Dave Sergeant

This walk from Inner London Ramblers is a circular walk around Hampstead Heath. It covers areas I have done on previous walks of the Green London Way and Fleet River but also covers Parliament Hill. I also had a short visit inside Kenwood House.

The walk starts at Hampstead station then a walk through Flask Walk and along Willow Road to enter the heath opposite 2 Willow Road, the Modernistic house built by Erno Goldfinger and now owned by the National Trust which I visited some years ago. Currently closed for the winter months. Then along to the two Hampstead Ponds.

Then across and up Parliament Hill,98m, which offers good views of the capital. It is named after being used by Parliamentary forces during the Civil War as a defence point for London.

Along to the Highgate ponds and the No 1 pond. Then to Millfield Lane, a pleasant traffic free lane running alongside the Heath and with the entrance to the Ladies-only bathing pond.

Further on the grounds of Kenwood House which I have passed several times but not been inside. They were busy installing Christmas lights for their special evenings and several of the pathways were closed as a result. I had to do a short diversion over somewhat soft grass. I went inside, the house is now used as an art gallery with paintings from the collection of the Earl of Iveagh. The first floor was, according to the volunteer I chatted to, not normally open on Fridays but was today and housed the Suffolk collection.

Leaving the house I headed towards the eastern side of the heath, firstly to Wood Pond at the bottom of the valley and then Viaduct Bridge, built by Sir Thomas Manyon Wilson for his abandoned plans of housing in the heath.

The building with a conical roof is an ice house. Soon after here I left the heath and made my way back to Hampstead where I lunched in the Holly Bush before making my back to Waterloo on the tube.

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