Ice-breaker in wartime UK

Thames Conservancy tug icebreaking

For some time now, my good friend Peter Bailey at the Sunbury and Shepperton Local History Society has been reminding me that in the society’s Aladdin’s Cave of treasures about the history of the river and the surrounding area, they’ve had these four photos of the Thames frozen over in 1940.

A ferry interesting start to married life

Bob Warden

£9 a week rent from £10 pay, but Bob and Rose had a wonderful view of the Thames

Operatic past for riverside home

D’Oyly Carte Island

I seem to be on something of a roll here with articles about islands – but, hey, there are loads of islands on our stretch of the Thames, so why not?

A Thameside calling: To live by the river

Thames Ditton Island

Living beside the water has always acted as a magnet – particularly for those who can afford to pay the premium for having a view out onto the river.

History of island with a ‘window on the Thames’

Truss's Island

Reader Joan Tait of Chertsey Lane, Egham Hythe wrote to me recently asking about the history of Truss’s Island on the Surrey bank of the Thames just above Penton Hook Lock.

Getting taste of island life

The Desborough Cut

There are many islands on the River Thames, some containing luxurious waterside homes, some mere mounds of mud and sand that have the odd tree clinging precariously to life on their edges and some providing bases for water-related industries like boat-building.

Thornycroft memories

It seems I was not alone in mourning the passing of part of the old Thornycroft launch works on Platts Eyot which was destroyed by a fire recently – it brought back memories for a couple of families who had happy associations with the company.

Very sad end of era

I was really sad to see this photo of the ruins of the old Thornycroft yard on Platts Eyot going up in flames last week. It truly marked the end of a era in a very sad way as the blaze, which was fought by fire crews from all over the area, put the final nail in the coffin of what was once a thriving local business that built some of the finest fast launches in the world.

Idyllic gem’s hidden away

There are many idyllic places from which to enjoy the beauties of the Thames but one of the best kept secrets around seems to be Truss’s Island – a tiny ait on the Surrey bank of the river quite close to Staines Bridge.

Islands in the stream

There's always been something very appealing about the idea of living on an island for me. Just the thought of being surrounded by water, cocooned from the rigours of the world and able to gaze out on a tranquil, lazily-flowing river is enough to make me smile.