Waterlink Way (Lower Sydenham to Greenwich) – Longer walks start from Ravensbourne (Rail) or Arena (Tram)
Length: 9.7 km (6.0 mi) [longer walks possible, see below; several dropout points en route]
Net Walking Time: ca. 2 ¼ hours
Toughness: 1 out of 10
Three different start points: the Arena route ends at Lower Sydenham rail, the start of the main walk; the Ravensbourne route ends 5 mins into the main route at the first linear park. With some luck all groups get to that park at the same time…
· Lower Sydenham start: take the 12.37 Hayes (Kent) train from Charing X (12.40 W’loo East, 12.46 LBG), arriving Lower Sydenham at 13.01.
· Arena Tram start (one stop from Elmers End Rail): start at 11.45, for that the 11.07 Hayes (Kent) train from Charing X should suffice, it arrives Elmers End 11.38, the tram leaves 11.41.
· Ravensbourne start: take the 11.16 Sevenoaks train from Blackfriars (calls Elephant & Castle, Denmark Hill, Peckham Rye, Nunhead etc.), arrives Ravensbourne at 11.47.
Finish is at Cutty Sark DLR or Greenwich Rail (trains via LBG to Cannon Street or Blackfriars).
The route connects a number of attractive parks and green spaces in South East London, while following the Pool and Ravensbourne Rivers. It follows parts of the well-waymarked Waterlink Way, the London-part of the National Cycle Network Route connecting Eastbourne to the Thames. Large stretches of those rivers have in recent years been re-naturalised or at least sympathetically embedded in landscaped linear parks such as Ladywell Fields and Brookmill Park, and as such the route makes for a pleasant outing in a densely populated part of London, even though some formerly highly industrialised areas such as Deptford as well as some densely built-up areas such as Catford and Lewisham are passed through.
The Waterlink Way is a shared cycle-/footpath all the way through and as such avoids public footpaths. The route described diverts from the waymarked route where a better alternative for walkers exists.
Shorter: The walk route runs past a few railway and DLR stations (Catford/Catford Bridge, Ladywell, Lewisham, Elverson Road and Deptford Bridge), enabling an earlier finish or later start.
Longer: The Waterlink Way goes through some attractive walking terrain further south than Lower Sydenham:
· South Norwood Country Park, where it follows one of the Pool River’s tributaries, and Cator Park in New Beckenham (for that option join the Arena start, this adds 5.1 km);
· and it also has a spur from further up the Ravensbourne in pretty Beckenham Place Park (for that option join the Ravensbourne start, this adds 4.3 km and 60m ascent).
1 pub, 1 pizzeria, 3 cafés/cakeries and a deli in Ladywell
(4.5 km from the start), recommended are The Ladywell Tavern
and Le Delice
boulangerie, patisserie and café.
several options en route and plenty options in Greenwich, check the pdf.
, walk directions
, height profile
and gpx/kml files