As many of you will know,  we have recently moved to the Medieval City of Salisbury.  This City has many photo-opportunities not least of all the fabulous Cathedral Church of the Blessed Virgin Mary, construction of which commenced in the year 1220 and opened 100 years later in 1320.


A Winter Portrait of Salisbury Cathedral

This is a  view of the north elevation of Salisbury Cathedral.  Evidence of restoration work can be seen to the eastern end of the Cathedral.

cathedral-hdr-edit-aSunset lights up the western face of the Cathedral Spire

A late afternoon image with the final rays of the sun lighting up the 123m high Cathedral Spire.


The Great West Door and Cathedral Spire in Evening Sunlight

Dusk is falling and the rays of the sun will soon disappear.  The beautiful west elevation was believed to have been influenced by the earlier Wells Cathedral in Somerset.


The Ancient Ceremony of Swan Upping

For the last nine centuries, during the third week in July, the ancient ceremony of Swan Upping has taken place on the River Thames.


The Flotilla approaches Marlow

Queen Elizabeth II as Sovereign is the official Seigneur of the Swans, which means she is the owner of all unmarked swans on Britain’s open waters.  However this right is now only exercised on the River Thames.


The Queen’s Swan Marker David Barber MVO approaches Marlow

There are now only three other owners of swans in the United Kingdom apart from the Sovereign, the Ilchester Family who own the swan colony at Abbotsbury, Dorset and two City Livery Companies, the Worshipful Company of Vintners and the Worshipful Company of Dyers.

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Cllr.Suzanne Brown, former Mayor of Marlow, catches a lift in a Dyers skiff

The Vintners and the Dyers provide crews of Swan Uppers to join the crew representing the Queen under the command of the Queen’s Swan Marker –  David Barber MVO, who has held the appointment since 1993.


The Queens Swan Marker enjoying a well earned pint at the Two Brewers

This year the ceremony commenced at 9am on Monday 18th July at Sunbury Lock and ended at around 5pm  on 20th July at Abingdon Bridge, a distance on the river of around 80 miles. Traditional skiffs are used  each containing a helmsman and a number of oarsman.


The Flotilla in Hurley Lock

The crews are distinguishable by their uniforms. The Queen’s Swan Uppers ware red shirts with the royal crest embroidered on the front, The Vintners where navy blue shirts and the Dyers where white shirts. All have white trousers and white sailing shoes.


The Skiff Crews work together to Corral the Swans

These days the Swan Uppers only check families of swans with cygnets.  These are rounded up  and corralled by the boat crews and once captured taken on shore to be health checked and ringed.  Once this is done they are released back on the river.


Captured Swans are taken on to the River Bank for a  Medical Check and Ringing

On Tuesday evening at around 5.30pm the flotilla moored for the night at Marlow Bridge where the crews enjoyed a well earned glass of ale at the Two Brewers, the pub where Jerome K. Jerome wrote part of his famous book “Three Men in a Boat”.  This evening is always very popular with the people of Marlow and attended by the Mayor of Marlow and Town Councillors.


Family of Swans released back into the River

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Sunday 31st July 2016.

Having woken early this morning I decided to get up and head to the river in the hope of finding a spectacular sunrise.

These are two of my captures made between 5.15am and 6.15am.


Dawn over Marlow Bridge

This is a quiet and peaceful time on the River Bank with only the river birds for company, OH!! and the very loud snoring coming from one of the boats moored for the night.


Sunrise seen from the Compleat Angler

Yes – that’s how you spell it.

July on the River Thames

Here are two images from yesterday’s walk along the north bank of the River Thames.


The Church on the River

This is my new portrait of All Saints Church, Bisham.  The tower dates from around 1175 although the rest of the church was added in the 15th century.  The chalk and flint stone used in its construction makes the tower stand out and looking bright in all light conditions


Moorings full at Marlow

Like the town’s car parks, moorings along the Buckinghamshire bank of the River Thames at Marlow are full.  Boats are allowed here to moor overnight of a small fee and have easy access into Marlow town centre.

Prints of my images are available on my “shop” site  at: –  Further images of Marlow cam be found on my principal web site at: –