This being the day after the Coronation, the train was busy with people en route to friends and family gatherings. There were 15 of us on the train and there was plenty to talk about, some of our members having been in the crowd lining the mall. There was general agreement as to the high quality of the music.
Changing trains at Guildford, we trundled two stops to Chilworth in a 3 coach diesel unit. It was dry but overcast as we set off; to the North we could see St Martha’s Church on the North Downs, that we would reach in the afternoon. Walking eastwards, and then north, through farmland and heath we reached Shere. Shere was celebrating the Coronation big time. The road down by the river was closed with tables full of happy diners. Some of us had our lunch behind the parish church, St James. This is famous, not just for being in Bridget Jones Diary but also for the unsettling history of the Anchoress of 1329.
Our numbers increased to 18, augmented by Hilary and Rochelle, whose train had been cancelled, and Sandra who had previously done the morning section with me. Passing through the street party, we stopped to admire the allotments at the end of the village.
Those of us who encourage things to grow on the unyielding London clay could only look enviously at the lovely rich dark alluvial soil.
The weather picked up and we headed back towards Guildford in full sunshine. We passed through pleasant farming land before the steepish climb through woods to St Martha’s. The views from here to the south were stunning and, we had a well earned rest along with many fellow citizens. A final stretch took us to Pewley downs, with further great views before descending into Guildford where cups of tea or glasses of beer awaited.
Thanks to those that came out and contributed to a very pleasant day.
Photos by Stuart and Mike