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It was an overcast day when we stopped off at Tewkesbury, Gloucestershire, on our way to Herefordshire. We walked around the abbey, the town and by the riverside, and in the course of our perambulation I took this photograph of these houses, raised above the water near the weir and the Abbey Mill. It's a picturesque row that to many people shouts out "Merrie England". The warm, orange brick, painted render, plain tile roofs, heavy chimney stacks, timber-framing with jettied first floor, and the pleasing individuality of the houses, each determinedly different from its neighbour, make a picturesque and pleasing scene. They are the sort of houses that many would wish to live in, residences with history, presence and character.
However, all is not quite so "chocolate box" quaint or jigsaw perfect as it seems. Living in houses by the rivers that flow through Tewkesbury requires a certain fortitude because flooding is no stranger to the town. In recent years there have been times when the area around the abbey has appeared to be an island or a peninsula in a large, irregular lake, and at the fringes of the island, and beyond, houses have their feet and sometimes their knees in water. Yet, despite this inconvenience and disruption, a feature that afflicts the area periodically, and has done for centuries, people still vie to buy the old houses that grace the streets. And consequently they continue to make a fine sight for visitors such as me and my camera.
photograph and text © Tony Boughen
Camera: Nikon D5300
Mode: Aperture Priority
Focal Length: 30mm (99mm - 45mm equiv.)
F No: f8
Shutter Speed: 1/250 sec
Exposure Compensation: 0 EV
Image Stabilisation: On