Sunday, 29 April 2012

The End

I am so stupidly proud of this I might frame it. And although I could have just printed it off the website I'm very glad I asked them to send it to me- check out the silver seal! Thank you so much to everyone who walked with me (or put up with me chatting on about the Capital Ring for about six months).

So who fancies this?

Saturday, 21 April 2012

Part 8 Hackney Wick to Woolwich

So on Easter Saturday I met up with friends and family for the last of the Capital Ring walks. The weather was overcast and the route one of the least glamourous but the company was fantastic. From left to right: Emerson, Simon, Laura, Anna (my mum) Zippy, Steve, Christina (my sister) and Andrew

We started off in the shadow of the Olympic buildings
and soon came across our first obstacle
But after a short diversion we were back on track and on the Greenway. Or a big covered sewer heading out of the city.
More Olympics
There isn't much on the Greenway to report. Not the most beautiful park land and at times not the most pleasant smelling but there are some interesting buildings.
Yet another ornate Victorian pumping station. This has also doubled as Arkham Asylum in Batman films
View across to Canary Wharf
The best bit about this walk was the truly exceptional quality of the snacks. Hummous, carrot salad, crisps, home-made fudge, vegan ginger cake, earl grey tea, home-made feta and courgette muffins and Easter cakes!

Although we didn't have the most salubrious location to eat them
Off the Greenway, across a huge road and into some better scenery. There was also an exotic tree trail in this park.
And that was the end of walk 14! Just one more to go.
We found some outdoor gym equipment 
And eventually the river
Only two miles to go!
Really didn't feel like you were in London any more...
More snacks! They were amazing. And I forgot to mention the flapjack. There was apple and pear flapjack too.
And the final stretch along the river
Although you kind of got the feeling they didn't necessarily want you there...
Over the locks
We got to the crossing and we assumed we would have to use the ferry. But despite it looking like a building site the foot tunnel was open and we could finish the walk by walking underneath the Thames!
And up the other side
Christina had made a paper chain finish line
The group at the end
And me. 78 miles and  6 months later. Back in Woolwich

We celebrated with a drink and then took the river boat home
London. I love you.

Wednesday, 4 April 2012

Part 7 Highgate to Hackney Wick

Sunday 25th March was a beautiful day.

There was apple flapjack
and fabulous company in the form of Simon, Emerson and So-Shan.

We started in Highgate
Walking along a disused railway line

that had been turned into a nature reserve.

Disused platforms.
There was also loads of graffiti. I like to think there are graffiti artists who just really love nature and this was a way of them combining both of there interests at one time.

Trains to Scotland
And off the railway track and into Finsbury Park. Where people with strong North London accents were playing American football

We then walked along the New River (actually a 400 yr old canal) until the police tape meant we had to turn back and take a detour through Britain's biggest housing estate...

But we made it back to the route
Reservoir regeneration
This is the second ridiculously ornate Victorian pumping station on the route. Although this one they've converted into a climbing centre so you can climb up the towers.

Then more pretty parks. This is Clissold Park in Stoke Newington

We stopped for lunch in Stoke Newington for perhaps the best snack/food of all the walks so far. Chick pea and tahini burger with mango chutney and salads from The Blue Legume. Everyone else's lunch was of similar food-porn standards.

Then after lunch it was onto Abney Cemetery. Where the founder of the Salvation Army is buried

Unlike Highgate Cemetery this one is long disused and is now a nature reserve.

And that was the end of the first part

Next we walked through more housing and past mosques, synagogues and schools. Including this school which had some interesting poetry on the floor outside. Creative similes and spellings...

And into another park and out to Walthamstow Marshes

These people were protesting against the Olympics constructing a training building here and afterwards demolishing it and undertaking improvement works on the habitat. They thought the best way to protest against a beautiful natural space being temporarily utilised for something else was to play intrusively loud music across the flats to disrupt everyone's experience and enjoyment of a beautiful natural space. Ah well.

Walthamstow Marshes turned into Hackney Marshes and the Olympic site grew bigger on the horizon

Until we reached it. Stadium behind some tired but happy (I hope) walkers
And now there is only 8.4 miles to go! Final walk is Saturday 7th April. Would be lovely if you wanted to come along.