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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

Saturday, 20 June 2020

Shorter alternative - Otford Circular

I don’t know how this is going to work, but since (at very short notice) walk posting seems to have been resumed by some, let’s try an experiment. T=3.290

Meet at 11.20 in the car park of Otford station. Trains are available to get you there from Victoria (Dep 10.25 arrive 11.00) or Blackfriars (dep 10.16 arrive 11.18), or you may think it better, if you are able, to follow government advice and drive

Please read the new rules in the box above. We will split as rapidly as possible into groups of six, and walk socially distanced, as per government guidelines. 

As ever on our walks you are responsible for your own route finding. I suggest as a suitable walk Otford Circular via Shoreham (SWC walk 290: 8.7 miles)....... but other walks are possible - eg Otford Circular via Romney Street (Book 1, walk 43: 7.5 miles), Otford to Eynsford (Book 1, walk 23: 8.8 miles) or you could even do the Eynsford Circular (SWC walk 59: 13.4 miles) from there

You should exchange contact details with those you walk with for contact tracing purposes (though note that only people that coronavirus cases are in contact with for the two days before they get symptoms are traced).

You should bring all refreshments you might need for the walk, though last weekend I did notice somewhere in Otford doing takeaway teas. The Hospices of Hope shop is boarded up (for refurbishment, I have been told).

Trains back are at 29 and 59 to Blackfriars, 26 and 56 to Victoria


Walker said...

8 of us met in Otford station car park. Most opted to do a customised circular walk via Eynsford, cutting across the slopes of Fackenden Down (which was well stocked with orchids and marbled white butterflies) and on to Romney Street via two good hill climbs. From there along the valley top, where we lunched on a flower-covered hillside, then down to Eynsford station.

We avoided the village, cutting straight down to Lullingstone Roman Villa. Hereafter the route got very busy with families who had parked at Lullingstone. Lots were picnicking on the hillside near the visitor centre (whose toilets were open, but not its cafe) and the car park was overflowing. We had a sit down on the hillside too and discussed army foot care techniques. Setting off on the Darent Valley Path we discovered that the lavender farm had set up a tea kiosk. It seemed a pity not to reward such enterprise and two of us had a tea and one a lemonade. They had attached the card machine to a wooden baton which was held out to you - very clever. The lavender was mostly not out, but starting in places.

The path from there to Shoreham was still busy with families (Shoreham being another popular parking spot) - uncomfortably so, I thought. I fell behind my companions here, and then ran into another SWC walker who had missed us by ten minutes at the start and was doing the Otford via Shoreham walk. So n=9 on the walk in total. She reported that the vineyard in Shoreham was serving both wine and pizza - takeaway, but with outside tables. I do not know if the rest of the group got any drinks in Otford, but some tea outlets did seem to be doing takeaway when we passed through in the morning. I diverted instead up onto Fackenden Down for more butterfly watching In the golden evening light.

Oh, and the weather was w=increasingly-sunny-and-warm.

Brian said...

Just a huge vote of thanks to Walker for posting this walk and gently encouraging us to follow his customised circular route to Eynsford and back.

We dealt with the need for possible future contacts by nominating one person to collect names and phone numbers (hopefully not needed) and enjoyed a glorious day. Wish we'd known about the wine and pizza at Shoreham!

Walker said...

You are very welcome. It was so nice to be out with the group again. I am sorry I lost you guys towards the end. I was trailing a bit on the way into Shoreham and then I ran into Number Nine as described, and we had a bit of a chat. I presume you all found your way to the end OK....