We enjoyed our day and ended up over on the South Bank before going our various ways home. We decided to walk back to our car parked near Tower Bridge.
We do this walk along the Thames a lot and this pub reminded me of the times that John and I have spent on the foreshore of the Thames - Mudlarking. We first heard about it a few years ago at The Museum of London and they are linked to an organisation called The Thames Discovery.
Mudlarking dates back to the 18th and 19th centuries when people, normally children would scavenge for 'treasures' on the muddy foreshore of the Thames during low tides, for anything that had been washed up and could be resold. This was a way of earning a penny or two in their poverty stricken lives.
Nowadays, Mudlarking is more of a fun way of searching for archaelogical finds. It has been said that the Thames foreshore is possibly one of the largest archaelogical sites to be found in the UK. Articles such as pieces of household pottery and roof tiles that go back as far back as Roman times to more recent items of 17th century Delft pottery. There were Delftware factories across the Thames at Southwark and Lambeth. A popular find are the remains of 16th century clay tobacco pipes - which would have been used just the once and thrown away, possibly over the sides of the sailing boats of the day.
When we last went we were on the foreshore just beside the Millennium Bridge (you can't take photos because of the sheer muddiness of everything so the following are by courtesy of Google and Thames Discovery but are exactly what we experienced).
It's very exciting to forage amongst the mud and stones - you never know
what you might find washed up
Our time is limited as you always have to be mindful of the incoming tide
These are some of the items that can be found whilst scavenging -
our collection is very similar but for the moment are mislaid
(Whoops - I really must sort through that garage again!!)
We've normally been on a guided foreshore 'dig' with people from the Museum but if you go on your own it seems you have to have a permit and hand your 'finds' to the Museum in case they are precious artefacts. I found a BBC article on this subject here if you're interested.
Hope you enjoyed learning about one of our 'different' hobbies.
Bye for now