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Written by Kevin Lee - 30 Jun 2005
last update by Paul Davis - 12 May 2006
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Location notes
On the Great Western Main Line between Reading and Didcot Parkway.

As with a lot of Great Western vantage points this bridge is being rebuilt and the view will change. Updated images of both the shot and of the bridge itself would be welcomed to update the page.
Railway type and traffic
First Great Western Link local services to Oxford, two each way an hour- operated by 165s/166s. First Great Western Link express services to Oxford, two each way an hour- operated by 180s. First Great Western Express services to Bristol, Swansea, Cardiff, Cheltenham, Hereford and Worcester, four to five each way an hour, operated by HSTs and 180s. Virgin Cross Country services, two each way an hour. One to/from Reading and One to/from Bournemouth.
Freight consist of a roughly hourly Freightliner, as well as DB Schenker operated Intermodals, Enterprises, Automotive, Departmentals and 'others'. The Freightliner Heavy Haul operated High Output Ballast Cleaner can produced regular trains to and from Hinksey and Appleford for new ballast and to dispose of spoil.
A narrow lane which is also a footpath to a riverside Hotel 'The Leathern Bottel Inn' and houses. Mostly open fields and the large riverside houses. There is a field with a horse in! The bridge itself is brick, with relatively low sides - the verges are overgrown with shrubs but can be easily trampled where required.
The road is quite but there are quite a few 'posh' cars going down to the hotel, they might sometimes stop for a chat!
Road directions
From Reading/M4 you need to get on the A329 towards Oxford, when you reach Streatly you will come to a crossroads with the B4009, turn right into Goring.
From Oxford/M40 you need to take the A329 towards Reading, just after the A417 joins you from the right you will enter Streatly where you will reach the crossroads with the B4009, turn left into Goring.
You will then cross the River Thames and the railway line, immediately after the railway bridge, turn left (still on the B4009 to Wallingford). You and the railway line which the road parallels are now heading north. The road gently turns away from the railway, go across the crossroads where the left turn goes under the railway. About 1km from here there is a run-down farm building undergoing redevelopment and a sign to the hotel and restaurant at the point where the 30mph speed restriction ends, take the road to the left, following down until you reach the bridge.

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Goring, Spring Farm map co-ordinates
Just before you reach the bridge there is a lay-by to the right, you can pull in here (if you wish to turn round go over the bridge and turn at the small junction). This is often used by Network Rail vans/cars, if it is full go over the bridge and turn round, as you come back up the hill pull in to the left as tight as you can. It is recommend that in both places you fold in your wing mirror on the road side.
Public transport
First Great Western Link run a half-hourly London - Oxford service that calls at Goring and Streatly. It is then a 2 - 2 km walk from the station.

The Inn can accomodate you if you are arriving by helicopter - to quote
'The grid reference number is: 601-825 for visiting us by helicopter. Our guests will be collected from their landing point on green meadows across the river in a fully solar powered boat to the leatherne bottel. booking is essential.'

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No amenities as such, Goring back down the road will have the usual assortment of shops and chippies. I suspect you would get turned away if you turned up at the hotel restaurant in spotting clobber!
Sun Compass
Sun Compass using Suncalc by brought to you by Vladimir Agafonkin:
It might be necessary to adjust the time to suit your visit, this link should open with the current day.
Goring, Spring Farm

Googly map
Streetmap links
Goring, Spring Farm general view map
Goring, Spring Farm close up map

Windows Local Live Link - image quality may vary
Goring, Spring Farm

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Railway Gen Group
Wessex Rail Gen [WRGen]
Photographic notes
The line is aligned north/south at this point and mostly flanked with tall trees so is really only suitable for photography from 1000 and 1700, but is best during the summer months.
The down main will be best in the morning and the up relief best in the afternoon. I usually use the bridge between 1300 and 1700 for the afternoon's freight workings and then move to a spot such as Manor Farm Chosley for the evening traffic.

The lane at Goring leading to the Leathern Bottle Inn has been 'blessed' with a radio mast - see fig 5. The good news is that this is alongside the Up Relief and has opened up the view looking towards Reading. The plastic sheeting (down in May 2006) should go in due course. The shot is of course into the sun.

General views - All photographs © Kevin Lee unless otherwise stated
Fig 1 - Looking north

Fig 1 - Looking north

The up relief

Fig 2 - Looking north

Fig 2 - Looking north

The up main

Fig 3 - Looking south

Fig 3 - Looking south

The down relief

Fig 4 - Looking south

Fig 4 - Looking south

The down main

Fig 5 - Looking south - Photo by Paul Davis

Fig 5 - Looking south - <i>Photo by Paul Davis</i>

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