SATURDAY 22nd APRIL: ICKNIELD WAY: ROYSTON to GREAT CHESTERFORD

Fifteen PolyRamblers and one guest turned out for stage five of the Icknield Way on Saturday. Heading east from Royston, the weather seemed more promising than forecast and we were soon shedding waterproofs and fleeces. We passed the Greenwich Meridian line and then left the busy A505 to head across country, following field edges and green lanes. Soon we left Hertfordshire for Cambridgeshire. The sound of birdsong replaced traffic noise but competed with Spitfires from nearby Duxford.  Before long we were heading uphill to reach the village of Heydon, which is claimed to be one of the highest in Cambridgeshire (not much of an accolade!). We stopped to eat our sandwiches and had a drink at the very pleasant King William IV pub. As we approached the next village of Chrishall we crossed another county border into Essex and some of us paused to buy boxes of eggs on sale by the roadside. Chrishall also had a pub with a thatched roof, the Red Cow, but we couldn’t really justify stopping so soon after lunch. The route took us alongside some lovely woods full of bluebells and then to the village of Elmdon where sadly the pub had closed. We continued past calves in a farmyard to the village of Strethall where some of us made
a short diversion to visit the church (no pub). From there it was another two miles across country and up to cross the M11 and then the railway to reach the station at Great Chesterford. A very enjoyable day at a good pace and the countryside was prettier than I expected (in spite of being flat!).  It’s encouraging  to see such a high turnout for a 13 mile walk.

Gillian

Photos: Gillian and Pam

 

 

SATURDAY 6th MAY: ST. MARGARETS to THE HADHAMS (Herts) (LINEAR)

Walk from St Margarets through Perry Green, where we see some of Henry Moore’s sculptures, and Hadham Mill, Hadham Cross, Much Hadham, Hadham Ford and Little Hadham.  Meet Liverpool St stn. Buy OPDR to St Margarets. Train dep. 9.42,  arr. St Margaret’s 10.21  Late lunch at the Hoops Inn (slightly expensive) in Perry Green. Bus 351 back from one of the Hadhams at 16.30. Distance 10.7 miles. Maps: LR 166 & 167. Leader: Dominique

Photo: Henry Moore.  Double Oval.  Perry Green

SATURDAY 15TH APRIL: DENHAM CIRCULAR

On a sunny but chilly morning, twenty-two members assembled at Denham Station for a gentle walk in the Colne Valley. After visiting the quaint village and the grave of Sir John Mills, we headed through the adjacent Country Park and then joined the Grand Union Canal. We followed the towpath for around three miles during which we passed a group of new age campers protesting against HS2 . Some of us signed the proffered petition while others hurried by without stopping! Our lunch stop the Coy Carp awaited us at the end of the towpath and fortunately it was just warm enough to sit outside to eat our food. We then headed west between lakes accompanied by numerous midges before the only climb of the day through farmland and woods. Finally we skirted Denham Aerodrome before reaching the station for our return journey. A bag of Cadbury’s Mini-Easter Eggs helped to alleviate any aches and pains!

Danny

Photos by Pam and Gillian

Saturday 8 April: Source of the Thames

We had beautiful sunshine for this day out in Gloucestershire, a bit further than our average walks. 8 Polyramblers braved the longer journey to Kemble. After walking through a meadow, we found the infant Thames which we followed for a while. We crossed more meadows and reached the source of the Thames (dry) marked by a stone. We continued the walk along the abandoned Severn and Thames Canal until we reached the Coates Tunnel. We had a leisurely lunch at The Tunnel Inn but resisted the desserts. We walked through more fields before reaching the source again where we had a celebratory piece of chocolate provided by the leader. We then retraced our steps to the lovely Kemble station.

Dominique