READING AND RETURN FROM ALDERMASTON
You can do this route from :
Aldermaston wharf is close to the railway station with good connections to Paddington in London, taking 55 minutes from London Paddington , or 13 minutes from Reading railway station.
At Aldermaston Wharf is the Kennet & Avon Canal Trust Visitor centre, with a picnic area, and serving light refreshments from Easter -Oct. There is also the Butt Inn pub at Aldermaston Wharf, serving real ales and excellent food for all the family.
Famous as one of the UK’s top ten retail destinations the heart of Reading offers much more than superb shopping (although that is a serious plus point).
For instance, The Forbury Gardens, a nationally acclaimed Victorian formal garden, is the town’s floral heart, leading you beautifully to the ruins of Reading Abbey, ancient monument and burial place of a King of England.
Wander through the ruins to the Kennet and Avon Canal, strolling past Reading Gaol and the Oscar Wilde gates. There is so much to intrigue and inspire, you’ll want to walk the canal, past the sites of Reading’s industrial past. Find yourself at Blake’s Lock, in the shadow of luxury apartments. Explore the Riverside Museum and relax on a barge moored outside a restaurant that started life as a Victorian pumping station.
From the marina cruise East, Padworth Lock will soon be reached.
The canal heads North East, constantly joining and re-joining the River Kennet. Beyond Tyle Mill
are a series of gravel pits offering a wildlife haven, the canal continues through wooded fields past the village of Sulhamstead. The nature reserves of Cumber lake to the North and Woolwich Green lake to the south can be reached by a short walk from Sulhamstead Lock. There is a swing bridge at Theale, the village is ¾ mile to the north, there are a few pubs, stores, garage, and a chemist and a bank in the quiet village.
It is just under 3 hours to here, and an ideal place to stop for your 1st night.
The peace of the surroundings is momentarily interrupted as you go under the M4 motorway, but on the outskirts of Reading the water filled nature reserve gravel pits bring a degree of serenity.
The River cuts through the middle of the town and so access to all facilities is easy, but the River is
through a narrow channel & fast flowing, so care is needed, there are traffic lights controlling this section. Reading is a large town with lots of shops and pubs. Visit the website for what to see & do:
The Museum of English Rural life, also Reading Museum, & 12th century Abbey ruins. There are 2 big shopping centres, the Oracle and Broad St Mall, which includes big High Street names, and independent shops.
The River museum is by Blakes Lock, housed in the city's old sewerage pumping station, displays include a gipsy caravan. The old turbine house has lovely views over the River.
The centre of Reading is within easy reach of the canal, for those who enjoy cosmopolitan pursuits, high end dining and large shopping centres, there is plenty to do here. There are quieter areas of the city at the abbey ruins or Forbury Gardens as well as quieter side streets with family run shops and restaurants with more traditional dining and ales.
For stag & hen parties -The day time activities in and near to the town range from Wildcat Hovercrafts at White Waltham or to Paintballing.
Why not visit the Museum of Berkshire Aviation and don't forget there is Premier League football on offer at the Madejski Stadium. Book your weekend to coincide with the world famous Reading Festival where previous acts have included Pulp, The Cure, Kaiser Chiefs and Muse.
It is 3.5 hours to here, there are moorings on the Reading Jail Loop.
It is just over 6 hours back to Aldermaston from here.
NB: This route has been provided as a guide only. Information may become inaccurate or out of date. You should always check with the marina that the route is possible within your time frame, current weather conditions and canal stoppages etc.
Maps and Guides
Pubs available on this canal route:-
|Pub Name||Pub Address||Distance from Aldermaston||More Info|
|The Butt Inn||Station Road, Aldermaston Wharf, Reading RG7 4LA||0.21 Miles||Full Details|
|The Hinds Head||Wasing Lane, Aldermaston RG7 4LX||1.44 Miles||Full Details|
|The Cunning Man||Burghfield Road, Burghfield Bridge, Reading RG30 3BR||3.60 Miles||Full Details|
|The Blue Ball||High Street, Kintbury RG17 9TK||5.36 Miles||Full Details|
|The White Hart||2 High Street, Thatcham RG19 3JD||5.36 Miles||Full Details|
|The Mansion House||Liebenrood Road, Reading RG30 2ND||6.31 Miles||Full Details|
|The Hook And Tackle||Katesgrove Lane, Reading RG1 2ND||7.75 Miles||Full Details|
|The Fishermans Cottage||Canal Way, Newtown, Reading RG1 3HJ||8.62 Miles||Full Details|
|The Crown Inn||60 Wilcot Road, Pewsey SN9 5NN||28.82 Miles||Full Details|
NB: Distances are as the crow flies and will vary for actual canal boating travel distance.