Wednesday 6th March exploring some of the City gardens

Val lead a leisurely walk with five of us, from St Paul’s round some of the City of London’s gardens, which included several historical sites. We started at the Postman’s Park with it’s GF Watts Memorial wall, passing St Bartholomew’s distinctive church on the way to West Smithfield Gardens (with a history of jousts, tournaments, executions and a market). We then spent some time at the City walls where there is a garden and information on the history of the area.

A lovely secluded garden is dedicated to John Heminge and Henry Condell, actors who published the first portfolio of Shakespeare plays; (on the way passing plaques marking Shakespeare’s lodgings and where Sir John Betjeman lived).

The Barbican was our lunch stop where we made use of the outdoor space to eat our sandwiches and warmed up with hot drinks in the café.

The walk was finished through Fortune Park and Bunhill Fields Burial grounds – another historical site where there are the graves of William Blake, Daniel De-Foe and John Bunyan amongst others; ending at Old Street.

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17th March 2019 Harrow-on-Hill

The playing fields of Harrow school, historic buildings of Harrow
 Village, a cemetry and a wood.

This an excursion in Northwest London through a park and then the
playing fields of Harrow School, one of the country’s leading ‘public’,
i.e. fee-paying independent schools, up onto the hill that’s dominated by
the school buildings, its chapel and Harrow’s church. Down from the hill
through the hanging cemetery and skirt around the hill to
re-ascend through residential streets to the High Street, lined by historic
school buildings and tea options. The walk finished with a descent along a wood and across a grassy open space down to ‘modern’ Harrow
 and its busy station.
Lively conversation regarding  our view of tail-coated brash Harrovians
held in bright sunshine.

Led by Caroline

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10th March 2019 West Byfleet circular

A 6 1/2 mile circular from West Byfleet in Surrey, 
some of it along the river Wey navigation.

Led by Jonathan

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3rd March 2019 Benfleet to Leigh on Sea

Six hardy souls ventured out despite warnings of Storm Freya, starting at Benfleet station. The walk covered completely different territory: the higher ground north of the estuary and Canvey Island, through mounds of mud along narrow, grassy paths through the dense, hilly woodland of Benfleet Downs and Hadleigh Country Park. We passed an “Iron Age” Roundhouse heading for the Salvation army tea rooms above the ruined Hadleigh Castle. Unfortunately these were closed but we managed our lunch stop with superb views across Canvey Island to the Hoo Peninsula and the North Downs in Kent. We then descended through less mud to Leigh on Sea  where we did find a fine tea room and ended our walk.

“Iron Age” Roundhouse in Hadleigh Park

Dramatic Hadleigh Castle with threatening skies

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17th Feb 2019 Circular from Tring

Start up towards Ivinghoe Beacon , dropping down through fields, a little road walking, past old windmill to canal. Afternoon tea at BlueBell Tearooms, continue along canal back to Tring Station.

May be muddy.

Led by Jean Duggleby 

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Friday 15th Feb Holland Park short walk

Fukushima Japanese garden

‘This month’s short walk was a sunny stroll through some of London’s central parks, starting at Hyde Park corner and ending at Holland Park. Pam organised the walk and nine people took part.

It was a relaxed day including tea and cakes at the Serpentine café and lunch inHolland Park.

The final garden was the Fukushima Japanese garden in Holland Park, built to commemorate the ‘heartfelt gratitude’ of the Japanese people for British support following the 2011 Fukushima nuclear plant disaster due to the tsunami. An unknown corner of the park to most of us.’

Crocus in the sun.
Peacock enjoying the weather,

Photos by Liz Kingston-Smith

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Sunday 10th February – Wormwood Scrubs to Hampstead Heath and Kenwood (7.5 miles)

Wormwood Scrubs to Hampstead Heath and Kenwood (7.5 miles)(via Scrubs, the Grand Union Canal, Regents Park and Primrose Hill)

A pleasant walk which improves as it goes on. Regents Park is lovely.

Led by Don

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