The Dollis-Mutton-Brent is currently the largest object held in the Museum of Thin Objects as it’s a stream-that-becomes-a-river-that-becomes-a-canal-that-joins-a-river.

Driving out of London via Brent Cross, almost without being aware of it’s presence, you cross and re-cross a river. An urban river. An all-but-hidden water world. A water course close to where I live yet absent, I know so little about it. It’s a shadow, an unknown entity – and that’s the attraction. This 16 mile tributary of the Thames is ripe for exploring. I don’t know quite where it’ll take me.

Gentle Brent, I used to know you
Wandering Wembley-wards at will,
Now what change your waters show you
In the meadowlands you fill!
Recollect the elm-trees misty
And the footpaths climbing twisty
Under cedar-shaded palings,
Low laburnum-leaned-on railings
Out of Northolt on and upward to the heights of Harrow Hill.

Sir John Betjeman “Middlesex”

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