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The Thames

Funeral Procession

Lord Nelson died on board the HMS Victory during the Battle of Trafalgar and was given a state funeral. His body was taken up the Thames in a huge river procession to St Paul's Cathedral where he was buried.


Three miles south east of Windsor, on the banks of the river Thames, is the famous meadow of Runnymede. It was here in 1215 that King John signed Magna Carta.

Tea Trade

The London tea trade has, for many generations, taken place on both sides of the Thames close to London Bridge. Unloading ships, marketing, blending and packing have all happened in this area.

Boat Race

Every spring sees Oxford University Boat Club and Cambridge University Boat Club thrashing it out on the water to win the now legendary boat race. The course covers four miles and 374 yards of the river Thames, starting at Putney Bridge and finishing at Chiswick Bridge.

Tilbury Docks

The steamship Empire Windrush brought the first generation of migrant workers from the Caribbean to England. It eventually docked at Tilbury in Essex on June 22 1948. Tilbury is located on the north bank of the river Thames at the point where it narrows to about 2,400 feet (732 metres) in width.

Thames Tunnel

The Brunel Museum organises floodlit tours of Marc Brunel's Thames Tunnel aboard east London line Tube trains. It was the first tunnel to be built under a river anywhere in the world.

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My favourite Icon of England has to be the Cornish Pasty.

Ian Baldry