A pictorial guide to the River Thames


Height above sea level: 67.50 metres
Click to see a map of this area.
Use the aerial photograph option on the map page.

Radcot was the site of two battles - one in 1387 when Henry Bolingbroke (who became Henry IV) defeated the Earl of Oxford, and the other in 1645 during the Civil War when Prince Rupert's men fought off the Parliamentarians.

The Thames at Radcot divides briefly into two channels. The navigable part of the river flows under the newer of two bridges. The other channel flows under the oldest bridge on the Thames.

New Radcot Bridge
Old Radcot Bridge
oldest surviving bridge on the Thames.

Both Radcot Bridges are a narrow single-track road controlled by traffic lights.

Radcot Bridge originally had three Gothic arches ribbed beneath like a cathedral roof. The middle arch, however, is now rounded having been dismantled in 1388 by Henry Bolingbroke as a trap to catch royal favourite Robert de Vere, who was galloping south-west from Oxford on his way to support Richard II against Henry.


The stone for the bridge was quarried at Taynton, just ten miles away, which also provided building material for Oxford's colleges, Windsor Castle and St Paul's Cathedral in London. Radcot was the wharf from which the local Taynton stone was sent by barge downstream to Oxford and London.

The Thames continues winding its way through open meadows, past the remains of Godstow Abbey on the way to Oxford.

Start of Voyage down the Thames Contents Page Introduction
Facts about the Thames Flooding Thames Basin
Pollution Erosion Tributaries
email© Copyright - please read
All the materials on these pages are free for homework and classroom use only. You may not redistribute, sell or place the content of this page on any other website or blog without written permission from the author Mandy Barrow.

©Copyright Mandy Barrow 2013

Follow me on Twitter @mbarrow


I teach computers at The Granville School and St. John's Primary School in Sevenoaks Kent.