Wednesday, 2 May 2012

The Delights of Wallingford

Sad to say we are still moored at Wallingford.  The river continues to race past us and we cannot yet move from here.  We now have had 4 days here and our mooring which started looking like this:
Now looks like this:

We have spent our time visiting the castle and the museum, touring the charity shops and most importantly taking precautions against the boats drifting out of the river onto the towpath and getting stranded there.  Victoria used her charms on some local builders who have given us some scaffold poles to hammer into the river bed beside the boats and today a local riverside resident has allowed us to fill our water tanks from her garden tap.  As I type this we need wellington boots to leave the boats.  If the water rises any further we may be unable to get off the boats without swimming.

The crews of the 7 boats moored here have got to know each other and we have been helping each other to  get through this problem.  Last night one chap ran a book on when the towpath would flood.  The river did not rise as fast as we expected and it was the morning before we saw this had happened overnight.  Since then the river has risen further but we have hopes that things will improve tomorrow.

Watch this space as we disappear without trace.  Just hope the mooring ropes hold.


  1. Ian and Helen - Not much fun I shouldn't hunk. Well done Victoria for getting the scaffold poles - I seem to remember mooring just where you are and the top of my roof was level with the grass!

    Hope you don't have to spend too long there and that all are safe and well and dry!


  2. We were moored in exactly the same spot in 2008 when the Thames rose over 5ft overnight, one of us had to abandon the boat with the dog as the water on the towpath was almost waist height, we do hope it doesn't rise any more at least you have the flood poles which we didn't as we kept floating onto the towpath! Great to see your pictures though and hope the conditions improve soon, you will be awake all night loosening yourropes when it goes back down! Doug and James

    1. Nice to see that our blog is being read by a wider group than just friends and relatives. As you can see from the next post we are still here, though thankfully the level of the river has gone down now.
      Where are you so that we can keep an eye open for you when we do eventually move from here?

    2. We are still sadly at home as James is under the hospital at present otherwise we would have set off by now and been on the Thames!! It would be our forth time on the Thames and every time it has gone into flood, so it could be our fault? We hope to head down the Oxford Canal from Brinklow, where we are moored for the time being. Hope to meet you at some point. Glad to see the waters are reducing, we have been talking to Sue and Richard on Indigo Dream (opposite you) noticed them in your picture, I know they will be pleased that they may be able to move soon!

    3. We may well see you as we plan to use the Oxford Canal to Birmingham via Napton. We now have a promise of a tow by a tug boat to Oxford so we now anticipate being on the Oxford Canal by tomorrow evening. Fingers crossed!

  3. Hi Helen and Ian

    Good to see the braced poles. Your ropes should be fine if you protect from chafing and hackling - amazing how quickly ropes can chafe on rough concrete, steel etc. (Braid on braid is better than hawser; chain best of all).

    Personally I'd put two bow warps on as belt and braces. And I'd run a rope to dry land as a safety rope to clip on to in case the water rises further and you need to get ashore. But with 7 boats there I'm sure you've a wealth on experience to draw on (and talk about to wile away the hours...).

    William and Daphne


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