Time for a paddle

THERE was a time when the next best thing to a seaside paddle was a cycle trip to the ford at Edlesborough – when the road was a little less busy than it is today.

By The Newsroom
Sunday, 11th September 2011, 12:46 pm

This photo of children enjoying the fast-flowing Ouzel stream near Slicketts Lane was taken in August 1957.

It is still a beautiful spot and Richard and Anne Grant, who live in the former watermill nearby, have landscaped the marshy area in recent years to make it even more attractive.

The Ouzel, formerly known as the Bradenham stream, wells up from a spring a few hundred yards away on the other side of the main Tring Road.

The flow of water across the road is not so heavy now, as much of it is channelled through an underground pipe and the bed of the ford has been raised and given a surface more suitable for cars.

Mr Grant remembers that, before this, herds of cattle would drink at the ford and even Second World War bren-gun carriers were washed there.

Edlesborough windmill, whose tower (minus its sails) stands near the watermill, has been transformed into a holiday home for short-term letting.

Further upstream, landscaping has revealed the remains of another watermill, built in Roman times.

> Yesteryear is compiled by John Buckledee, chairman of Dunstable and District Local History Society