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This Week's Walks - Archive

Please see the Saturday Walker's Club This Week's Walks page.

This is an archive of walks done by the Saturday Walker's Club. You should only need to use this page if the SWC website is down.

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Sunday, 24 January 2016

Second Sunday Walk - Essex woods and fields

Extra Walk 158a – Ingatestone to Wickford
Length: 18.8km (11.7 miles) Toughness: 3/10

10:02 Ipswich train from Liverpool Street (Stratford 10:09) arriving at Ingatestone at 10.36.

Return trains from Wickford to Liverpool Street are at xx:10 and xx:40 (journey time 49 mins). Buy an off-peak day return to Wickford, which should be valid for the outward journey too, though you might be asked to buy a single ticket for the one stop section from Shenfield to Ingatestone.

The full 25km version of this pleasant and rewarding Essex walk, goes from Ingatestone to Battlesbridge. This shortened version, finishing in Wickford, is more suited to a winter walk.. It is still moderately long, but not too testing, and the short journey time should ensure that you can comfortably complete it before dusk. The walk initially traverses the Wid valley before ascending to the lunch stop in Stock, later going through woods and fields to Wickford, in a reversal of the start of Walk 157 (Wickford to Battlesbridge). The diversion to Wickford occurs halfway through the afternoon, so continuing the main walk to Battlesbridge is an option at that point if you reckon you still have sufficient energy and daylight available.

The recommended lunchtime pub is The Bakers Arms in Stock (01277 841831) and there are also two other pubs in the village. These are all reached fairly early in the walk, but if you prefer to press on, a possible later lunch pub is the Beauvoir Arms (01268 711115) in Downham, close to where the afternoon routes diverge. This is not mentioned in the walk directions, but if you follow the Alternative Ending in Wickford directions, towards the end of the first paragraph turn left instead of right on the pavement to reach the pub in 350 metres Retrace your steps afterwards. From this pub there’s only another 5km to do, so you can afford to linger over lunch. There are several possible tea stops around the High Street in Wickford, but these have not yet been researched, so it would be helpful if someone could post a report on them on this walk’s Feedback page.

You will need to download the Walk Directions, and follow the Alternative Ending printed at the end of the main walk directions.


David Colver said...

n=Six on this walk, two having driven, one of those coming from as far away as Ramsgate. w=Initial_murk_and_drizzle_gave_way_slowly_to_hints_of_sun_only_to_become_overcast_again_in_the_afternoon.

We didn't bother to book at the pub as the posting described it as being reached fairly early in this walk. That's true of the full route. On the shorter variation specified to allow for winter darkness, the stop is only just short of the half way point. Perhaps a little slowed by the inevitable mud, we arrived at about 1pm, by which time the place was commendably full of locals. The restaurant part was booked solid, but we were made welcome at a table by the bar. Prices were reasonable for good sized portions of food that would be of noticeably above average quality for those that like their food strongly salted.

Tea was taken in a branch of Costa Coffee in Wickford, allowing for a return on the 1710 train.

I don't think any of us would place this walk in our SWC Hall of Fame, but it's a decent and varied route only a short distance out of London.

Anonymous said...