Thames Crossings

The River Thames has run softly through Piers Plowright's largely unplanned life. In this five-part series, he visits different points along its course where his life has crossed the great river.

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Episodes

EpisodeTitleFirst
Broadcast
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01Beginnings2013042920140915

In this first programme he seeks out the river's source in a dry field in Gloucestershire and finds his way, meanderingly, to Lechlade, where he spent family holidays as a child. Along the route, he meets people who spend their lives by the river - and takes the occasional dip.

Produced by Alan Hall.

A Falling Tree production for BBC Radio 4.

Episode 1 (of 5): Beginnings

In this first programme he seeks out the river's source in a dry field in Gloucestershire and finds his way, meanderingly, to Lechlade, where he spent family holidays as a child. Along the route, he meets people who spend their lives by the river - and takes the occasional dip.

02Learning2013043020140916

Episode 2 (of 5): Learning

In today's programme he returns to Oxford where, fifty years ago, he studied history. He swims in his favourite spot at Port Meadow, meets a retired boat builder and talks to Sarah, the lock-keeper at Godstow.

Produced by Alan Hall

A Falling Tree production for BBC Radio 4.

Learning

03Pilgrimage2013050120140917

Episode 3 (of 5): Pilgrimage

In this programme, Piers visits Ewelme, a small village in the scoop of the Chiltern Hills where his sister is buried across the way from Jerome K Jerome.

Produced by Alan Hall

A Falling Tree production for BBC Radio 4.

Episode 2 (of 5): Pilgrimage

The River Thames has run softly through Piers Plowight's largely unplanned life. In this five-part series, he visits different points along its course where his life has crossed the great river.

04Words And Flesh2013050220140918

Episode 4 (of 5): Words and Flesh

Piers' journey brings him to Cookham and Maidenhead, where he views the river through the work of his favourite artist, the painter Stanley Spencer, and explores the town's racy reputation: 'Are you married or are you from Maidenhead?'

Producer by Alan Hall

A Falling Tree production for BBC Radio 4.

05 LASTThe Boat Is Waiting2013050320140919

Episode 5 (of 5): The Boat is Waiting

Piers' pilgrimage along the river reaches its conclusion in south-west London, where the Thames becomes tidal and where he lived with his young family. He visits Eel Pie Island and meets Walter De La Mare's grandson.

Produced by Alan Hall

A Falling Tree production for BBC Radio 4.