Walking Matters

Godalming & Haslemere Ramblers

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Witley circular

Today saw a change in the weather. It was less hot and less sunny and there were distant rumbles of thunder during our 6½ mile walk this morning. Fortunately, there was no rain.

Thirteen arrived for the walk. We met at the NT car park on Webb Lane in Witley, headed SW across Witley Common, crossed a lane to a bridleway, passed Lake Cottages, joined French Lane, followed this south to the Greensand Way, continued east on the GSW to Brook, crossed the A286, branched left off the GSW to Banacle Common and Parsonage Farm. Here we took a footpath north to Mare Hill, crossed the common to the A286, crossed the road to Witley Common, passed the site of the old visitor centre and arrived back at the car park.

Maps: OS X 145, 133

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Chenies and the manor

Our coach trip to Chenies Manor today was a big success. We had a great day. The journey there and back was slow but, as it involved the M25, this was expected.

Chenies Manor is open 2–5pm Wednesdays and Thursdays and is well worth a visit for those interested in gardens, historical houses and tea rooms. The organisers of our visit devised a five mile circular walk for us before the property was open.

We reached the village of Chenies shortly before 11am. The coach stopped outside the garden centre and all 57 of us trooped inside for refreshment (our invasion having been approved by the garden centre in advance). After this, now ready for a walk, we divided into two groups (the quick and the not so quick) and set off in opposite directions. We stopped briefly for a picnic lunch half way round and finished the walk at Chenies Manor.

It was a sunny day. When someone in the group took out his phone to look up the current temperature for the area, the chap next to him remarked ‘It’s somewhere between hot and bloody hot’. It turned out to be the hottest day of the year so far and the hottest since 1976. Tarmac on the Hog’s Back section of the A31 melted causing the road to be closed.

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Frensham, Spreakley & Tilford

There were 19 on today’s ten mile walk. This was more than the leader expected given it was a hot day. The walk was number 15 from our book Twenty Five Favourite Walks in West Surrey and Sussex.

We set off from the car park by Frensham Great Pond, headed south on a bridleway, crossed a lane near Frensham Hotel, continued on a bridleway to Frensham Manor, turned west on another bridleway towards Dockenfield, turned north uphill on a footpath to another that went NE to Spreakley. From here we walked on footpaths to Shortfield Common recreation ground where we stopped for refreshment in the shade of a tree.

We continued east, crossed the A287, turned along Priory Lane, branched left on a bridleway, joined a byway, turned left on a footpath that passed Meadow End Farm and reached Tilford, our stop for lunch. Our return to Frensham was via Tilhill House, Tilford Millbridge, Tilford Reeds, Pierrepont Home Farm, Frensham Little Pond café and Kings Ridge.

Map: OS X 145

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Blackheath circular

There were 34 on today’s joint walk with the London Blind Rambling Club—23 from G&HR and 11 from the LBRC plus one of their dogs. The weather was good; it was a warm sunny day with a welcome breeze. Paths were dry so we stayed clean. The dog, however, let off her lead when we were clear of roads, went home filthy. She found a pool of stagnant water and something more unpleasant.

Map: OS X 145

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London walk

Parks, flags, squares and circles featured on our 7½ mile walk in London today. We saw red, roses and recycled gasometers.

Most of our walks are in countryside but occasionally we go to London. Our route today started at Waterloo railway station, went over Westminster Bridge, along Parliament Street to King George Street, past the Foreign Office and statue of Robert Clive, over Horse Guards Road, through St James’s Park, across The Mall, through Green Park, past Berkeley Square, over Oxford Street to Manchester Square, past The Wallace Collection, along Marylebone High Street, over Marylebone Road to York Gate and into Regent’s Park where we stopped for lunch in Queen Mary’s Gardens.

After lunch the route went past London Zoo, across Albert Road, eastwards alongside Regent’s Canal, past Camden Lock, Gasholder Park and Camley Street Natural Park, over the canal at Granary Square, through St Pancras International station, over Euston Road to Woburn Place where we caught a bus back to Waterloo station.

The red was the colour of the jackets of the guardsmen lining The Mall for the rehearsal of the Trooping the Colour. The roses were in bloom in Queen Mary’s Gardens. The recycled gasometers were in Gasholder Park.

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Hindhead & Grayswood

The route of today’s walk was the same as the one last Wednesday. There was an obstruction on one of the footpaths again but it was not a bull; it was a tree, probably blown over in the recent storm. We had to crawl underneath it because it had fallen across a footbridge so there was no way round it.

Map: OS X 133