London Walks

In London, walking on February 22, 2012 at 11:41 pm

According to my London MoonWalk training pack, this is now officially Week 1 of the training schedule. I’ve got until 12 May to get fit enough to walk 26.2 miles across London, at night, in a bra*, to raise money for breast cancer charities.

It is also clear that a few brisk walks round Crystal Palace park aren’t going to cut it. At some point before 12 May we have to fit in around six 6 mile walks, three 7 mile walks, a 10, a 12, a 14, two 16s and, the big one, a 20-mile-er.

Ignoring the immediate question of ‘When am I going to find time…?’, and moving on to the slightly more fun question of ‘Where am I going to go?’ I’ve dug out my Time Out London Walks books, my collection of leaflets on things like the Green Chain and Thames Path (I am a compulsive leaflet gatherer) and hit Google, but could do with some extra suggestions.

So far I’ve come up with:

Thames Path: Hampton Court to Putney: 16 miles

Thames Path: O2 Dome to London Eye: 11 miles

Green Chain: Thames Barrier to Oxleas Woods (4 1/2 miles) +Oxleas Wood to Mottingham (4miles): tot 8 1/2 miles

Green Chain: Beckenham Palace Park to Dulwich Park: 7 miles

Circuit of Richmond Park: 7.5 miles

Capital Ring: Highgate to Stoke Newington + Stoke Newington to Hackney Wick: 5miles+ 4miles Includes disused railway through Crouch End

Lea Valley – anyone know how much of this is currently walkable, what with the Olympic site and that?

Silver Jubilee Walkway  : 15 miles. Topical, but largely involves

Diamond Jubilee Greenway walk: 37 miles (60km-geddit?) Maybe the Buckingham Palace to Victoria Park section? (basically Victoria to Victoria)

Ashdown Forest: would need to combine the Chetwood Vachery and Old Airstrip routes to make up the distance, but they do have an iPhone app, which is alone makes it worth it

Hastings Country Park: 5.9 miles, but could also fit in visit to new Jerwood Gallery

London Loop: 152 miles. Er, maybe not. Anyone want to recommend a good segment instead?

Seaford- Eastbourne: 13.1miles


I’d genuinely be interested in any more suggestions to try out. Ideally, walks need to be

– at least 7 miles,

– easily accessible from East Dulwich (SE22)

– places where it’s socially acceptable to wear stretchy fabrics and be slightly red and sweaty

– not full of dawdling pedestrians

– vaguely interesting and/or scenic**


Oh yes, and don’t forget to sponsor me


* It’s not just getting fit enough to do the walk that worries me, but getting fit enough to expose my stomach.

** Large expanses of urban wasteland are as scenic to me as pretty riverside paths.

  1. Thames Barrier Greenwich is good but the Thames path does not hug the Thames until beyond Deptford (though you’d miss St Nick’s church – Christopher Marlowe, Ancient Mariner and model for skull and cross bones on the Jolly Roger).

    Through Ladywell park and along the river is nice.

    Or get a train to Kent. Lovely country walks easily available and pub lunches if you don’t fancy picnics. I can lend you maps and walking books and show you routes. You can also tie in visits to National Trusts properties, such as Chartwell.

    • Yes, I’ve been thinking I really should hit Kent. Hardly ever take advantage of it. Would welcome suggested routes. Worried I might be a bit tempted by all the pubs though.

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