Abingdon Head of River

Abingdon Head of River
The Abingdon Head of the River Rowing event saw nearly 400 boats rowing from Culham Reach, 1850m upstream on the River Thames, to the finish line across from Wilsham Road.
Abingdon Head of River
Head racing takes the form of time trials. Crews set off one at a time and are timed from start to finish. The boats started off in groups of nearly 100 in four divisions.

The first boat from the first division to come in was competing in the Op 8+ event and came in with a time of 7:03, the fastest time all day. Op 8+ means Open 8 rowers + cox (I think). The team was from B T C (Southampton) Rowing.
Abingdon Head of River
The Oxfordshire Lowland Search and Rescue were to be seen along the course to help and keep rowers safe throughout the day.
Abingdon Head of River
After competing crews rowed back to Rye Farm Meadow,
Abingdon Head of River
passing town landmarks like the Old Anchor Inn.
Abingdon Head of River
This is crew 143 from Wallingford Rowing Club in event Op J16 2x, which probably means Open Junior up to age 16 with 2 crew.
Abingdon Head of River
There is a lot involved in getting the boats from the River back to their trailers without bumping into anybody. Stewards guide this as well as the rowing.
Abingdon Head of River
All the oars seem to be kept like a big wigwam near the landing stages.
Abingdon Head of River
Competitors and spectators could then enjoy a BBQ, local beer, tea, cakes and Morris Dancers. There was also the WWII event from yesterday’s post nearby.

The event was organised by Abingdon Rowing Club.

2 Comments April 15, 2019

The Prime Minister (Mr. Winston Churchill) and Dunkirk Evacuees at Abingdon Lock

Abingdon Lock
The Prime Minister (Mr. Winston Churchill), had a magnificent reception today when he paid a visit to Abingdon Lock to help rally members of the local Home Guard. He made a very stirring speech.
Abingdon Lock
Mr Churchill spoke with members of the Home Guard and demonstrated the famous V for Victory sign.
Abingdon Lock
Abingdon lock keeper Mr Richard Hawkins told me it’s all in a day’s work … welcoming the Prime Minister and some soldiers back from Flanders.
Abingdon Lock
A large crowd of Abingdon people had gathered to see Mr Churchill and welcome back the heroes of Dunkirk.
Abingdon Lock
They were bloodied but not beaten.
Abingdon Lock
May Blossom, the sweetheart of the Home Guard, sang some favourites.
Abingdon Lock
Members of the UTP (Upper Thames Patrol) Local Defence Volunteers were also there guarding the River. Mr Churchill did say, in my hearing, that he considers the name UTP Local Defence Volunteers not plain English, and so plans to rename them the UTP Home Guard.
Abingdon Lock
Local people spoke to soldiers evacuated from Flanders who said they were bombed almost the whole way over the channel and it was a miracle so many of them got back alive. It was thanks to a fleet of small boats.
Abingdon Lock
Congratulations to Mr Richard Hawkins (the lock keeper), and assistant keeper Frank Jordan, and to other volunteers, who made this a day to remember.

3 Comments April 14, 2019

Litter Pick by River Thames in Abingdon

Abingdon Poppy Appeal
Volunteers carried out a litter pick along the River Thames in Abingdon today.
Abingdon Poppy Appeal
It was organised by the AbiBinit! the Abingdon Litter Picking Initiative and supported by Abingdon Cuts Plastic and the Kingfisher Canoe Club in conjunction with Surfers Against Sewage.

The event saw 60 people, including children, turning up to tackle the issue of litter along the River Thames.
Abingdon Poppy Appeal
Megan is seen here with her bags of rubbish picked from Culham to Abingdon.
Abingdon Poppy Appeal
Rubbish collected included seven traffic cones, three bicycles, a shopping trolley, a street lamp, 96 glass bottles, 13 bags of plastic waste, 75 bags of general waste, and fly tipping – lots of it!.

Events like this raise awareness about how much plastic and other harmful rubbish end up in the River Thames and along it’s banks. Bin it!

There is a McDonald’s Litter Pick for young people tomorrow.

1 Comment April 13, 2019

Abingdon Poppy Appeal smashes £50,000

Thankyou to Clare for this press release from a few days ago. I have reused pictures from the blog post on 27th October 2018 . There was a chance to take more pictures on Thursday when volunteers got together which I did not make.
Abingdon Poppy Appeal
Big-hearted Abingdon folk raised more than £50,000 for the Poppy Appeal last year — a 16 per cent increase and equivalent to more than £1 for every person in the town.

Official figures show that the town has donated £52,545, an increase of £7,196 on the previous year.

The generosity of people was astounding with more than £15,000 in notes alone being dropped into one of the 364 collection tins. They also tapped their way to a further £1,000 on a contactless machine.
Abingdon Poppy Appeal
Highlights of the two-week collection saw the the Army Cadets smash through the £10,000 donation barrier, while a single collector raised almost £4,000.

But the really big story was the fundraising at Tesco Extra Abingdon where the team of collectors with their “poppy shop” in the store foyer raised £17,368 – more than £4,000 up on the previous year. A further £500 came in from collection tins at the end of tills.
Abingdon Poppy Appeal
The Appeal was given its own Abingdon launch with MG owners in poppy red cars parked on the Market Place, while Abingdon Lions took on the task of distributing boxes in the town centre.

Clare Oldfield, Poppy Appeal Organiser, says: ‘Ten years ago Abingdon raised £20,793 for the Poppy. Over the past two years the poppy collectors have raised almost £100,000.

Abingdon may not be the biggest town on the Thames but it must surely have the biggest heart. The amount raised is truly amazing and something the town and its poppy collectors should be rightly proud of.’

Leave a Comment April 13, 2019

A New Bar

Thankyou to Peter for this piece.
A New Bar
A new bar, Tipsy Mercer, has just opened in Ock Street.
A New Bar
It is run by Henrietta and James, ably assisted by Brittany. James has fitted out the bar himself.
A New Bar
The wooden table tops came from Blenheim and he made the supports and wine glass racks from copper central heating tubes! Both floors have been restored in the very fashionable shabby chic style, like the remarkable Wilton Music Hall in London.
A New Bar
It was once Beesley, outfitters and mercers, which is where the name came from. Before cars were popular, they made deliveries in their 1908 De Dion van.
A New Bar
A smart, fashionable addition to Abingdon.

(Apologies to the Tipsy Mercer I did not report this sooner as they have been open for a couple of weeks. The Herald has done a couple of good reports. For more about Beesley’s see The town portal historical people section. )

2 Comments April 11, 2019

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