London Loop: Chigwell to Harold Wood walk – 7th August.

 Six of us set out from Chigwell station. The weather was beautiful,  though as the day went on we were glad to escape into the trees now and then as a break from the sun. Lunch was taken at a cafe by the lake in Hainault Forest Country Park. After that we skirted the park and,  with the help of Geoffrey’s gps, managed to cross a golf course. Loop signs, when visible, were directing us into bushes and along overgrown paths. Going southeast we reached and crossed Havering Country park. Members commented on how the walk felt more like a countryside walk rather than one actually in London. Some highlights of the walk were the numerous horses we came across and the tall redwood trees in Havering Country park (pics). On reaching Harold Hill we were able to cross the town via little parks, treat ourselves to ice cream and avoid main roads to reach the station. Many of us had our first experience on the new Elizabeth line home.  Photos attached

Jackie

Lewes circular via Rodmell, Southease and Glynde, 23rd July

Sorry for the delay in writing this walk up. The trouble is that it was devised, planned and walked over many times by Harriet until it was perfect but ten days before the due date Harriet had a minor misstep at home and fractured her patella! So I have taken time to pluck up the courage to tell you, those of you who were not on the walk, that it went really well and turned out to be the best walk I can remember! Yes, it was hot (25°C) and there are three steep slopes to be climbed, but there was a soothing breeze and the climbs are not that long, really! We have walked it before in different weather and I still remember the icy wind in my seaward ear as we walked along the ridge of the Downs one winter’s walkover! The group (10 in all) entered into the challenge of the occasion, taking seriously the fact that we had to keep up a steady pace in order to get to the tea shop in Glynde by 4pm to allow time to eat our delicious home-made cake and drink our speciality tea in appropriate style! Once through charming gardens and past the historic buildings on the edge of Lewes, including Anne of Cleves’ house, which we vow to visit each time we pass, over the bridge above the A27, we started on the relatively gently slope up to the South Downs Way, past a solitary windmill and then onto the chalk path up to the ridge. We remarked upon the number of lone lycra-clad cyclists in circulation during the course of the day. Continue reading Lewes circular via Rodmell, Southease and Glynde, 23rd July

SHOREHAM CIRCULAR VIA LULLINGSTONE 16 JULY

Eleven ramblers set off in the heat to walk the environs of Shoreham.

A welcomed break was taken at Castle Farm where everything lavender was being sold including ice cream! We left the lilac coloured fields walking along the River Darent and pass Lullingstone Country Park, trekking through parched fields getting some relief from the sun with tall hedgerows conveniently being in the right place and shady woodland where we picnicked.

The descent back into Shoreham brought much needed refreshment at the Samuel Palmer albeit a tad expensive.

Kim. Photos by Siew Kee and Nita

3 July: Walk with London Blind Ramblers to Mayfield Lavender Farm and the Oaks Park

Thanks to the Polyramblers and their friends who came to help guide the London Blind Ramblers to and from Mayfield Lavender Farm and the Oaks Park on 3rd July 2022. Here are some comments from some of our team.

“It was lovely to spend the day with the London Blind Ramblers on Sunday. The walk itself wound through some beautiful meadows while overhead we heard the piping of swifts darting about in the blue sky above our heads. We could sometimes see in the far distance glimpses of London’s vertical towers glinting in the sunshine but apart from that I felt I was deep in the countryside. We passed through some gorgeous lavender fields and then after lunch walked around some refreshingly cool woods before heading back to Coulsdon South in the warm sunshine. It was a great deal of fun meeting the Blind Ramblers and making new friends and they all seemed to enjoy it too.” Chris

“For me it was such a privilege to walk with someone who had no sight but who could absorb the sounds, the smells, the touch of everything around her and who could imagine and enjoy the beauty of nature that we were describing. It made me so grateful on the day that I have the gift of sight and I will try not to take it for granted from now on, having got to know Taufiq and share some of her world during our walk together.” Jill

“I enjoyed the walk: especially the lunch spot was excellent- there were several options to suit all -ice creams, cafe and picnic benches to please all. Stiles were interesting and to see how the VIPs managed them.” Sunita

“It was such a privilege and honour to meet the Blind Ramblers again. They amaze me with their resilience and joy, (and the ability to tackle the stiles!). It was a lovely walk, friendly people, tall grass and butterflies! What more could anyone want? Jackie C.

“A big thank you for a most enjoyable walk today. Met more Poly members, also members from London Blind Ramblers. Enjoyed the experience of helping Sophie and later Taufiq. My three invitees: Bernadette, Marcya and Yukiko enjoyed the walk and company, and asked me to send you their best regards.” Meng

“I would add another mention of the lavender, which was the main focus of the trip after all, and was in full bloom, and which we were able to pause and enjoy on our walk across the farm, plus, later, the scent of the lime trees in the woodland. It was in complete contrast with the walk through the London parks with the LBRs in the autumn (which I didn’t get round to writing up!) to which Sunita kindly brought fragrance samples from her work so that we could enjoy some interesting aromas at a time of year when there were not so many around in nature! As the others have mentioned, the day reminded us to be aware of the difficulties some people, sighted or not and for various reasons, experience when tackling stiles, especially stiles that have been assembled with little thought of or in defiance of the users!” Pam

Thank you again to Polyramblers and friends for helping, guiding, shepherding, organising, mingling, helping over and round stiles and generally keeping the show on the road (29 of us in all!). No mean feat!

Pam. Photos from Jill and Pam

 

31st July, Joydon’s wood, Bexley

For third time in a week, I headed to Bexley to undertake a circular walk via Joyden’s Wood and alongside the River Cray. The previous two visits were for walkovers but on the first I got lost so I was unable to complete the circuit! The second was more successful after I downloaded an excellent map of the Woods showing all the paths. Still a bit apprehensive, I met up with nineteen members at the station and then we proceeded through the attractive village High Street, past some fine houses and the church with its unusual cone & pyramid spire. On the approach to Joyden’s Wood, we passed numerous stables as the area is popular for horse riding. Fortunately, there were no problems with way finding this time and we enjoyed the tree cover providing shade from the strong sunshine. We stopped at the scheduled ancient monument of Faesten Dic and admired the wooden replica of a Hurricane plane, commemorating the bailing out a pilot there in the war. Leaving the woods, we crossed over to the fields fringing the River Cray and stood on Five Arch Bridge looking at the wildlife in the water. Next, we headed for the White Cross pub for our lunch stop where the sausage sandwich was particularly tasty! Finally, a stretch of the London Loop brought us past a match in progress at Bexley Cricket Club and back to the station for our train home.

Danny

Photographs courtesy of Nita and Gillian.