Monday, 28 September 2020

Our river launch is perfect for summer picnicking

Our river launch is perfect for summer picnicking

THE tinkle of glasses and the sounds of laughter drift across the river, writes Alan Howard.

How still the water is in the late evening. We are tied up to a handy tree.

A heron stands motionless only a few yards away.

A large Hobbs cruiser comes past, its jazz band fading as it goes by. The heron has gone.

We pack up the picnic, get ready to go and realise at this time we will have to work the lock ourselves.

We find a spot on the booms and tie on. Only open launches are allowed to moor on the booms in the middle of the river. You can’t be closer than this to the straining rowers of Henley Regatta.

The kids need an urgent stop ashore. We look for a sandy bank and push the bow gently in.

The boat grounds gently on the shingle and the kids scramble over the bow to land.

The family wants to visit the Thames Barrier. The boat is capable but Dad needs to do some research with the Port of London Authority.

Ice cream anyone?

Maybe a trip to Lechlade would be more comfortable!

Contact: Alan Howard, Ledard, 8 Rotherfield Road, Henley, RG9 1NN. Telephone: 07816 767651. Email:

On the River