Dave Sergeant

The Green London Way is a walking route of 110 miles length around London split into 18 sections. It follows much of the route of the 78 mile long Capital Ring but has some new sections. The Green London Way is largely the work of one man, Bob Gilbert, who is a supporter for the protection of urban open spaces and public access. His book, The Green London Way, outlines each section with detailed description of the historic and wildlife aspects of each section and is being used as I walk the route.

Green London Way Walk 13 - South Kenton to Hendon Central - May 28th 2021

Continuing my wander along the Green London Way on what looked like a fine day weatherwise. This leg, although it starts and ends at the same points as the Capital Ring, is very different.

After a non eventful trip to Waterloo I caught the Bakerloo line to South Kenton where I had stopped last week. I had forgotten how long this trip takes and with the service to Harrow and Wealdstone now just four trains an hour it was gone 11am when I alighted. The first part of the walk followed that of Capital Ring section 10, first through Preston Park and a bit of urban sprawl of Preston itself before turning into woodland running parallel to the tube line. Then into open parkland heading for Barn Hill.

Another bit of woodland and a steep climb to reach the summit of Barn Hill and the big lake there. At the trig point I left the Capital Ring and headed downhill.

More woodland including this magnificant line of lombardy poplars then after crossing the intrusive busy Fryent Way to reach large areas of open meadows with rich wild flowers and views of the suburbs of London in Fryent Country Park.

A little more woodland and a lovely oak tree then another climb, briefly rejoining the Capital Ring for a few yards, up to the summit of Gotsford Hill, the fourth hill on these two legs of the walk and with magnificant views of Harrow in the distance.

A short stretch of suburbia follows passing through West Hendon before reaching open space again with more impressive oak trees.

Now a somewhat muddy path running parallel to and eventually reaching Brent Reservoir, otherwise known as Welsh Harp. Some bird spotters in the hides along here.

This is new. When I did the Capital Ring in 2018 the reservoir was crossed on the busy Cool Oak Lane with a special button for pedestrians to stop the traffic over the adjacent narrow bridge. Pedestrians now have a magnificant new bridge all to themselves and it seems well used. Although the Green London Way follows the Brent Reservoir a short way further on and then takes you past Brent Cross Shopping Centre I decided to forego that pleasure and took the equally urban Capital Ring route up to the centre of Hendon and a pub for lunch which was conveniently near Hendon Central tube station. Crossing the M1 dispersed all peace and quiet. After a nice lunch I took the tube back to Waterloo and home after another nice walk.

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