Thursday, 24 February 2011

Pangbourne-on-Thames, Berkshire


I thought I would only do one English blog per month during my exile here(!), but I want to reduce the backlog of UK stories I have, before I return to the promised land! So there will be a couple more before the end of March.......

A few weeks ago, I met up with a school friend in Pangbourne for lunch. It was great catching up with all the news and then afterwards we took a walk around the village.

The village is first mentioned in a Saxon charter of 844AD, as Peagingaburnum meaning ‘the streams of Paegas people’. Pangbourne is now quite a large (and wealthy) village in the county of Berkshire, with the River Pang flowing through its centre,  before it joins the nearby River Thames. Like Goring, on which I did a blog late last year, Pangbourne is in the London commuter belt and is well served by main line trains into the capital. It had been raining all morning, so everything was fairly wet, but I was keen to have a look at the Thames  itself.
 
On our way there we walked under the railway bridge (trains to London) and on the right was a fish and chip shop!  
 
 On arrival at the river, we saw an Egyptian Goose strutting around close by, and showing us how beautiful he was.

Next came the swans, mother and two cygnets; sadly, we had no bread for them, so they were not very impressed!


Reflections on the water.

From here, we walked back into the village and discovered the Parish Church of St James the Less. Apparently it is one of only 26 churches in England which is dedicated to St James the Less. The present church was built in 1866 and it is said to be certainly the second, if not the third, church built on this site. The tower is a surviving part of earlier buildings  and was erected in 1718. The peal of 6 bells was cast in 1720 and they are still rung every Sunday. The interior is wonderfully preserved (see below).
I collected this information from the parish pamphlet, but for further reading see HERE.

 




68 comments:

  1. What a lovely Church is this that is dedicated to St. James the Less!!! Honestly, you don't need to apologize about posting about UK sites - it is such a lovely country and you give such wonderful overviews. I just love reading your posts and feel as if I am walking along side you! Thanks so much!
    Blessings!
    Ann

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  2. Anne thanks for your kind comments. I have to admit to never having heard of St. James the Less before!!!! I am learning so much from my own posts!! Take care, Diane

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  3. All wonderful photos, Diane. I can't quite figure out which I like best. I love swans but the reflections on water and the church interior are magnificent.

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  4. Thanks Joyful, I have to say I love the one with the reflection on the green water. Diane

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  5. Dear Diane, hi
    What beautiful photos !!!
    I like so much this trip with you !
    Learn lots of information, thank you very mucη !!!
    Greetings

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  6. I always enjoy dropping by your lovely site - so informative. This is the first time I've seen an egyptian goose - he's so very colourful, almost like a painting.
    Have a lovely week-end!
    "All Things French"

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  7. Oh yes back to the Promised Land :-) not long now .. it must feel like being a prisoner .. ha ha ha .. The Great Escape !!

    I used to go to Pangbourne quiet a bit back in the 80's when I lived at Raf Benson .. also used to go to Henley . and a few other villages around there.

    Will let you know about next week, after tomorrows work. xo Take care and hope you get your tooth sorted.

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  8. I am not big on going to church... but I love churches.. the buildings, the windows... those amazing alters and such... the church is fab, Diane. Another village I did not know and what a long history! I also have never seen that variety of goose before, are they terribly rare???

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  9. How gorgeous and green your images are! It would be so lovely to be up close with those cute little ducks. It also would have been fun to catch up with your friend.

    Ps. I love reading your stories, whether they are set in the UK/France. Both places are beautiful and unique; and far more interesting than Australia..

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  10. Magda, thank you and it is a pleasure. I also learn a lot from my posts looking up information :-) Diane

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  11. Dianne, the Egyptian Goose was remarkably tame and I could walk up fairly close to him. They probably get fed being by the river. Diane

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  12. Anne the weather today turned out to be not too bad, let us hope that next week will be OK. Looking forward to the trip. Not though looking forward to Monday at the dentist! Diane

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  13. lostpastremembered the Egyptian Goose is not rare to my knowledge, I have seen plenty around in S.Africa and quite a few here. I also love church buildings and windows but I admit to not going very often! Diane

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  14. Brittany there is so much more ancient history in Europe which is of interest but there must be Aboriginal history in Australia?
    My friend and I have always been in touch over all the years we have known each other and since we moved back to Europe we try to see each other as often as possible. We have known each other since we were about 12 years old! Diane

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  15. They are lovely photos, one and all, Dianne. Those of reflections on the water are stunners. I would love to hear the church bells in the old tower ring. That is a wonderful way to connect the past to the present. There is such a sense of permanence about the villages you show us. I hope you have a great day. Blessings...Mary

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  16. How nice to get out and about with a friend. It's nice to see the area around where you are Now. So many amazing churches. Saw an Egyptian goose in Kruger. Hope all is well.

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  17. Mary I also love those reflections. We heard church bells ringing at Avebury a couple of weeks ago and it was quite amazing listening to them. Take care. Diane

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  18. Gaelyn we have known each for what seems like forever so it is really good to catch up with each other from time to time. The churches in France and the UK are all pretty stunning and most of a long history attached to them. I love gypos as we used to call them in S.Africa. Diane

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  19. This is a fantastic report and photos. You know how I feel about roofs. What an amazing colour that roof has.

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  20. Olga I had not even noticed the roof LOL, just looked at it now and you are so right, it is a beautiful colour :) Diane

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  21. There is some beautiful places in the UK, but to live there is far to expensive for me, I think thats why many of us live in France, we would love to live this life we live in the UK, but living here in France is a more than acceptable substitute.

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  22. I have missed my visits..I so enjoy seeing everything..I am going to look at the other blog you put up, before I have trouble with this computer..and to think..my son-in-law is a computer programmer..I am waiting for him to help me out. At least I got here today..Have a good day..

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  23. Anther great post! I especially love the reflection photos.

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  24. Such lovely pictures! Just looking at them is infusing me with a sense of peace. I especially love the ones of the Parish Church.

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  25. Paul and Roz, I could not agree more. The quicker we make the final move to France the better we certainly cannot afford to retire in the UK. Apart from anything else it is much warmer in the Charente and we have the best French neighbours in the world. Here we have neighbours who are noisy and sit at home all day on the dole! Role on retirement :-) Diane

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  26. Rosebud Collection, glad you managed to make it here :) Hope your son-in-law soon sorts out all your problems. Diane

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  27. jennaseverythingblog, thank you so much for your visit and your very kind comments. Love your blog as well. Hope to see you back. take care. Diane

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  28. I think you are quite enjoying researching and writing these posts Diane. I am certainly enjoying reading them and learning little tit bits of interesting information. today I learnt what an Egyptian Goose looks like amongst other things. :)

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  29. Egyptian Geese are gorgeous! Love the reflections on the river and the beautiful church too.

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  30. Lindy I am enjoying the research, I have learnt so much since I started blogging! I am just glad that other people are enjoying the posts as well. Take care Diane

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  31. Thanks JM, I also love Egyptian geese they are very attractive birds.Diane

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  32. I have to say that I would enjoy both England and France. Lucky you! This looks like a great (albeit wet) day with a good school friend.

    Velva

    P.S. I think the duck is beautiful. I have not seen ducks like that, here in the U.S..

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  33. Ryan was talking about cathedrals just last night, so I'll have to bring him in and show him your wonderful pictures! St. James the Less indeed! I wouldn't like to be called "The Less"! It's funny how names evolve, isn't it?

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  34. That is such a beautiful church!

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  35. Another beautiful tour you have shared to us!

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  36. Velva we were lucky that that the rain eased off enough to allow us to walk around. That duck by the way is a Goose LOL. Diane

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  37. Margie I agree 'the less' is not the best name to have. I had never heard of it before visiting Pangbourne I must admit! Diane

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  38. Your right Peggy it was a beautiful church, there are so many of them around in the UK and France. Diane

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  39. "The promised land" - what a great expression. It rings so true....we have a few more weeks to wait yet.
    Fascinating post and great photos. The one of the reflections is beautiful. So cold with the bare trees and the still water - could only be in February I think.

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  40. Jean you are right those bare trees have to be February even the water looks cold which I am sure it was!!! See you :) Diane

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  41. I was so glad to see this post living as I do so near to Pangbourne. In the summer I drive through it every day on my way to work. I love to actually get some time to look around it on weekends when I can. I have never looked inside the church before though so found the photos really useful/good. I hope you have a lovely weekend. :-)

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  42. When I read your posts, I feel I am on the tour with you to those places. Your photos are so artistically taken. Thanks Diane.

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  43. Froggy it really is a lovely church and worth taking a walk to it. It is quite beautiful inside. You must though have some lovely churches in Reading. You have a good weekend as well. Take care Diane x

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  44. Quay Po Cooks, thanks for the very kind comments. Glad you enjoyed the walk about :) Diane

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  45. I wouldn't have known where to look to find so many wonderful pictures and history bits. Thank you so much.

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  46. rosaria, I did not really look for them, they just found me! There are so many historic places both in the UK and France that it is hard to go far without finding somewhere interesting and historic. Diane

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  47. Dentist on Monday? Ugg, not my favorite thing to do.
    Love the urn down by the lake - nice spot for a picnic - and I am sure the water fowl would consider themselves invited.
    An interesting way to distinguish someone from another with the same name - the less.
    America is just too young to have the numerous lovely villages that Europe has. Not all but many of our older structures were not made with durable materials, and in many areas we tear down what is deemed old and put up something trendy. We can't get it right, so I will just enjoy your pictures.

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  48. Mya this trip is one I am not looking forward to. It is a tooth that has given me endless problems and pain and now they are going to cap it!!!
    All the very old buildings in the UK are listed so if you should buy a listed house you would probably not be able to make any changes to the exterior and if you wish to alter, extend or demolish it in a way that affects its character as a building of special interest, you must first obtain Listed Building Consent from your local planning authority. Diane

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  49. gorgeous photos!
    just love that church!!! so many beautiful details!
    happy wk,
    Rosa

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  50. Your posts are always fun whether they are in France or the UK. I had never seen an Egyptian goose – it has a peculiar look. I also enjoyed your post on Stonehenge. But what I enjoyed the most I must confess was your photo of “le plat de fromages” in an earlier post. I am a cheese addict and miss my French cheese a lot. When I go to my cousin in France she always has a huge selection of cheese ready for me – with a couple of good wines on the side – and she knows that is all I need to keep me happy. Thanks for coming to my blog while I was away.

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  51. We have a church in the neighbouring village of Stowe by Chartley which is also dedicated to St James the Less.
    The church in our village is dedicated to St James the Great (as incidently was our house, as it used to be a church school!)
    Keep the posts coming Diane, they are always interesting with such superb photographs.

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  52. Rosa, thank you for you kind comments. The church was lovely and the stained glass windows very special - I should have taken more photos!! Diane

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  53. Vagabonde we are also cheese fans in a big way, I don't think there is a cheese I don't like, but there are of course ones that I prefer. I try not to buy too often, as not only can I not stop eating it, but I watch the scales tip madly in the wrong direction :( As it is I am still trying to get off the Christmas extra that went on around the middle!!!
    Thank you for the lovely comments. Diane

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  54. GaynorB, interesting that you have a 'great' and a 'less' close by. Thanks for following. Diane

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  55. Great pics in this article!
    I was so busy with my toads that I missed it!!
    I just realized I wasn't yet a "follower!!
    so here I am!! :)

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  56. Thanks Noushka, thanks for being a follower :) I can imagine how busy your toads kept you LOL. Diane x

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  57. Merci Diane pour nous avoir présenté cette belle promenade.J'ai particulièrement aimé les cygnes de Sa Majesté et la magnifique Ouette d'Egypte.

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  58. MercivLucie pour vos commentaires. J'aime aussi la Ouette d'Egypte. Diane

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  59. How lovely to revisit Pangbourne by reading your post. I have walked the Thames around here (Reading to Goring) a few times, and love the countryside. And these old churches are such treasures. i hadn't been in this one so appreciate your good photographs of the interior. Well done!

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  60. Dolly, Glad you enjoyed your vist and saw something you have not seen before. You must have walked miles around England over the years, have you ever kept track? :) Diane

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  61. Yes, I have walked some amazing distances. i don't have one of those gadgets that keep track of the miles you walk it's never occured to me actually. But I have a vague idea of miles walked as I usually have a National Trail Guide with me for the longer projects. There is nothing like seeing a country this way :-)

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  62. Diane, I was always amazed by the places you visited. And thanking you for taking us along. I am so blessed to be here. Thanks for sharing such a wonderful post.
    Blessings, Kristy

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  63. Dolly it would be interesting if you did a post telling us about some of you walks and just how far you think you have walked over the years. Diane

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  64. Kristy I am glad that you enjoy the tours, I always enjoy sharing them :) Dciane

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  65. Hi Diane, funny you should say that. I have some draft posts on my Thames Walk project (source to the Thames Barrier) that need tidying up...but I seem to have got sidetracked with my 5 Minute from my Door Series! Always something to distract me!

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  66. Dolly looking forward to seeing the drafts becoming reality :-) Diane

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