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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

Sunday, 24 June 2018

Sunday Walk: Leigh (on Sea) Folk Festival / Benfleet Circular (via Leigh on Sea)

Benfleet to Leigh-on-Sea / Benfleet Circular
Short walk: 3.5 miles difficulty: 1/10 (with castle: 4 miles, 3/10), or longer 9.8 mile circular walk.
Both these options cover different territory to last Saturday's Canvey Island walk.
The short walk along the Essex shoreline coincides with Leigh Folk Festival and is getting to be a regular feature. Once there, you'll find free stages along the waterfront as well as artists in other venues. Athough free, there will be collection buckets and merchandise.
Any grumpy cats who just want a proper walk with no entertainment involved whatsoever, can do the circular walk via Benfleet Down. Do it all or use the morning section for a more energetic approach to the festival. Your choice.
The walks start differently from the station so don't tag on to the wrong group. (We know what you're like!)
Trains. Get a return to Leigh-on-Sea (not to be confused with any of the other Lees and Leighs in the south-east).
The 10:23 Shoeburyness train from Liverpool Street is suggested for both walks. (Stratford (London) SRA 10:30, Barking 10:39, arriving Benfleet at 11:09). This assumes you'll be castling, picnicking or circling. If taking the shortest route, you could take a later train. Trains are half-hourly.
(Slower stopping trains leave from Fenchurch St. The 10:04 to Southend would get you to Benfleet for 11:04 - calls Limehouse 10:08, West Ham 10:13, Upminster 10:27).
Returning from Leigh on Sea, the fastest trains are at xx:56, xx:26 to Liverpool Street with slower ones at xx:43, and xx:13 to Fenchurch Street. Trains leave Benfleet 4 or 5 minutes later. If we have any night owls, the last train is at 22:56 arriving Fenchurch St at 23:46. For maximum feather retention, night owls should avoid any carriages with grumpy cats in.
Get your directions for the short walk here. Most of it is through Hadleigh Castle Country Park. Along the way you have the option to turn left in the direction of the castle ruins, a good place for a picnic (you can get food in Leigh but things can get busy). Note the railway station on your way into Leigh – that’s where you will be leaving from.
The directions for the circular walk are here. This shares the same picnic spot as the short walk (Hadleigh Castle) and suggests Leigh-on-Sea for lunch. As mentioned above, Leigh’s waterfront pubs and eateries will be busy today, and you might accidentally hear some music, but you could explore uphill, away from the festival, round the Broadway area. The rare breed centre at Hadleigh Farm  is close to the walk route ...and...get this.....Hadleigh Farm's tea room does lunches.
On the return to Benfleet, you pass a possible tea stop on a boat, the Barge Gladys. It serves simple meals, craft beers - and tea and coffee on request. There are more opportunities in Benfleet High Street. The Hoy and Helmet has received good reviews.

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