21st August 2016: Harlington, Bunyan’s Oak and Sharpenhoe Clappers

Fran led a group of 9 on this lovely walk in an area of Bedfordshire which has many connections with John Bunyan, author of Pilgrim’s Progress. After leaving the pretty village of Harlington we crossed fields and had a glimpse of Bunyan’s Oak, now very dead but still standing. A very rutted green lane took us to Sharpenhoe village where our hopes of a pub were dashed -a pub no longer. From here we climbed steep steps up Sharpenhoe Clappers -a ribbon of chalk escarpment topped by a beech hanger where we stopped for lunch. The views from here on were magnificent, across a wide expanse of farmland into the far distance. On a bright, blustery day with a few spots of rain the clouds were scudding across the wide skies. A gradual descent through more fields and woodland, with a couple of minor hiccups in route finding, took us through Sundon Hills Country Park back to Harlington. Here we were pleasantly surprised to find The Old Sun pub where we stopped for refreshment before catching the train back to St. Pancras.


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