Saturday, 2 November 2013

The Wharf

The allotments are accessed from Wharf Road.  So what is the wharf?  The following is an extract from the 2010 Spring newsletter, edited by Peter Shrimpton.

The River Thames established Eynsham as a transport hub and trade route from the earliest of times. There was a wharf established at Eynsham in the middle-ages right through to the mid-19th century.  Eynsham wharf was an important connection to Oxford and London and from here onto the wider known world, sending and receiving goods such as coal, corn, salt and stone. Much of the stone used to build the Oxford colleges was shipped through Eynsham.
The River Thames up as far as Eynsham in its day could accommodate sailing ships of limited berth, this meant that the Raw materials could be transported direct up river from London to Eynsham. The goods could then be off-loaded onto carts and transported onwards.

One of the main markets for this trade was Witney.  The boom and expansion of the wool industry  supplying uniforms and blankets for the various campaigns that were being fought around the British Empire meant that coal and raw materials were brought "Up-river and then the finished  materials  "Blankets,  Treated wool & Uniforms would then be loaded back onto the returning boats, these would eventually end up in the main centre of trade of the day "London and from here would be exported world wide.

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