The Winchester

"Not all those who wander are lost" – Tolkien

“Going Fishing”

with 3 comments

February 2011

Sporting waders regularly invites an inquisition from the public as to our immediate intentions. What are you doing? Where are you going? Where have you been? What’s down there? The Police have asked us what we’re doing, sometimes putting answers in our mouths. “Going Fishing?”, “Yes Officer!”.

I’d identified an infall in Reading and went to take a look with Neb. As far as we were aware, this culvert had sat under the radar for long enough and even if it was shit, we had to take a look and at least find out. Down past a wier, gingerly testing the water level in case of breach, we made our way down the wide channel towards a corner, where we found another wier.

Along the way, a sewage pipe emerged from the wall and ran the length of the passage, disappearing into the wall again towards the end. The wier at the kink appeared to have collected several items, shopping trolleys, tree branches and a kayak, amongst others.

The water got a little deep here, probably manageable in chest-high waders but I wasn’t wearing those today. I’d like to take an inflatable boat down the river with me, taking in some of Reading’s other watercourses too. Holy Brook stretches for a couple of kilometers and although not as open, offers a cosy excursion for those who can be bothered.

Naming rights dictate that we could name this culvert, so in honour of all those unsuspecting folk who wonder what we’re doing in a shopping centre lift with waders on, “Going Fishing” was the best answer.

Written by Winch

February 14th, 2011 at 9:07 am

Posted in Drains

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3 Responses to '“Going Fishing”'

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  1. I think I’ve been down here, is that the bit at the west end of the Oracle? Near ‘Jamies’


    14 Mar 13 at 3:37 pm

  2. That’s the one, a pretty uninspiring space but one that exists and you can go in quite easily.


    15 Mar 13 at 10:09 pm

  3. I think it is actually the culverted remains off the leat of Reading town mill. Bridge Street was roignally called 7 bridges street and as well as the town mill (flour mill) river ran in several channel across gravel beds where the sheeps fleeces were pegged out to be washed. Remember reading all about it when they were excavating the original Oracle under where Lakeland plastics is now before they built the oracle.


    26 Mar 14 at 4:22 pm

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