Welcome to The Thames Path Project
About the River Thames
Walking the river thames and Thames Path
About the Thames Path Project
Thames Path Project Rules
Stage Summary and Photos of the Thames Path
Schedule of Stages
Morsels including Gallery of Photos
Note: Please use a frames capable browser to see this site properly.
Some time around 10 years ago, a thought popped into my head that it would be an interesting experience to walk the entire length of the river thames along the Thames Path National Trail, which runs from the river source at Thames Head in Gloucestershire to the Thames Barrier at Woolwich. Without doing anything specific to encourage it, the idea somehow matured into an ambition.
It would take 10 days or more to walk the 180 miles in one go but unfortunately, due to the constraints of establishing and running my business, ABCoS IT Ltd, I have always considered the ambition to be one I would achieve later in life. Towards the end of Summer 2002, the thought occured to me that I could complete the entire river thames path walking in stages at weekends and the idea of the Thames Path Project was born. This site is the story of that project.
Click here to begin your own voyage of discovery. When you have had a look at the site please feel free to sign the visitors book.
The River Thames
The River Thames is undoubtedly one of Britain's most important rivers and has helped shape our history and way of life in many ways. Flowing from Thames Head near Kemble in Gloucestershire through Oxford, Reading, Maidenhead, Windsor and London to the North Sea, it is England's longest river at 213 miles. Its navigable, non-tidal section from Lechlade to Teddington is 135 miles long and contains 44 locks.
The River Thames has been host to battles, strategic crossing points, prehistoric settlements, industry of all shapes and sizes, royal palaces, hamlets, villages, towns, cities, commerce, global trade, murder, mystery, remarkable wildlife, literary inspiration, political scandal, constitutional, political and industrial revolution, world records, sporting spectaculars and much partying, dinking, eating, meeting, talking, walking, cycling, riding, boating and sailing. To top it all, it still provides two thirds of the drinking water for the residents of one of the biggest and greatest cities on the planet. Not bad for something that starts out as a trickle of water in the corner of a quiet field in Gloucestershire.
A complete overview of all that has happened to this incredible natural resource is impractical for a site of this nature (at least for the time being) but there is a wealth of information out there on the internet for you to learn about the life, times and history of the River Thames.
The best palce to start is probably the nearest thing to an official site at www.visitthames.co.uk. It's put together by the Envoronment Agency and is an excellent site. It provides a great deal of useful information but please come back to my site when you've had a look! I've got more photos ;-))
You can also try riverthames.co.uk - a simpler but nonetheless good site.
The Thames Path National Trail
The Thames Path is one of 19 officially recognised national trails in the UK. Each trail is designed to offer excellent walking, cycling or riding and they cover over 2000 miles in total. The first trail was the Pennine Way opened in 1965. More information can be found about the National Trails at the Countryside Commission website.
Unlike the other trails, the Thames Path can be accessed very easily via public transport throughout almost the entire length of the river and due to the general nature of rivers (!) it is basically flat, so walking and cycling the path could not be easier. It soaks up fantastic contrasts from quiet, sleepy meadows to steamy, smelly industrial landscapes taking in some of the richest property in the country and many of the world's premier tourist attractions along the way. At around 180 miles, the river path can be walked from start to finish in one to two weeks depending upon your fitness level however it lends itself very well to completion in a series of stages. Alternatively it is ideal as a source of Sunday afternoon strolls with the family and/or dog.
More information can be found about the Thames Path at: nationaltrails.gov.uk. And don't forget - come back here when you're done!