In A Little Town Called Newbridge


NewBridge

A summer day spent in this town is worth the exploration. Newbridge is a chilled place, where you can unwind, forget about the troubles of life and bask in the transient British sunshine. You save so much money by chilling out in your own country, especially for a day excursion - it really is a no brainer. Get yourself to Newbridge this summer.


The main feature of this town is the bridge, as well as the traditional British cottages that surround it. There is clearly more to Oxfordshire than the University. I was so glad to have explored this area. The surrounding countryside is quite refreshing, especially when coming from the concrete jungle of Greater London.


Our Venture To Newbridge

In April 2017, I ventured here with my friend as part of a birthday treat. NewBridge in Oxfordshire, has the oldest functional bridge over the river Thames. To me, it should really be called Old Bridge (but what do I know). I was quite curious of this place and was eager to explore. However, after driving for an hour I was disappointed to find a dried-out river bed with grounded boats. No water, no scenic views, this just couldn't be right.


As interesting as the dried riverbed was, this was not what we had come to see. We wanted to see freshwater and beautiful countryside.


We decided not to give up and walked further down the bridge on the opposing side. Fortunately the river had not dried up, but was no longer as wide as it was in the past. This is what we saw. The trip was no longer in vain.


Here is another angle from the bridge.


What's Available

  • This pretty much is a gastro pub area in terms of food. The drinks served are pretty much regular soft drinks, beers and wines

  • Benches to chill, making it a great place to relax in the heat

  • Boats for hire - I recommend the pedal boats. As it's cheaper, it doesn't blow out and as me and my sister proved, it is a lot faster than the powered boats (at least before we ran out of steam)

  • A free car park but arrive early to avoid disappointment

  • Clean air


Riding On The Thames

Riding on the Thames was a peaceful experience. The water was calm, the sun was shining and it was a soothing experience. As much as I wanted to be mischievous, I had my camera with me so I didn't try anything too reckless. It was also like meditation riding along the water, there is something soothing about it. The trickiest part was really getting on and off the boat.


There were some amazing sites along the way. Additionally, I must have lost a few calories with all the effort needed to position the boat.


This is the moment we decided to race the electric motorised boat. Two sets of legs was victorious over the motor, that was until we ran out of steam. You can see the looks of joy as our competitors passed us by.


The boats on offer are either a pedal powered boat or an electric. It's a good workout if you pedal, top speed exceeds the electric motor and of course it is more reliable.

We did note a stranded electric boat due to engine failure. It is also cheaper to pedal as we paid £16 instead of £20.

To steer is pretty simple though it did take a while to adjust to the rudder and the pull of the current.

I was only able to get these shots because I had a co-pilot. If you do plan to take pictures, be mindful you don't crash from the current or fall out, which is quite easy to do if you lose balance.

Cottage

The houses in this region (NewBridge) are awesome. Very traditional cottages that have the authentic British cottage appeal. Here are some we came across.

Things I liked

  • Floating on the clean version of the Thames in a boat away from the dirty London Thames water

  • The landscape and country scenery

  • The fresh air

  • The peaceful sound of hearing only nature

  • Relatively inexpensive

  • The bridge is unique and a blast from the less known past

Drawbacks


  • The main difficulty is the lack of cashpoints in the area. To get cash, we had to drive a few miles to a nearby town.

  • You can't ride on the boats without paying in cash. I noticed a lot of potential customers disappointed due to not having cash.

  • There is a lack of cuisine to choose from. You are served by two pubs only. If you are used to choice, this may be a problem.

To Conclude

Newbridge was a pleasant surprise to explore. I enjoyed driving down, the company that I went with and what I experienced when I visited. I would have preferred more cash points or everyone taking card payments; but to be fair is that something really to set you back when you can get cash before leaving? I think it is worth it purely to see a section of the Thames river that is not as foul as the part in London. It is definitely clean enough to swim in and not catch 101 diseases.

Thank you for reading, please feel free to comment below or ask a question.

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Croydon Photographer Blaqpix@gmail.com © 2017 by Christopher Bovell.