Sunday 5th Jan 2020 Dorking to Leatherhead

On a grey winter’s day seven of us gathered to walk on the Surrey Downs from Dorking. The walk went via the chapel at Westhumble, and through Norbury Park where we passed a great pile of timber at Norbury Park Wood Products. We walked through winter woodand where we stopped for our sandwiches looking over views of Surrey.

We continued going up gentle ups and downs till we came to Bocketts Farm where the remains of the Christmas grotto was still in evidence, and we had warming cups of coffee. We finished up along the River Mole wending our way to Leatherhead station where we returned, via various routes, to London.

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Sunday 29th December 2019 'The Line' River Lea

 Eleven of us met on a beautiful winter day for a short, urban walk along the banks of the River Lea. We passed The Mill House, the earliest example of a tidal mill where we spied cormorants and Egyptian geese.

Mill House

‘The Line’ is an art route featuring a variety of sculptures. We found two on the northern section, DNA D690 by Abigail Falls and The Hatchling by Joanna Rajkoastra which was supposed to transmit the sounds of birds but we were unable to hear these, although we could hear actual birds singing.

We continued along the river until we came to Cody Dock, an interesting community project on a former Gasworks site, where we had lunch stop enjoying the calm and the light on the reed beds.

It was not possible to follow the Lea right down to the Thames so we caught the DLR to Royal Victoria Dock to cross the Thames using the cable car where we had splendid views.

We could see Anthony Gormley’s Quantam Cloud from the cable car then saw it close up from the Thames path around the Millennium Dome where we also saw Liberty Gap, Gary Hume, A Slice of Reality by Richard Wilson and A Bullet from a Shooting Star by Alex Chinnock.

A varied walk combining East London waterways, industrial heritage, numerous new builds and culture!

The group silhouetted against the dipping sun!


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Sunday 15th Dec 2019 Mince Pie Walk

This year’s Mince Pie walk was about 4 miles down the Centenary Way south from Chingford. A large group walked from Chingford station down some very wet and muddy tracks before coming to an impassable stream, so we back tracked to find a rather broken-down bridge, which was rejected, so had to double back to the road to skirt round the stream.

We continued along the Centenary Way coming across Highams Park Lake which looked beautiful in the dipping sunlight. As we were all by then rather muddy and the light was beginning to fail we jumped on the train to get to Jean’s where she had organised magnificent mince pies and mulled wine.

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24th November 2019 Wendover Circular

Eleven of us enjoyed a lovely autumn walk through misty woodland. The route through Wendover Woods saw atmospheric mists with autumnal colours swirling into view. The going underfoot was rather muddy causing a couple of slips, the most comical of which was a tumble from a balance beam with me landing on my bottom in the mud much to the amusement of Jonathan and Jo!

As the mist thickened, we stopped for lunch at the cafe in the woods after going slightly off route due to concentration on good conversation, rather than where we were going.

Following lunch we descended through the woods to return to Wendover where the charity shops were raided successfully, while others enjoyed a hot chocolate or cuppa in the Chocolatiere cafe.  

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3rd Nov 2019 Berkhamsted circular walk

After arriving at Berkhamsted station we walked past the remains of the motte and bailey castle and up onto the Common.

We went through the glorious woods of Ashridge, National Trust land, with the oak trees and bracken turning a range of beautiful yellows and golds.

We then down into the valley and an easy walk back along the canal where we had our lunch perched on lock gates.

We continued along the canal where some of us helped close the lock gates after a barge had gone through.

We then continued on our way back into Berkhamsted where some of the party made for the tea shops while others headed straight for the train station.

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Sunday 27th October 2019 Petts Wood to Bexley

The walk this Sunday (27th) was Petts Wood to Bexley along the London Loop (about 6 miles).

From Petts Wood, the station, we walked though Petts Wood and then Scadbury Park. Once across the A20, we avoided the middle of Sidcup by walking through the grounds of Queen Mary’s Hospital. Anyone wanting a short walk (c. 4 miles) caught a bus from Footscray. The remainder of the walk followed the river Cray, ending in Old Bexley.

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20th October 2019 Wivelsfield Circular

A very muddy, autumnal 6-mile circular walk from Wivelsfield station passing close to the grade I listed sixteenth-century Ote Hall.

We went through beautiful quiet countryside over muddy fields and paths, one of which was so flooded we all got very soggy feet.

We continued onto Wivelsfield Green where we had lunch stop and tried to dry out our feet. Then continuing through more fields where autumn mushrooms were in abundance with a fairy ring of Parasol mushrooms, we descended to the station, muddy but satisfied after a good sunday walk. .

Parasol mushroom
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