churchy are we, but listening to the service - right in the middle of the 'action' - in some colleges there are no congregational pews, so you sit in with the choir relishing in all four parts of the harmony.
    If you're lucky the organ will play a lusty tune as you exit - giving the Organ Scholar points for his degree. Merton College has an American Dobson organ with some fine pedal stops - and can be made to sound like a Wurlitzer (if no-one in authority is listening...)

    The are pubs, some genuine ethnic restaurants in Hythe Bridge street (neat the river) plus all the usual stuff.

    There's a lot to see - if you will, quiet back streets for atmosphere, Ashmoleean for art, Mathematical museum for quirky analytical engines, Natural History museum and behind it the Pitt Rivers museum - which is not what you would expect (not stuffy, and fascinating).

    To my mind a day trip is ghastly, but if you're staying overnight you wont feel the pressure as you would if there's a bus to catch or a fixed meal to take - on a boat you can do as you please.


    Enough.
    Well, you have us reconsidering our upstream plan to go beyond Abingdon. Everything you describe is everything we hope to partake. Evensong sounds wonderful. Maybe we can get close enough to Oxford to go into town without getting wedged under a bridge.

  10. #20
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Posts
    37

    Default Re: USA Visitor Boating your Thames (Again)

    Question from Dave here -- We will be cruising from 20 April - 27 April. Should we adjust cruising time and mooring up times for higher number of boaters during the Easter Holiday period? Anyone have experience on the Benson to Henley section during this period? I expect weather may play a part though I've heard all weather is tolerable weather for an Englishman and his boat.
    Last edited by djones18; 05-04-19 at 02:38.

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