Bulls Bridge to Kingston-Upon-Thames

Steve trips 2 Comments

Today we completed our time on the Grand Union Canal and joined the river Thames. Travelling from Bulls Bridge to Kingston-Upon-Thames

Grand Union Canal – Canal and River Trust

Another bright and sunny morning greeted us as we started on our way to the Hanwell flight of 8 locks. Our arrival at the first lock didn’t exactly showcase the route ahead. The entrance to the first lock was through a morass of rubbish.

hanwell rubbish

After that though, it was a pleasant descent with the flight being next to the wall of the old Ealing Lunatic Asylum.

Built in to the wall, was a small door which in the event of a fire could be used to pass hoses through and use the water from the canal.

The route continued to be quite rural in appearance  as we continued our approach to Brentford. Passing the offices of GSK there were a series of sculptures each one being of a different nautical knot.

knot sculpture

We moored up for a lunch break close to the Gauging locks in Brentford. I also checked the weed hatch to make sure there was no rubbish wrapped around the propeller before we hit the tidal river. (Thanks for the advice Sue)

Tidal River Thames – Port of London Authority

After passing through the Gauging locks we had a short section before we arrived at Thames Lock for our 2:15 booking. The only other boat was a single hander who was heading for Bristol. We agreed to stay together for the tidal section, just in case one of us had a problem.

entering Thames

We were quickly through the Lock and after a few hundred yards we made the right turn on to the Thames. Our booking had been made so that we would have the current in our favour for the 5  miles to Teddington Lock and the end of the tidal section. Happily the conditions were quite benign with just a light breeze and there was very little river traffic. In fact it was about 45 minutes before we saw another boat.

Teddington Lock

All this meant that we had the chance to enjoy the journey and take in the scenery. All in all, it was far less stressful than our 5 minutes of tidal river between Denver and Salter’s Lode a month ago.

River Thames – Environment Agency

Now on Environment Agency waters, we continued on for a couple of miles before mooring up for the night at Kingston-Upon-Thames. Here we managed to get a nice quiet spot across from the town. We are very close to the boundary of  Hampton Court and whilst out walking found that we could walk around some of the grounds. Our plan is to explore further tomorrow. A free alternative to the £23 a head charge of full entry.

moored at Kingston

After so many nights of mooring in the countryside, tonight we found ourselves just watching the world go by.

13.5 miles

13 locks


222 miles

181 locks

1 tunnel

3 swing bridges

Comments 2

  1. So pleased you enjoyed your trip up the tideway. If you walk back to the bridge and turn left at the road you will find the entrance to Hampton Court a little further along beside the pub. Good walk through there down to Long Water (check out google images)

    1. Post

      Thanks for that. We went in at Surbiton Gate last night and came out where you mention.
      The walk you describe was just what we had in mind. We couldn’t resist when the notice board described long water as a canal !

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