One of the things we’re enjoying about being on the Thames is the excitement of wild mooring. Can we find a bank where we can get the stern in close enough for me to clamber off with my dignity intact, and long enough that we can get the bow tied off securely?
And preferably one that we wont be charged for. One of the things we’re not so keen on is the uncertainty of not being sure we will be able to moor roughly where we want.
Beale Park hit the spot, and with a 4 day weekend approaching the river was suddenly coming alive with craft of all shapes and sizes, so we happily tied off to the convenient overhanging trees and settled down to watch the world go by, even if the weather was a bit dodgy, we even had a kingfisher family living directly opposite which provided a lot of entertainment
Thankfully Thursday dawned with clear sky and mist rising.
But alas although it remained clear over Buckingham Palace by the time the fly past was dispersing over Oxfordshire it had clouded over, we’d also got a few storm clouds above. But we still got to see quite a few of the planes that had saluted Her Majesty.
We were able to take a very pleasant walk along the river and down Shooters Hill into Pangbourne village. We couldn’t help but notice a series of very interesting looking houses. It turns out they are known locally as “the seven deadly sins” of Pangbourne. They were built in 1896 to house the seven “lady friends” of the then Prince of Wales, who became King Edward VII
Pangbourne has a regal past with Bertwulf, King of Mercia being granted lands here in AD 844, Athough nowadays his allotted spot is on the village sign, underneath a Viking longboat, (frequently referred to as narrowboats by saxon gongoozlers)
The sign also pays homage to local resident, Kenneth Graeme, who wrote Wind in the Willows (although the book had already been written before he moved here) but its thought that E H Shepard based his drawings for the book from sketches done around this section of the river. It is a very pretty village.
Theres a brilliant butchers Greens of Pangbourne who boast having the best pies. I think we have been spoilt with good butchers recently, because we both agreed it was excellent so much so that we bought a second for our onward journey
On Saturday, whilst we watched Rod Stewart massacring Sweet Caroline at the platinum concert, I kept noticing the sky over London, and sure enough that same sky was all aglow over Firecrest.
But despite the red sky at night Sundays weather wasn’t condusive to us sitting outside for a “river party” so we ended our jubilee celebrations with a hint of a rainbow.
now, how long can I keep my bunting flapping for. Will we be celebrating Her Majesty’s century in 2026 or even her 75th Jubilee in 2027. Part of me hopes so, but by then I will try to devise a way to stop the pennants flapping onto the roof.