Category Archives: River Thames

Abingdon Weir, Drought Status, New Abbey Meadow fence


Newcomer reported that, on Thursday Morning, he saw a lot of water birds on the slope of Abingdon Weir at 9 am. They were enjoying the slow water flow and eating the water weed from the flow. He did not have his Apple phone with him.

Hoping for a picture, I went there this morning. Instead of many birds, a family of ducks was resting on the weir substructure,

and thousands of small fish were nibbling at water weed near the surface just below the weir.

The Environment Agency announced today that the Thames area, including Abingdon, has moved into drought status. Drought status means that the Environment Agency and water companies can start implementing drought plans, including a hosepipe ban. Some Councils have implemented a splash park turn-off.

At Abbey Meadow, a new fence has been erected to stop young children from falling into the river. The fence could deter geese from entering the splash park, although they were still there today.

Reading runs from Oxford to Abingdon


Salter’s Steamers run a boat between Oxford and Abingdon for pre-booked groups of 30 or more.

The boat came through Abingdon Lock at about 4:30 pm.

Postcards, lupin seeds, and The River Thames Guidebook are on sale at the lock. All proceeds to RNLI.

Reading carried over thirty passengers, and many waved at the children waiting to cross the lock.

The Abingdon-on-Thames swan family are still together after the swan-upping two weeks ago.

There was a training session at the Open Air Pool with lifeguards helping a volunteer who pretended to faint. After checking her breathing and her airway was clear, they left her in the recovery position.

Low River Levels


BBC News reports ‘England had its driest July since 1935, with parts having the least rainfall on record, the Met Office has said.’

The amount of water flowing over Abingdon Weir is the lowest I have seen. Sedges are taking over upstream from the weir.

Your bathroom taps create more white water than Abingdon Weir. More water is going through Abingdon Lock, as the gates open for boats, than over the weir.

The River Ock flows slowly, and sedges impede more of the stream.

Low river levels are bad for wildlife and agriculture.

A walk by the river


Walking back beside the Thames at Culham Reach we saw rowing boats ready for the next effort, Canada Geese, and fishermen. There was a cool wind and occasional showers.

The rowers came past encouraged by the cox who said ‘half way’. After that the path got muddy.

The river itself was a muddle of reflections and looked bluer than the sky.

Back in Abingdon, the bells of St Helen’s were sounding the 70th anniversary.