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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.

Blog Archive

Friday, 14 April 2017

Good Friday Walk - a Pilgrimage to Canterbury

Book 1 Walk 28 - Chilham to Canterbury

Length: 17.7 km (11 miles)
Toughness: 3 out of 10

Either London Victoria: 09-22 hrs Canterbury West train
           Arrive Chilham:  11-17 hrs

Or      London St Pancras:  10-08 hrs  Margate train
          Arrive Ashford International:  10-46 hrs
          Change and leave on train from Victoria to Canterbury West:  11-05 hrs
          Arrive Chilham:  11-17 hrs


From Canterbury West: 25 mins past the hour direct to St Pancras
                                         47 mins past the hour, changing at Ashford International, for St Pancras
                                         47 mins past the hour direct to Victoria
From Canterbury East to Victoria25 mins past the hour, direct (1 hr 39 mins)

Rail ticket: buy a day return to Canterbury stations
You will need to pay the high speed supplement if travelling from or to St Pancras

We always used to post this walk over Easter in bygone years, but it is four years since it has had an outing on Easter Sunday, and seven years since a posting on Good Friday. If you have no family, church, or other commitments today, why not give yourselves a real treat and come on this lovely walk in the Kent countryside, which terminates in the cathedral city of Canterbury.

Leaving Chilham you soon head across fields and farmland to Chartham village where you follow the Stour Valley walk beside the Great River Stour. You then detour to avoid a closed railway crossing before heading up an apple orchard, through woods and more orchards to the village of Chartham Hatch, and lunch at the (usually excellent) Chapter Arms. Please 'phone ahead with numbers (your e.t.a is 1 pm)  01227-738340.

After lunch you walk through more woods and orchards before you cross over the A2 road on a footbridge and enter Church Wood. At the top of the wood a new detour avoids the calf deep, muddy and at times impassable path through Luckett's Farm, and you enter Blean Woods Nature Reserve and the extensive grounds of the University of Kent, before walking between the university buildings. You now find yourself on a hill with a fine view below of Canterbury Cathedral.  You now descend into the City of Canterbury. If you wish to head home without visiting the City the directions take you to Canterbury West railway station. Otherwise, the directions take you on a mini-tour of the City to the Cathedral. Being Good Friday the Cathedral is closed today to visitors (usual entry fee £ 12) but is open - at no cost - to anyone wishing to attend one of  today's services: Choral Evensong is at 5-30 pm, and lasts approx.30 mins, allowing you plenty of time to take tea before the service.

After your tour of the City, the directions are easy to follow to Canterbury East railway station, or back to Canterbury West for your journey back to London.

Walk Directions here: L=1.28

Next Week, Tuesday 18 April: a new walk from Amberley, heading westwards - jfk.


Sarah H said...

beware the goats!

Walker said...

N=39 on this walk, possibly a couple more. A nice surprise was that it was w=fairly-sunny-in-the-morning-though-cloudier-later. Another nice surprise was that the apple blossom was full out, and so was one bluebell wood before lunch, which had a really intense carpet of flowers. A couple of other bluebell woods in the afternoon were rather less advanced however and the many wood anemones on this walk (it would be a great WA walk) were on the way out.

The pub coped well with around half the group stopping for lunch. We had phoned ahead, which they appreciated. Alas they had made up a table for us inside, so only the sandwich eaters having their post-prandial drinks got to enjoy the lovely garden out back with a view of the orchards.

I found the walk less scenic in the afternoon. The attraction of apple orchards began to fail when we got lost in one vast tract of them. And apart from lots of lily in the valley in one spot - not a flower I ever see growing wild otherwise - the supposed charm of Blean Woods eluded me. But the last descent into Canterbury is always nice. Someone found a charming tea spot - the Boho Cafe? - which is oppposite the Patisserie Valerie. A good number of walkers then surprised me by rushing off to Evensong in the Cathedral.

Six of us stopped for dinner at a pub called the Parrot and caught the 8.25 train back to St P. What a surprise to get home after a Saturday Walk and find that it is Saturday tomorrow and we can do it all over again.

Anonymous said...

Many thanks to Marcus for posting such a great walk and to all of the walkers who helped with the map reading.
A most enjoyable day.
Happy Easter to all 🐣.