Friday, 5 June 2015

Stalked and the blog reader

We left Oxford by going up the Oxford Canal and then turning onto Duke’s Cut to re-join the Thames.  Turning right, we headed upstream before stopping for the night on a 24 hour mooring immediately in front of the water point above Eynsham Lock.  It was an excellent mooring but there was only room for one boat.

enysham lock

Eynsham Lock

After dinner I went for a local walk across the fields eventually arriving in the village of Eynsham.  It was there that I came upon Eynsham Cross.


I couldn’t find much information, apart from the following.  Eynsham Cross dates from c1350.  It stands in what was once a busy market square in the village of Eynsham.  This isn’t the original cross which had long eroded.  A reconstructed cross was based on drawings dated 1813.  Apparently the cross on the top of the column was replaced by a sun dial.

I walked back to the mooring via the road where I discovered the bridge immediately in front of our mooring is privately owned and a toll bridge.

toll bridge

Swinford Toll Bridge

Some interesting facts about the bridge.  It was opened in 1769 and funded by the Earl of Abingdon.  The bridge has its own Act of Parliament which allows the owners to collect a toll.  The Act also makes it illegal to construct a bridge across the Thames within 3 miles either side of Swinford Bridge.  The owners do not pay tax on the revenue and it’s one of two existing toll bridges on the Thames.  It was sold in 2009 for £1.08 million.

We were heading off to bed at 10.30 when Jan told me the view of the bridge from the side hatch was worth photographing

night shot

It didn’t look that good.  The camera has captured more of the light.  Jan was up at 5am and took an early morning photo.

mist on the water

I was up at a more civilized hour

day shot

We left the mooring at 9.30 this morning with the intention of completing 3 hours of cruising.  Locks came and went.  Most of them were attended, although Jan doesn’t mind doing them herself.

lock clock scene

They are all very picturesque.  At one lock the keeper told us his father was the former lock keeper and lived in the lock cottage.  He had been raised in the cottage and was now the lock keeper.  A family tradition.

Throughout most of the day we were stalked. 


A C17 doing circuits.

I told Jan I thought RAF Brize Norton might be in the general area.  No doubt most UK service men and women are familiar with Brize Norton.  My experience was limited to 1984 when I arrived and departed the UK via the airbase when I participated in a major BAOR exercise in Germany that year.

We passed nb Urquhart Castle moored in a lovely rural setting when the lady popped her head out the side hatch to tell us she had only just finished reading the blog.  I did suggest she should have better things to do with her time! Smile  Sorry we didn’t get your names.  Please leave a comment!

urquhart Castle

I’ll finish this post by mentioning the comment on yesterday’s post which was left by Dave.  He has given us some additional information on things to look at in Oxford.  We will tray and fit them in on our return journey.


nb Achernar said...

That brings back memories. Op Lionheart is in my dim and distant past too.

Tom and Jan said...

Correct! A very interesting time for me.

Mandy Klyne said...

Glad you didn't get my picture! We are Graham and Mandy accompanied by Lola the cat. Watch out for the cows in the meadow at Lechlade - they chew ropes!

Tom and Jan said...

Hi Mandy,

We'll get your photo on the way back!😂

Too late with the cow warning. One fell onto the boat at 5am this morning when it slipped into the Thames! 😯

Brian and Diana on NB Harnser said...

You didn't visit the pub, they still have beer in kegs set up behind the bar with taps on and draw it straight into the glass, no pumps or gas involved.

Tom and Jan said...

I'm not all that interested in warm flat ale. I'M used to the cold and fizzy stuff!😁

But it was an interesting walk around the village and the butcher's sausages look good.