At 42 miles, the Colne is the longest river in Essex. In 2011, Ken Rickman decided to explore its entire length and this impressive book is the result. Starting at its estuary between East Mersea and Brightlingsea he traces our local river right back to its source, an ancient spring in a field beside Ridgewell’s St Lawrence church. The fascination of the book is the details Ken unearths along the way. So we find out about the background to the legend of St Osyth and the founding of the Priory. We discover that, in Victorian times, Wivenhoe had the only dry dock between London and Lowestoft and an experimental mini submarine was built and launched there. Personal observations on the countryside and history make this a rich and rewarding read.