David Sharp & Graham Corneck RIP

There are two Thames obituaries on The Guardian today.

The daughter of David Sharp writes about her father and his campaign for the Thames Path.

On the same page the daughter of Graham Corneck recalls her father as incumbent of St Nicholas Church at Deptford Green.

The ancient riverside parish is where the lighthouse authority Trinity House was founded. St Nicholas’s churchyard contains the body of Christopher Marlowe and I can remember seeing Canon Corneck presiding dramatically over a crowded gathering on the anniversary of the playwright’s baptism on 26 February.

The Vicar was also instrumental in involving the local MP Dame Joan Ruddock in the campaign for the Peter the Great statue at the Deptford Creek entrance.

Swan Upping

The scarlet coated Queen’s Swan Marker and the accompanying Swan Uppers of the Vintners’ and Dyers’ Livery Companies will arrive in six rowing skiffs at Henley for lunch today, Wednesday 22 July.

They set out from Marlow this morning having started the week at Sunbury. Tonight they reach George Clooney’s new home village, Sonning.

Tomorrow they can be seen going through Reading for an overnight stop at Moulsford. The final destination is Abingdon on Friday.

Swan ownership is shared by the Queen with the Vintners’ and Dyers’. Swan Upping is the annual count.


Nine Elms bridge proposals: No loss of path or trees

Plans have been released for a new pedestrian bridge linking Pimlico with Nine Elms.

The pending arrival of the American Embassy and massive redevelopment between the Waterloo railway line and Nine Elms Lane has led to this initiative supported by Wandsworth Council.

The landing for the bridge will be the riverside St George’s Gardens in front of St George’s Square on the Pimlico bank.

On the ‘south’ side it is between blocks of flats on Elm Quay where there is open space opposite Ponton Road/Nine Elms Lane junction.

Where the crossing differs from the controversial upstream Garden Bridge proposal is that Wandsworth has ensured that the loss of open space is kept to a minimum. The Garden Bridge requires the felling of trees and removal of grass. On Nine Elms bank there will be no loss of trees or grass.

Cyclists will be allowed to use the bridge.

Four designs have been shortlisted. A competition panel will choose one to go before the planning committee.

The proposals can be seen today until 7.30pm The Gallery on the Corner, 155 Battersea Park Road SW8 4BU. On Thursday 23 and Friday 24 July the designs and maps are in the Hyde Park Room, Regus Building, 8 Floor, 50 Broadway, SW1H 0RG from 9.30am to 6pm.

Syon 600

This Thursday 23 July is the feast day of St Bridget of Sweden who founded the Bridgettine Order.

Its English house opened on the banks of the River Thames at Syon in 1415 thanks to Henry V who was about to leave for France and the Battle of Agincourt.

The site is now occupied by Syon House which is the London home of the Duke of Northumberland. The location of the vast abbey church has been outlined on the edge of the tide meadow visible from the towpwath and Kew Gardens.

The convent is unique for it was not dissolved when evicted by Henry VIII. Instead the community went abroad to Portugal until safer times. These came in 1861 when the abbey relocated to Devon where its dissolution only came in 2011. Three sisters survive living independently.

The 600th anniversary of the abbey’s foundation was marked on Sunday 19 July with an outdoor ecumenical service attended by Cardinal Vincent Nichols, the Duke of Northumberland and Bridgettine sisters from other houses.