By A.D. 50 it had modified course and it gave Britain its capital after the invading Roman armies established Londinium as a port at the highest level of the tide. (it now reaches farther inland resulting from rising sea levels and the fact that Britain is sinking into the ocean at a rate of 15 cm every a hundred years.)
The Romans consolidated the river as a world port (commerce with the Continent had started in the Bronze Age), constructing mills, wharves, and bridges. The iconic London Bridge was the first water crossing, lined with houses and shops; it has been replaced a number of times, most recently in the Sixties when the earlier one was taken apart and shipped to the USA. There are actually 14 bridges in central London, the most recent being the Golden Jubilee footbridges inbuilt 2002.
About 100km (60 miles) from the ocean, the Thames becomes tidal, flowing "the unsuitable method" toward its source twice a day as the sea pushes up the estuary. As the tide falls, the foreshore is disclosed, and in the mud and slush you can discover fascinating clues to London's past, together with clay tobacco pipes and pottery fragments.
The Thames was most splendid under the Tudors and Stuarts, when the river-loving monarchs lived in pretty waterside palaces at Hampton Court, Kew, Richmond, Whitehall, and Greenwich, using the waters as a "royal freeway." Fittingly, the Thames noticed many monarchs' ultimate journeys in the type of stately funeral processions, together with that of Elizabeth I in 1605, and that of Henry VIII in 1547. Its stated that during the overnight cease at Syon House his coffin came apart and dogs licked at his corpse.
Right now you'll be able to travel the identical waters on passenger ferries or tourist vessels from Westminster upriver to Hampton Court via Richmond and Kew, or downriver to the glittering stainless-metal Thames Barrier through Greenwich. Alternatively, you possibly can stroll all or a part of the Thames Path from the river's supply at Thames Head all the way down to the Thames Barrier, or meander along the South Bank with its riverside tourist sights, eating places, English pubs, and buying malls. (Be aware that a walk along the Embankment on the opposite aspect could be irritating for little kids because of its excessive walls.)
If you're on the Thames, try to image in your mind's eye the Lord Mayor's processions that came about from the 15th century to the middle of the nineteenth, in barges covered with gold, some rowed with silver oars. In the 17th and 18th centuries, Frost Gala's had been held on the river during winter freezes, full with fairground amusements and stalls, performing clowns, and ox roasts.
At the moment, The Mayor's Thames Pageant is a implausible household-oriented celebration of the Thames, together with the transformation of a part of the shore on the South Financial institution into a brief city seaside. The river also hosts a wide range of annual regattas, including the well-known Oxford and Cambridge Boat Race.