A month or so ago I described, briefly a walk I undertook from St Pancras Station, along the Regent’s Canal to Regent’s park and then south via Hyde, Green and St James’ Parks to Westminster and across Lambeth Bridge. Friends and former work colleagues with who I walk a couple of times a year asked me to organise something in central London to compensate for the lack of opportunities to go somewhere outside the capital with any confidence. I had this idea for a circular walk but that first section was 15 kilometres so I thought that would do.
However I was keen on the loop, so today, in the blistering sunshine, decent heat and increasing humidity (actually it was a bit sweaty but also lovely) I did the rest of the loop.
I’m not very good at judging distances but with these appy things on my phone I’d measured the first one so I set the route mapper as I descended from the number 3 bus at Lambeth Palace – London residence of the Arch Bish of Cantab, and next to the delightful Tradescant Garden Museum – if you are looking for something to do when you’re next in London, add it to your list.
My route took me along the south bank – a veritable tourist trap though not as crowded as it would have been pre Covid – across Tower Bridge and along the Thames Path as it hugged the embankment and Wapping High Street.
I’ve never walked this bit and it was delightful. There are some famous, or maybe infamous pubs here – the Captain Kidd, the Prospect of Whitby, the Town of Margate
and many of the curious little passages between the buildings leading to steps down to the river where you can go exploring at low tide though don’t get caught out.
One of the things I never get used to is brought home hereabouts. This is a picture of Canary Wharf’s many towers. For all the world it seems to be on the far side of the river but it is less than two miles away and one the same side. The meander of the Thames is well known but it’s a veritable trompe d’oeil at ground level.
The river hugging piece ends at Limehouse basin where the Regent’s Canal – remember him? – joins the Thames via its final lock. I followed the delightful towpath back to St Pancras and caught a train home.
And my mapper? It told me I’d walked 20 and a bit kilometres. Just as well I didn’t propose the whole thing to my team.
I will post more details of some of the features when we do the first section of the walk, but this is a taster. If you’re ever in town and want a guide to show you just why London is not only the greatest but most intriguing city in, well, the South East of England, just drop me a line!