River Thames (dark river)


River Thames between Sonning and Wargrave
from Rocque's map of Berkshire, 1761

Known as the 'dark river', and to the  Romans as 'Tamesis' the Thames is the most important river in England, flowing eastwards from the Cotswolds, through London, and to Tilbury where it empties into the sea. It passes through six counties, and for much of its length forms a boundary between Berkshire and Oxfordshire.

The River Loddon, after flowing through the parishes of Hurst and Sonning, empties into the Thames between Sonning and Wargrave.

Though navigable for centuries by small boat, it was made fully navigable to Oxford and beyond for barges by 1624. Locks were added at Staines in 1771 and this improved the water flow.

References in main text:

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