Monday, 12 September 2011

man swims, press grounded

A late start at work allowed me to wander down to the Thames to see David Walliams swim past on the ebbing tide:

To be honest there wasn't much to see - a dot surrounded by support boats; it's the human endeavour that is the spectacle rather than a momentary glimpse. A few people were following him down the Kew side towpath, and on the Brentford side a smattering of pot banging, whistle blowing and flag waving marked his passing.

As Mr Walliams moved on, though; the following boat, containing the gentlemen & ladies of the press, er, didn't, just sat there revving it's outboard. There's a bank of gravel where the Brent joins the Thames, and they found it. At first the fourth estate took the opportunity for a photocall:

but, as the Walliams entourage disappeared around the corner to Kew Bridge, it was clear they weren't going anywhwere this side of the tide. Eventually the PLA launch 'Chelsea' came to the rescue and took off the journos:

The launch & crew just had to sit there; they were still there at midday as I left for work, and had another few hours to wait for the water:

Meanwhile, the tiny dinghy originally following the whole lot, protesting the levels of human effluent put into the water (but alas only so there's more fish for them to torture, being an angling organisation):

got into trouble itself, running down the outside of the press boat and beaching themselves on the island, before eventually heading off again:

Many thanks, by the way, to Mike Mason of dutch barge 'Serendipity' moored at the mouth of the Brent, who emailed me the press boat photos, which all happened after my camera battery had died. I've published them small deliberately; if any press types want to use any of them, I'll happily put you in touch with Mike but you can't nick them from here...

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