Photographing Bosham

May 27, 2020  •  Leave a Comment

Photographing Bosham

Bosham is a pretty, sleepy village on Chichester Harbour, it's a couple of hours drive from where I live and one of the places I like to visit and photograph. It looks like a wealthy place now, but a thousand years ago is was one of the richest and most powerful places in England.

It's said that Bosham is where Cnut (Canute?) tried to hold back the tide to show his sycophantic courtiers that he was't all powerful. There is a story that Cnut had a daughter that drowned here and that her tomb is in the church. The wealth of Bosham in Saxon times may have been why Harold Godwinson lived in Bosham, at the manor house. His visit to the church and manor are shown in the Bayeux Tapestry. After he came in second at the battle of Hastings his remains may have been buried here later.

Chichester Harbour is a Site of Special Scientific Interest, a wetland visited migrating wildfowl, so it’s popular with birdwatchers.

Watching the tide come in, is a good a way to spend a couple of hours and if you have a camera (or several) a great place for photography.

 I have gone around the village and taken a few photos, but as people's windows give out onto the High Street, not too many. The cafe on the right does a very good breakfast and gives great views of the water, when it's there.

Some of these photos are rather smaller than others, the web site sets the photo size to 944px (!?) for the blog, but I usually add my photos at 800px. The new images for the Bosham gallery update were added at blog size. - lockdown blogging.

Bosham close up

Houses and boats at BoshamHouses in BoshamView of the waterfront at Bosham looking towards the church and the Anchor Bleu pub.

A cafe on the High Street in BoshamSwans swimming in the water covering the road in BoshamThe high tides at Bosham can come a long way up the roads that runs down to the water. The cafe on the right has provided some very good breakfasts.

 

I've also been to the church, but learned the history after going, so I'll have to go back and look again.
The church has its own web site and gives all the information you would want

An open bible in a churchInside Bosham churchAn open bible in an open church. Not just somewhere to visit, but somewhere to find spiritual insights too.

 

For me, the best view is from the other side of the tidal inlet. Shore Road runs from the quay, around the outside of the tidal inlet and then on towards Bosham Ho. The harbour is usually quite interesting, with something going on much of the time, at the top of the inlet there are often some swans and then the road goes on to where the best views of the village can be seen.

At the Quay

Reflections at Bosham QuayBosham QuayReflections of pilings under calm winter skies over Bosham Quay.

One of the places swans congregate
swans in Bosham at high tideTop end of the tidal Inlet at BoshamSwans walking and swimming at the end of Bosham inlet at high tide, with Bosham and low, grey cloud in the background.

There's a small, private jetty further round and it's a good place to get seagull photos.

Private Jetty

 

Jetty with lots of seagullsPrivate jetty at Bosham with a small flock o seagulls perched on itSeveral seaguls perchong on a private jetty at Bosham JettyPrivate jetty at BoshamA private jetty at Bosham with lichen and seaweed growing on it

Further down, there's a small pebble beach with some boats and dingies pulled out of the water.

Small pebble beach

 

Little CnutDingies pulled ashoreDingies pulled up out of the water at Bosham. The front craft is called Little Cnut

 

Where I like to take photos

Along here is the best place to watch and photograph the tide coming in.

If you get the right tide at the right time, it can be absolutely dazzling. High tide in the golden hour is really, really spectacular. I've also done a couple of time lapses here too.

Bosham in the golden dawn lightHigh tide at Bosham during the golden hourA general view of Bosham and its reflection at high tide during the Golden Hour. Panorama of Bosham at high tide.Panoramic view of Bosham at high tide during the golden hourA panorama of Bosham in West Sussex at high tide during the golden hour

At other times, the view can be really pretty, and equally beautifully lit.

Perfect view of BoshamHigh tide at BoshamA perfect view and reflection of Bosham at high tide.

A few times when I've been there, boating activities start when the tide comes in.

Motor boatA motor boat cruising past Bosham churchA motor boat cruising past Bosham church at high tide, lit by autumn sunshine

Two Medway SkiffsTwo Medway Skiffs being rowed at Bosham at high tideRowing proctice in (what I think were called) Medway Skiffs on Chichester harbour at Bosham

Two small sailing boats with red sailsTwo small sailing boats with red sailsMembers of Bosham Sailing Club sailing small boats in Bosham inlet at high tide during the summer of 2011.

 

The road carries on for a few hundred metres and then bends away to the left. There's a footpath that carries on beside the water and heads towards a ferry that goes across to Ichenor. I'm not sure what that is, there was no obvious sign when I walked down there.

The second private jetty

View of Bosham churchBosham church and a private jettyA general view of bosham church from across the inlet to Chichester Harbout. There is a disused private jetty in the foreground. Photographed at Low tide during December 2019. The tower is the oldest part of the church and was built in four stages, the first three are Saxon and the top stage is Norman. The spire was added in the 15th century. The chancel arch was built in the 11th century shortly after the Norman Conquest of 1066.<br/><br/>Bosham church is also depicted in the Bayeux Tapestry which features the series of events leading up to the Conquest of England by Duke William of Normany in 1066. There is also a long held tradition that early in the 11th century King Cnut’s young daughter was drowned in the millstream and was buried in the church. In 1865 a small stone coffin was found just in front of the chancel arch. However, without closer examination of the coffin precise dating of the coffin is difficult.

 

Wildlife

By wildlife, really I mean birds.

One think I've learned over the years is that my camera gear, which is optimised for sport, really isn't good enough for birding, unless it's a swan or the bird is really close.

Egret

Little egret in flightLittle egret in flightA little egret in flight at Bosham. The Little Egret - Egretta garzetta - first appeared in the UK in significant numbers in 1989 and first bred in Dorset in 1996. Its colonization followed naturally from a range expansion into western and northern France in previous decades. It is now at home on numerous south coast sites, both as a breeding species and as a winter visitor.

CrowCrowA Crow - Corvus Corone - looking for food along the water's edge as the tide goes down on Chichester harbour at Bosham.

Crow carrying a dead seagull chick

 Corvus Corone - flying with a bird chick held in its bill Corvus Corone - flying with a bird chick held in its billA Crow - Corvus Corone - flying with a bird chick held in its bill. Photographed on Chichester harbour at Bosham.

Oystercatcher 

Oystercatcher - Haematopus ostralegusOystercatcher - Haematopus ostralegusAn Oystercatcher - Haematopus ostralegus - feeding on Chichester harbour at Bosham as the tide goes down.

Curlew

Curlew - Numenius arquataCurlew - Numenius arquataA Curlew - Numenius arquata feeding on Chichester harbour at Bosham as the tide went down.

Teal

TealMale TealTeal

Brent Goose

Brent gooseBrent gooseA winter visitor to Bosham in West Sussex

Redshank

Redshank - Tringa totanusRedshank - Tringa totanusA Redshank - Tringa totanus - perching on one leg on Bosham inlet.

Bar-tailed godwits

Bar-tailed godwitsBar-tailed godwitsA pair of Bar-tailed godwits - Limosa lapponica - feeding on Bosham inlet at low tide.

Greenshank
GreenshankGreenshank - Tringa nebulariaA Greenshank - Tringa nebularia - feeding on Bosham inlet at low tide.

If you can stay around for the evening, that can be magical too.

Evening at BoshamEvening at BoshamPink evening skies Looking towards Bosham and the church along the freshwater channel that leads through the tidal inlet.

Visiting Bosham

I really like this place and I'm really looking forward to getting back there after the lockdown ends - I'm writing this at the end of May 2020.

It's a place I can recommend and it's not difficult to get to from my part of the county.

I have one very important piece of advice, there's a good car park at Bosham, it's not expensive and it has a bus stop and toilets too. Don't be tempted to think you can park on one of the roads.

One of the first things you will see, is this sign: -

Flood warning signThis road floods each tide.The flood warning sign on Shore Road in Bosham on a calm winder's day as the tide comes in.

Don't risk ignoring it. The car park isn't expensive, filling your car with sea water is.

sunken carsSunken carsA confused looking man beside two cars that are starting to be flooded by a rising tide, within a few metre of a sign saying the road floods each tide.

 

Update

In July 2020 I went down to Bosham to photograph Comet C/2020 F3 (NEOWISE). I had a reasonable idea of where it was going to be in the sky, so it was just a matter of waiting for it to appear in the night sky. Eventually it appeared and I was rewarded with images like these.

Comet Neowise in the sky over BoshamComet Neowise in the sky over BoshamComet C/2020 F3 (NEOWISE) photographed in the sky over Bosham in West Sussex on the night of 17-18 July 2020.

Comet Neowise in the sky over BoshamComet Neowise in the sky over BoshamComet C/2020 F3 (NEOWISE) photographed in the sky over Bosham in West Sussex on the night of 17-18 July 2020.

I hope you enjoy this photo blog. I'm planning to put together another on about film photography at Bosham.


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