A neighborhood in West London
, formerly in Middlesex
also the point at which the River Thames
meets the Thames Estuary
It is just downriver from Kingston-upon-Thames
and Hampton Court
Teddington is the point where the jurisdiction of the National Rivers
Authority ends and that of the Port of London Authority begins. This
makes it the traditional point of separation between the commercial hubbub
of large ships on the lower Thames and the more genteel atmosphere of small
barges (whatever was able to fit through the lock) and people rowing up
and down the river for pleasure. For example, in Jerome K Jerome's
Men in a Boat (to say nothing of the Dog), J, Harris, and Montmorency
embarked at Kingston because it had the first railway station near a point
on the river above Teddington where they could get boats.
Teddington arose in 1811 as the site of a lock built to circumvent
a rapids in the Thames. The following year, a weir (dam) was built across
the rapids. An 1888 footbridge crosses the lock.
In 1852, in response to a cholera outbreak, Parliament passed
the Metropolitan Water Act, which forced water companies to move their
intakes above Teddington Lock.
In 1969, Teddington Lock was site of much silliness as Michael Palin
and Graham Chapman performed "The Fish-Slapping-Dance" for the very
first episode of Monty Python's Flying Circus. Perhaps this was
a slap in the face to Thames Television, whose studios are located across
the river from the lock.