Capital Ring 10 & 11 – Hendon to Highgate

Fine weather again today, so I continue my Capital Ring Walk.

It was a fast journey to Hendon, helped by the new Thameslink timetable with regular services from London Bridge northwards.

Hendon Station itself is fairly uninspiring, and being right next to the M1, fairly noisy.

The remainder of Section 10 is uninspiring Hendon Suburbia, with many busy roads to cross.

Eventually a footbridge goes over the Northern Line near Hendon Central station and the end of Section 10 is reached:

Section 11

At last, some green as I go through Hendon Park:

But this doesn’t last long as the route is diverted along the A406 North Circular Road due to a river footbridge closed “for health and safety reasons”:

The route now follows a good path alongside the River Brent:

Further on, the path was ‘closed’, but it looked fine to me, so I used it rather than walking along the busy and noisy North Circular Road:

The route then follows the course of Mutton Brook and then into the pleasant Hampstead Garden Suburb:

Hampstead Garden Suburb was promoted by Dame Henrietta Barnett in 1907 and principally planned by Sir Raymond Unwin, with contributions from many leading architects of the day. Purposefully designed to create a range of house styles and sizes, the suburb offers many open spaces, pedestrian walkways and beautiful mature trees.

The route continues along Mutton Brook through the attractive Northway Gardens:

and then into Lyttleton Playing Fields:

Then it’s back to the streets through East Finchley:

East Finchley station was originally opened as East End station in 1867 by the Great Northern Railway. It was later demolished and re-built to an art deco design by Charles Holden and Underground services began running in 1939.

Shortly after the station, the route goes through Cherry Tree Wood:

More streets, then into the very nice Highgate Wood:

Owned and managed by the Corporation of London, Highgate Wood with its 28 hectares of ancient woodland probably dates from the last ice age. Part of the Ancient Forest of Middlesex, the wood features in both the Domesday Book and more recently the Bishop of London’s estate.

Then across a road into Queen’s Wood:

From the other side of this wood, it’s a short walk to Highgate Tube Station. I’m amused that the last four stations that I’ve used on this walk all begin with H – Hanwell, Harrow, Hendon and Highgate!

6.5 miles of Capital Ring walking today and 2 Geocaches found.

For more information on the Capital Ring, see

Capital Ring 9 & 10 – Harrow to Hendon

Time for me to continue my Capital Ring Walk.

An fast and easy journey back to Harrow, though using the tube is never my favourite. It was a bad plan to break the ring at Harrow though, as the walk goes over the top of the hill, with the station at the bottom. So the first task was to climb back up the hill:

Then we’re back into Harrow Village, mostly dedicated to school buildings:

At the bottom of the hill are the school playing fields:

At the end of these is the only stile on the Capital Ring walk:

Across the road is the uninspiring Northwick Park:

then under the West Coast Main Line at South Kenton station:

This is the end of Section 9.

Section 10

Preston Park is reached after plodding through a few streets:

Then more suburbia to the wilderness of Fryent Country Park:

The path climbs up and winds around Barn Hill:

There is a white painted ‘trig’ point, originally used in mapping the land. There was an 18th century folly here but now there is only a seat giving views of Wembley Stadium and, on a good day, St. Paul’s Cathedral and the Telecom Tower. Barn Hill, rising to 282 feet (86 metres) above sea level, was landscaped as part of the Wembley Park estate in 1793
by the famous landscape gardener Humphry Repton and is one of the best surviving examples of his early work. The Lombardy Poplar Avenue, which gives Barn Hill its
distinctive skyline, was planted in about 1935, possibly to commemorate the Silver Jubilee of King George V. You can just see the ring of Wembley Stadium in the background.

Dropping back down the hill, the path climbs to yet another viewpoint:

You can just see the spire of Harrow-on-the-Hill church on the hill in the distance, which is where I started todays walk.

Fryent Country Park is a surprising and pleasant wilderness so close to London:

Wembley Stadium is still visible behind the trees:

Back to streets, then to the curiously named Welsh Harp Open Space, which borders Brent Reservoir:

Then it’s back to pavement walking to Hendon Station:

This has Thameslink services, so I was able to avoid the tube on the return journey.

7.8 miles of Capital Ring walking today and NO Geocaches found (unusually, there were none placed on this part of the Capital Ring).

For more information on the Capital Ring, see

Castle Museum

We visited the Castle Museum in York today. We’ve been there before, but that was many years ago…

Still lots of lovely recreations from history.

And more modern stuff from the 60’s and 70’s.

An interesting visit.

Settling in at York

We found a pub with many unusual nooks, and a small garden complete with bunting.

The Inn we are staying at is called the Judges Lodgings. It has the most comprehensive beverage selection I’ve seen in a hotel room for ages, including a flask of fresh milk and a teapot. With a cosy shaped like a judge’s wig!

Then we met Lucy for supper in yet another pub, this time with a Ruby mild beer for me and reasonable tea for Lucy.


We’re in York for the weekend. A smooth journey on the train:

After checking in to our hotel (well, posh pub), we walked around the city walls.

All of which made us thirsty enough for a beer:

Which was described as a blonde creamy mild! It went down well though.

Capital Ring 8 & 9 – Hanwell to Harrow

Another nice day, so time for me to continue the Capital Ring Walk.

The journey back to Hanwell was uneventful, but crossing London always takes a bit more time than the journeys I’ve so far done for the Capital Ring.

It was a short walk through the streets back to Churchfields Recreation Ground:

The walk again follows the River Brent, which is in the trees to the left of this photo:

Lovely walking, and eventually the river is crossed again:

Finally, after crossing a road, we’re in the more formal Perivale Park:

But this all comes to an end when the A40 Western Avenue is reached. Luckily there’s a footbridge:

then suburban streets into Greenford itself:

This is the end of Section 8.

Section 9

After some busy roads at Greenford, the path goes along the side of the Westway Shopping Centre:

and then rejoins the tranquility of the Grand Union Canal:

After crossing over the canal, it’s countryside again for the climb over Horsenden Hill:

Horsenden Hill at around 275 feet (84 metres) provides one of the finest natural viewpoints in London and is a popular kite-flying spot. On a clear day, looking west, you can see the Chiltern Hills, while to the north lies Harrow-on-the-Hill with the spire of St. Mary’s Church. During World War I, the summit came to the fore with the siting of an anti-aircraft gun pulled by a horse – a defence against German airships. 2,500 years ago, Iron Age people settled on Horsenden Hill leaving behind large amounts of pottery. The Iron Age settlement is now a Scheduled Ancient Monument.

Then it’s back to suburbia at Sudbury Hill:

which leads into Harrow itself:

Harrow Village (mostly school buildings) are reached after yet more uphill:

Over the years, Harrow School has grown to occupy much of the village, with buildings scattered in all directions. On Church Hill is the original school building; a plaque says it was finished in 1619. Harrow School was established in 1572 by John Lyons, a local farmer and landowner. The pupils (all boys) can often be seen scurrying between buildings, wearing their distinctive straw boaters; there are 800 pupils spread around in 11 boarding houses in the village. As one of Britain’s foremost public schools, over the years it has educated many leading notables, including Winston Churchill, Pandit Nehru, Lord Byron, Richard Brinsley Sheridan and Anthony Trollope.

It was then a walk back down the hill to Harrow-on-the-Hill Station:

Then two tube journeys and a fast train to home to Orpington.

6.5 miles of excellent (though hilly) Capital Ring walking today and 1 Geocache found.

For more information on the Capital Ring, see