Category Archives: River Thames

New boardwalk on the Thames Path


Contractors have created a new boardwalk on the Thames Path in Abingdon in the last week. The path becomes very wet at this point, near Barton Fields, during the winter months. The recycled plastic boards will not rot in damp conditions.

There have been signs warning of the pending work since last October but it must be easier to do the work during these dry summer months. The contractors have also filled in a few other sections with gravel.

(Thanks to Martin for letting me know).

Abingdon Lock walk returning by Kingfisher Barn


We saw Frank and other volunteers at Abingdon Lock today. Frank said that every day he sees somebody or a boat, that he has not seen since the first lockdown.

Salter Steamers are no longer running the daily Oxford to Abingdon service. They only come to Abingdon if they get a party booking. The Salter Steamer website says they only run the Oxford – Abingdon service if they get Pre Booked Groups of 40 or more. They seem to be running more round trips centered on Oxford including the Alice in Wonderland Cruise – a 2.5-hour round trip taking in views of Iffley Lock and Port Meadow.

There are lots of boats passing through Abingdon Lock. Last weekend they had 19 boats meeting near the Lock – all of the same boat type. Frank did say but my memory is not sure. It could have been Fairline.

Upstream from Abingdon Lock, a boat that sank over nine months ago is still there as a floating island.

Walking back along the track towards Abingdon the harvest happened early in August and the straw has been baled and taken away.

A crop of beans has been left unharvested. There is probably a very good reason for this. Beans help fix nitrates in the soil for the next crop.

The annual swan upping resumes but only as far as Moulsford


Last year the annual swan upping – census of swans – did not happen because of the pandemic. This week swan upping has resumed, and the colourful boats are rowing up the River Thames. They began today, Tuesday 20th July, from Eton Bridge, Berkshire and will finish at Moulsford on Thames, Oxfordshire on Thursday 22nd July.

They are not doing the full five days this year and will not visit Abingdon.

This group of four cygnets will escape being rounded up,

examined for injuries, weighed and ringed.

May Bank Holiday on the river


Visitors and locals enjoyed a sunny Bank Holiday Monday by the River Thames in Abingdon.

AV Boats
opened for the first time in Abingdon on the 5th May 2021 and are hiring out: motor boats, rowing boats, kayaks and canoes, and paddle boards.

Here is one of the AV motor boats next to one of their standup peddle-boards near the bridge.

There were lots of different boats on the river.