Great Missenden to Amersham walk

The Chilterns, beech woods, and Little Missenden.


This is a list of previous times this walk has been done by the club (since Jan 2010). For more recent events (since April 2015), full details are shown.

Date Option Post # Weather
Wed, 17-Jan-24 Great Missenden to Amersham 10
Sun, 12-Nov-23 Sunday Walk: Great Missenden to Amersham 6 almost entirely dry
Sat, 03-Jun-23 Rail Strike Combo: Chesham to Amersham via Great Missenden 7
Sat, 25-Feb-23 Saturday Walk - Great Missenden to Amersham 6 sunny chilly
Sun, 20-Feb-22 Sunday Walk: Great Missenden to Amersham
Sat, 04-Dec-21 Saturday Walk Amersham to Great Missenden - Old Amersham, Coleshill, Penn Wood, Toby's Lane to Little Missenden 8 lovely sunny crisp winter
Sat, 26-Sep-20 Saturday walk - Great Missenden to Amersham - A saunter in the Chilterns 20 sunny in the morning and then cloudy
Wed, 15-Jan-20 Wednesday Walk Amersham to Great Missenden - Coleshill, Penn Wood, Toby's Lane and Little Missenden 9 overcast until mid morning then sunny until
Sun, 20-Oct-19 Sunday Walk: Great Missenden to Amersham 2 sunshine
Wed, 16-Jan-19 Wednesday Walk Amersham to Great Missenden - Penn Wood, Toby's Lane and Little Missenden 10 steady rain
Sat, 10-Mar-18 Saturday walk - Great Missenden to Amersham - Chiltern views and lots of lunch options 20 overcast
Wed, 10-Jan-18 Wednesday Walk: Amersham to Great Missenden - The Chilterns, Beech Woods, Toby's Lane and Little Missenden 11 mostly sunny and very mild
Wed, 04-Jan-17 Wednesday Walk - Through the Chilterns and Little Missenden to Great Missenden 16 cloudier than promised
Mon, 02-Jan-17 Bank Holiday Monday Walk North - Great Missenden, Little Missenden, Amersham 15 clear blue sky
Sat, 05-Sep-15 Saturday Second Walk - Hills, views and villages in the Chilterns 10 Disappointingly cloudy
Sun, 26-Oct-14 Great Missenden to Amersham 6
Sat, 04-Jan-14 Great Missenden to Amersham 5
Sat, 15-Dec-12 Great Missenden to Amersham
Sat, 11-Aug-12 Great Missenden to Amersham
Sun, 11-Sep-11 Great Missenden to Amersham
Sat, 29-Jan-11 Great Missenden to Amersham
Sat, 20-Nov-10 Great Missenden to Amersham
Sat, 13-Mar-10 Great Missenden to Amersham
Sat, 26-Sep-09 Great Missenden to Amersham
Sat, 09-May-09 Great Missenden to Amersham
Thu, 01-Jan-09 Great Missenden to Amersham
Sun, 10-Feb-08 Great Missenden to Amersham
Sat, 02-Feb-08 Great Missenden to Amersham
Sun, 23-Dec-07 Great Missenden to Amersham
Sun, 28-Oct-07 Great Missenden to Amersham
Mon, 01-Jan-07 Great Missenden to Amersham
Wed, 17-Jan-24 : Great Missenden to Amersham 10

Length: 10.1 miles (16.3 km) 5/10

A Chilterns walk including a large beech wood, interesting churches and the village of Little Missenden. After a possible tea stop in Old Amersham, a short climb, another wood, then home. I've usually done this walk the other way round but thought we could try the original direction this time.

A couple of hazards to note (1) Toby's Lane (5-6 in directions) may well be flooded but it's possible to walk along the edge of the field to its left; (2) apparently there is a sink hole at Chapel Farm (point 15 in directions) – presumably something to do with HS2 - but there is a signposted diversion.

Travel: 0956 from Marylebone, arriving at Great Missenden 1040. Returns at 11 and 41 but Amersham is in TfL zone 9 with the Metropolitan Line also available if you have the right ticket (see walk page). Freedom/60+ Oyster holders only need a single from Amersham to Great Missenden.

Lunch: several possibilities are listed on the walk web page but the Squirrel pub in Penn Street 01494 257924 is recommended. The Hit or Miss 01494 713109 is also reported to be OK. Please use these links/numbers not the ones on the walk page which are out of date.

Tea: Quite a few possibilities in Old Amersham, see the walk page. Note that there's not much around Amersham station itself.

For walk directions, map and GPX click here


  • 18-Jan-24

    10 on the walk (with 1 running late doing Amersham to lunch & back). The group split at the sink hole diversion point, with 4 ahead of the main group following the gpx and the rest following the text on the diversion. No sink hole was encountered by the 4, who met the late runner at lunch, with one opting for the Squirrel ( for its £11 lunch with a drink option - not very busy and fast service). The others picnicked in the wood at the edge of the Green. Everyone was briefly together at lunch, but it was too cold for any waiting around. Two more ate at the Squirrel and some joined later for drinks. A fragmented afternoon followed with 2 of us getting a train just after 3pm, some stopping for tea in Old Amersham, not sure about everyone else. Pretty good underfoot with just one awkward stretch on Toby's lane with sitting water to get round.

Mr M Tiger
Mr M Tiger

16.3 km, 10.1 miles. Difficulty 5/10
A Chilterns walk including a large beech wood, interesting churches and the village of Little Missenden. After tea in Old Amersham, you reach the station via another wood.
Get the 09:57 Aylesbury Vale Parkway train from Marylebone arriving at Great Missenden at 10:40.
A rail return to Great Missenden will suffice. This limits you to Chilterns trains back from Amersham at xx:08 and 00:38.
Alternatively, a Tfl zones 1-9 travelcard (or Freedom Pass) plus a rail single from Amersham to Great Missenden on the way out would allow you to return by either tube or train (see walk intro). Tubes leave for Baker Street at xx:18 and xx:48.
The recommended pub is The Squirrel in Penn Street 01494 711291.
The nearby Hit or Miss is also suitable 01494 713109.
There is an earlier - possibly too earlier - pub in Little Missenden, The Red Lion 01494 862876.
Seasons Cafe Deli in Old Amersham - recommended but limited seating.
Old Amersham also has pubs. The Crown Inn and the Kings Arms are two.
10 minutes beyond the station, in Amersham itself, there’s a Mad Squirrel micropub on Sycamore Road.
Walk Directions: here

  • 12-Nov-23

    6 on a almost entirely dry day (until we got back to London).

    We approached St Peter & St Paul outside Great Missenden at exactly 11.00 o'clock, so waited (at distance) for the congregation outside the church observing the 2 minutes of silence and then starting a wreath laying ceremony.

    On up the downs and along field boundaries, where an oncoming couple forewarned us of a path closure. That came by Rowen Farm/Hyde Farm, which are on top of the line of the HS2 tunneling. There, we enquired a few people and got conflicting reasons for the path closure ("HS2", "something with water"). Only further along the (well signed) diversion a third couple of walkers knew what was going on: a large sinkhole had appeared 3 days ago, which everyone assumes has to do with the tunneling (it's not the first in the area, apparently). The hoardings around the site can be seen from the diversion and the diameter (of the site, not necessarily the hole) looked like 40m!

    Onwards then through woods and long fields, then down into the Misbourne Valley to Little Missenden. The service in the church had just finished and the vicar invited us in for coffee or tea, while also highlighting a TV screen with a 2 minute video on the history of the settlement and church and another one about the restoration of the wall murals. He also activated a projection onto the walls of what the full murals would have looked like hundreds of years ago. Impressive stuff, and with all this we never had any tea or coffee, but dutifully tapped the donation machine and shuffled out!

    The Squirrel pub was the aim for the (2) pub lunchers, although by now we knew they were fully booked. Before that came Penn Wood though, which was a proper riot of autumnal colours, and tempting as it was to stray off the rather direct SWC route through it and find a longer loop, the pub was calling. A mid-size table in the bar area was vacated just as we walked in, so we endulged the menu (roasts AND the normal menu can be ordered on Sundays), sat between the two roaring fireplaces. The picnickers all joined the table and (as we were still waiting for our meals) ordered deserts and/or coffees. After 80 or 90 minutes it was time to move on though.

    Amersham Station was reached in time for 3 to take the 16.48, while the other 3 retired to The Lounge up the High Street (tubes were not running all afternoon, due to a lack of drivers, I presume). All in, a glorious time for this walk, not too much trouble with mud and a heavy dose of luck with the weather (compared to forecast), as all we got in precipitation was a bit of spittle now and then.

Book 1 & 2 Doubleheader: Chesham to Amersham via Great Missenden t=1.5

Boy, these rail strikes are becoming, a little experimentation and exploration is in order! The proposed route combines two walks accessible by the Tube...
Tube: 9:19ish (arrive a bit early to be sure) Chesham bound Metropolitan train from London Baker Street -- arriving in Chesham at 10:19. Return tubes from Amersham are at 20 and 50 minutes past the hour.

Distance: About 16 miles/ 26 km
This experimental route combines a walk from Book 1 and Book 2 to connect two Tube Stations in the Chilterns during a day of extensive rail strikes. Book 2/Walk 4 short version provides a 6 mile route from Chesham to Great Missenden for lunch. After lunch, you then pick up Book 1/Walk 5 which will guide you to Amersham. You can take an afternoon break in one of the lunch pubs for that walk before reaching your final destination.... For more information on each of the walks, see Book 2/Walk 4 and Book 1/Walk 5.

Lunch: The Cross Keys in Great Missenden -- 6 miles/10km into the walk.
Tea: Various option in Old Amersham (see Book 1/Walk 5 for details).
Enjoy the walk!
  • 31-May-23

    Be prepared for large crowds of boisterous Mancunians on these tubes, going to and from the Cup Final at Wembley (kick-off 3pm).

  • 31-May-23

    When this combo was last posted Walker noted that you could shorten the morning section by diverting from the route at South Heath to follow a footpath south to just beyond The Hyde where merges with the route of the Great Missenden to Amersham walk. In effect it cuts out the loop through Great Missenden.

    After lunch, if you don't fancy the long climb from Little Missenden up to Penn Street you can simply follow the line of the River Misbourne into Amersham - a much shorter, and flatter, route.

  • 10-Jun-23


Length: 16.3km (10.1 miles) 4 out of 10
This lovely Chilterns walk, only 40 minutes from London by train, makes an easy outing at any time of year. The route is more open than most Chilterns walks, but there is one large beech wood, Penn Wood, which produces fine autumn colours. Other attractions include four interesting churches, the ancient village of Little Missenden, and Amersham’s surprisingly unspoilt old town, which is approached over a ridge with fine views. After tea, it is a 20 minute walk up through a wood to reach the station.
Trains: Get the 09.57 Aylesbury Vale Parkway train from Marylebone to Great Missenden (Harrow-on-the-Hill 1009), arriving 10.38.
Buy a day return to Great Missenden. (For 60+ etc pass holders, a single Amersham to Great Missenden will do, though others be aware that Amersham is in zone 9)
Return trains from Amersham are at 11 and 41 to Marylebone. Underground services to Baker Street go at 22 and 52 past.
Lunch: The recommended pub is The Squirrel in Penn Street 01494 711291
The nearby Hit or Miss is also suitable 01494 713109
Tea: You really need one of the places in Old Amersham, as there is not much by the station

  • 26-Feb-23

    Just 6 and a dog for this swc classic. A sunny chilly day. Firm underfoot. Scenery good. Snowdrops still out.

    A booking had been made for the Hit and Miss so that’s where we went. The meals seemed more Hit than Miss. Mr Tiger astounded everyone by having beer. Jaws dropped. Clocks stopped. But he drank it all down.

    2 and the dog sped off ahead. The rest continued later, still at a brisk pace.

    Seasons in Old Amersham was packed but they managed to cram us in (as we did the cake). Mmmm the cake. If only all cake was like that, there’d be no need for war.

    One more mountain to climb before the station. It was tough - if only we hadn’t had all that cake - but we gave it our best Julie Andrews. The 17:16 was packed but they managed to cram us in.

Mr M Tiger
Mr M Tiger
16.3 km 10.1 miles Difficulty 5/10.
A Chilterns walk including a large beech wood, interesting churches and the village of Little Missenden. After tea in Old Amersham, a short climb, another wood, then home.
Get the 09:57Aylesbury Vale Parkway train from Marylebone arriving at Great Missenden at 10:38.
Simplest option: a rail return to Great Missenden This limits you to the Chiltern trains back from Amersham at xx:11 and xx:41.
A Tfl zones 1-9 travelcard (or Freedom Pass) plus a rail single from Amersham to Great Missenden (see notes) would allow you to return by either tube or train. Tubes leave Amersham for Baker Street at xx:20 and xx:50.
The recommended pub is The Squirrel in Penn Street 01494 711291
The nearby Hit and Miss is also suitable 01494 713109
There are earlier (possibly too earlier) pubs in Little Missenden, The Red Lion 01494 862876 and The Crown 01494 862571
Seasons Cafe Deli in Old Amersham - recommended but limited seating
Old Amersham also has pubs. The Crown Inn and the Kings Arms are two.
Walk Directions: here

Book 1 Walk 5 (R) - Amersham to Great Missenden

Length: 16.3 km (10.1 miles)
Toughness: 5 out of 10 (a bit more when muddy)
London Marylebone: 09-57 hrs Chilterns service to Aylesbury Vale Parkway
Arrive Amersham: 10-32 hrs
Baker Street: take a Metropolitan Line u/ground train to Amersham to arrive by 10-30 hrs
Great Missenden to Marylebone: Chilterns service at 01 & 31 mins past the hour
Rail ticket An all zone travel card takes you as far as Amersham, so you will just need a single from Great Missenden to Amersham. Otherwise it's a day return to Great Missenden
This walk works well in either direction and today's walk is posted "backwards" or in reverse to the Book's Direction - for no particular reason !
From the newer part of Amersham the walk heads down to the Old Town before we head steadily uphill along the edge of a vast field (Gore Hill) which takes us down to the village of Coleshill. We continue over fields to the village of Winchmore Hill then on to the village of Penn, where we have the option of an early lunch (7 km into the walk) at The Squirrel pub or The Hit or Miss Inn - both are popular with SWC walkers. But today if you can control hunger pangs for a further 4 km the suggested lunch stop is in the pretty village of Little Missenden at the Red Lion pub - our e.t.a being 1.15 pm. Between Penn and Little Missenden we walk through Penn Wood then we have to negotiate Toby's Lane, a long bridleway - which can be soggy and or muddy in winter - and this bridleway takes us to a high point above Little Missenden. We enjoy a nice view as we drop down to the lunch pub.
After lunch we walk through the village past its interesting church (worth a visit) then head up a hill to a wood - Mantles Wood - which we walk through, then cross open fields and walk up through a horse stud farm before we walk along the edge of a series of fields to the outskirts of Great Missenden. Our route takes us past another interesting church before we drop down on paths which come out into the High Street of this town, where a number of tea shops and pubs await our custom - as noted in the Directions. The railway station is a few minutes walk from the refreshment stops.
Walk Directions are here: L=1.5
  • 03-Dec-21

    Just to point out that a travelcard needs to be valid to zone NINE to get to Amersham: a 1-6 travelcard only takes you to Moor Park. TFL 60+ passes are valid as far as Amersham. (That remark will have lost us the youth vote...)

  • 04-Dec-21

    7 of us travelled on the posted train, with 1 who left London thirty minutes earlier joining us in Old Amersham - so that made 8 .

    We enjoyed a lovely sunny crisp winter 's-day, which was an unexpected bonus for today' s Chilterns walk.

    In the morning we encountered lots of slippery mud but fortunately, by the time we reached Toby's Lane late morning, we found this notoriously waterlogged and muddy track completely dry and mud-free. For once walking along its carpet of fallen, colourful leaves was a delight. Leaving the lane, we descended grassy fields to the pretty village of Little Missenden, where its pub, The Red Lion, awaited our custom. All eight of us dined in a room to ourselves, which was a little chilly, but excellent, warming food soon arrived, in generous portions. As it had been St Andrew's Day earlier in the week, on the menu was haggis - and it was very good, too. The Timmy Taylors draught beer was also perfect - and so by the time we left the pub, all eight of us seemed more than satisfied with their luncheon experience.

    The short afternoon leg was also enjoyable, with the last of this year's leaf colour still in some trees in the woods, although leaves were now mostly on the carpet floor - softening our tread.

    On reaching Great Missenden 1 went straight to the railway station and caught the 16-01 hrs service. 3 of us took tea in Matildas, and our beer monitor went to the micro-brewery around the corner. All 4 of us took the 16-31 hrs service back to Marylebone. That left 3 who opted to continue their walk from Great Missenden to Wendover. They would have finished their walk in the dark - so I hope one of the adventurers posts a supplementary walk report letting us know how they got on.

    This turned out to be a lovely early winter's walk in winter sunshine. Top SWC company, too.

  • 04-Dec-21

    The three of us who walked on to Wendover had an atmospheric walk through the darkening woods. Our route took us along the South Bucks Way to Dunsmore, then down on direct paths to the lights of Wendover, which glittered like alien spaceships in the blackness.

    Walking in the dark is more interesting than you might imagine. About a third of the way in, the last dregs of the light gave an effect just like moonlight. Jupiter shone towards the south west. Some claimed to be able to see Pluto….

    Being an old’un, I needed a bit of faint torchlight after this, but younger eyes (or perhaps those with more carrot in their diet) kept the faith till the end. In Wendover we went to Shoulder of Mutton for a glass or two of hygge, and then caught the 19.25 train, fortified by further “supplies”

Length: 16.3km (10.1 miles) T=1.5
Toughness: 4 out of 10
9.57 train from Marylebone to Great Missenden, arriving 10.38.
Buy a day return to Great Missenden.
For walk directions click here, for GPX click here, for a map of the route click here.
I have slight nervousness in posting this walk, my nervousness being about the meet-up at the start, which will be in the car park (ie not on the platform please) of Great Missenden station. We must split with the utmost rapidity into groups of six and then stay split. This is no longer a matter of debate: £200 fines are possible. Possibly start thinking even on the train about who you plan to walk with. Sub-groups might include fast walkers, slow walkers, those that plan to have a pub lunch.
It now being autumn (gloom!), where better to be than in the Chilterns? This undemanding walk has lots of nice scenery, and a whole run of possible pubs, if any want to brave contact tracing and the new restrictions to use them. Otherwise, bring all the food and water you expect to need. Tea may be possible in Old or New Amersham (a man can dream...): at least a takeaway to have in the park?
Trains back from Amersham are at 09 and 39 to Marylebone, taking 37 minutes. Underground services to Baker Street go at 17 and 47 past, taking 49 minutes. I read somewhere that a normal rail ticket (eg a Great Missenden return) does work through the barriers at Baker Street (only: not other Underground stops), but have never tested this out.
  • 23-Sep-20

    Well done Walker for managing to post

  • Anonymous

    Please don't embarrass the SWC, and yourself, in these awkward times by being one of the usual suspects too lazy/entitled to take the instructions. Be prepared to make yourself a pod of one, rather than sponging.

  • Anonymous

    I rewrite my post above / below in case the anon poster is confused by my last post

    Well done Walker on managing to post on the new version (3) of the blogger. I had a go for a while but haven't quite cracked it yet


  • Anonymous

    Thank you, Walker. Will take instructions.

  • 23-Sep-20

    What browser are you using. Bridie? I found our webmaster's instructions did not work in Safari, but I could do it on Chrome. If you are trying to post and cannot, you could send me the text and I will post it for you. (Go into Blogger, then Settings, then Permissions if you don't have my email: it is listed there)

  • 26-Sep-20

    I must confess, dear reader, that I had a cunning plan in posting a Chilterns walk (apart from wanting to do one myself): namely that it might limit the number of walkers who turned up. In this I was a miserable failure. Some 20 got off the train. But by dispensing with the meet and greet we were able to disperse immediately into groups of less than six, thus keeping within the rules. What follows must therefore be a partial account of the experience of my “bubble”: other sub-groups may care to file their own report.

    Surprisingly it was a lovely sunny morning, and the scenery of this old favourite looked as pretty as it has ever done. I was with a “fast set” and they fairly whizzed through Little Missenden. I cast a longing glance at the garden of the Red Lion, which was festooned with empty tables. Left to myself I might have stopped for lunch there. Did anyone else do so?

    Instead we carried on up the bridleway, the one which in winter is often flooded. But at present its problem is that it has become very overgrown. It is not yet impassible, but it is a dull green tunnel and if someone does not take a strimmer to it soon it could become a problem.

    Passing through the woods, we came to the Squirrel, which was not at all busy: pretty much empty in fact. There was a great deal of palaver at the door and some confusion over procedures, but we were eventually seated in the garden and served at the table with reasonable efficiency. During lunch the skies clouded up and there were some drops of rain, but this never amounted to much. So sunny in the morning and then cloudy .

    Despite lingering a bit over lunch, we still got to Old Amersham at 3.20pm. We were able to get tea at Seasons cafe at an outside table. Feeling it was too early to finish, we then repaired to a pub. Here palaver had been elevated to performance art. Temperatures were taken on two different parts of each customer’s body, QR codes were scanned, and detailed instructions were given on how to and from the loo. The only thing the staff seemed to forget about was actually producing drinks, picking up a bottle of wine and bringing it and four glasses to the table seeming to take an age.

    Then up through the woods to the station. It felt like we were getting back to London very late. In fact it was only 7.30pm. So purely to support the beleaguered hospitality industry we had a very pleasant Thai meal in a moderately busy restaurant near Marylebone.

Book 1, Walk 5 (R) - Amersham to Great Missenden

Length: 16.3 km (10.1 miles)
Toughness: 4 out of 10

London Marylebone: 09-57 hrs Aylesbury Vale Parkway service
Arrive Amersham: 10-32 hrs

LT underground service from Baker Street to Amersham - to arrive in Amersham by 10-30 hrs


Great Missenden to Marylebone: 16-02, 16-32, 16-45, 17-02, 17-29, 18-04 and 18-35 hrs.

Rail ticket

Senior railcard holders, and holders of an all-zone LT travel card (Amersham is in zone 9) - you just need a single from Great Missenden to Amersham for your return journey. Other railcard holders - buy appropriate tickets from the boundary of the card you hold.

This walk works well in reverse, and although in winter you usually encounter "muddy bits" - with Toby's Lane often being waterlogged - you usually get through - and enjoy some nice views and very pleasant countryside along the way.
You can stop for lunch in the village of Penn at two very acceptable pubs - The Squirrel, and the Hit and Miss but if you can hold out for a further 50 minutes, lunch is best taken on the walk this way round at the Red Lion in Little Missenden (6.7 miles into the walk). Your e.t.a is 13-15 hrs.
After lunch the route takes you through woods and through a stud farm before following a number of field edges all the way to Great Missenden, where a number of cafes and pubs await your custom.
Walk Directions are here L=1.5
Using the + - toggle hide the Great Missenden to Amersham directions and just print off the (reverse walk directions) - Amersham to Great Missenden
  • 15-Jan-20

    The morning rain had just eased as 8 of us alighted from the Chiltern's train at Amersham, to meet up with 1 who had arrived by LT underground. So that is 9 on today's mudfest. The weather was overcast until mid morning then sunny until dusk. There was one sharp shower during our lunch break, whilst most of us were in the pub, but otherwise it was dry all day, with temperatures hovering around 8 degrees C - pleasant for winter's walking.

    The morning leg was muddy, with one seriously muddy section between Coleshill and Winchmore Hill. Penn Wood was not too bad as we slalomed around its large puddles, but Toby's Lane was a bit of a challenge. From top to bottom, the Lane was flooded. At the first kissing gate most of us left the Lane to walk along dry(ish) field edges parallel to the Lane, which was fine: others found alternative ways to dodge the puddles.

    Fortunately we booked ahead for lunch at the Red Lion in Little Missenden. On arriving at the pub at out booked time we found it more than busy with all tables taken: there were three large groups all dining, and enjoying themselves. No problem - the friendly management had their eye on a table for four for us which, when it soon became available, was extended to accommodate the six of us who chose to dine with them. Good, honest and tasty pub grub soon arrived - no pretentious ponce food here - and with its good selection of draught beers and a cosy interior, this pub is a little gem.

    Two of our three sandwichers set off as we dined, with the third joining us for a pint. So we were a group of 7 as we left the pub in pleasant sunshine to tackle the afternoon leg of the walk. Mud levels on the paths and tracks were less taxing than in the morning as we headed for Great Missenden - and tea. Cafe Twit was due to close ten minutes after we arrived, so instead we stopped at Matildas, which served all seven of us with a smile as we enjoyed a good cuppa - and for some of us, some excellent cakes.

    The 16-32 hrs service was on time and we were back in town soon after 5 pm.

    This is a most enjoyable walk, either way round, and today it was nice to be in the company of nine regular mid-week walkers, with good banter, as we took in some nice views along the route, on a mostly sunny day. So what if it was a bit muddy........ !

Mr M Tiger
Mr M Tiger
Book 1 walk 5
16.3 km 10.1 miles
Difficulty 5/10
This chilterns walk includes a large beech wood noted for autumn colour, four interesting churches and the village of Little Missenden. After tea in Old Amersham, you reach the station via another wood.
Get the 09:42 Aylesbury Vale Parkway train from Marylebone arriving at Great Missenden at 10:23.
The simplest ticket is a rail return to Great Missenden. This limits you to the Chiltern trains back from Amersham but there's plenty. (xx:06, xx:22, xx:36 and xx:52).
A Freedom Pass or a TFL zones 1-9 travelcard allows return by either rail or tube (Met Line to Baker Street at xx:17 and xx:47) but you would need an additional rail single (Amersham to Great Missenden) on the way out.
The recommended pub is The Squirrel in Penn Street 01494 711291.
The nearby Hit and Miss is also suitable 01494 713109.
There are earlier - possibly too earlier - pubs in Little Missenden, the Red Lion 01494 862876 and the Crown 01494 862571.
Seasons Cafe Deli in Old Amersham - recommended but limited seating. Open till 6.
Old Amersham also has pubs, the Crown Inn and the Kings Arms are two.
Walk Directions: here
  • David M

    Only 2 on a day of early sunshine but turning increasingly cloudy in the afternoon with a slight autumnal chill in the air. I was the only one on the scheduled 9.42 train from Marylebone and trekked along at what I thought was a reasonable pace only to be caught by another before lunch who was on the 10.12 train. I must say the conversation improved considerably at this point, as did the tendency to take a wrong turning. We had a pleasant picnic on the large green outside the Squirrel Pub in Penn Street and stopped for tea at Seasons Café in Amersham Old Town, which judging by the number of people there, would be a good place for SWC to hold shares in. The walk itself is lovely. There was some nice autumn colour and mushrooms everywhere. The route is dotted with good looking pubs and Little Missenden and Penn Wood are delightful. There is also quite an attractive final climb from Amersham old town to the railway station past St. Mary’s church and through the woods. Toby’s lane can be a bit dark and muddy, but not too bad at this time of year. On the 3.54 train back to Marylebone, we decided to look up notable residents of Amersham, Great and Little Missenden, and also Beaconsfield. Great Missenden surprised with not one, but two Prime Ministers, but Beaconsfield seems to be the place to live.

Book 1, Walk 5 (R) - Amersham to Great Missenden

Length: 16.3 km (10.1 miles)
Toughness: 4 out of 10 (more when muddy)

London Marylebone: 10-27 hrs Aylesbury service
Arrive Amersham: 11-02 hrs

LT Baker Street, Metropolitan Line: 10-06 hrs Amersham service
Arrive Amersham: 10-54 hrs
....and please wait for the Maryleboners

Return: Great Missenden to Marylebone: 16-02, 16-33, 16-45, 17-02, 17-29 and 18-04 hrs

Rail ticket: Great Miss. is one stop beyond Amersham which is in LT travel zone 1-9. Buy a travel card or use your freedom pass for the outward journey. You will then just need a single ticket between Great Miss.and Amersham for your return journey.

Today's walk is the Book 1, Walk 5 in reverse. Sections can be muddy if it has been raining heavily during January, but the worst bits - such as Toby's Lane - are usually navigable.

This is a pleasant walk with lots of variety and ideal for a winter's day. Your lunch stop will be in the picturesque village of Little Missenden at the Red Lion, some 6.7 miles into the walk. 'Phone ahead with numbers - 01494-862876. Your e.t.a 13-40 hrs. If you suffer from hunger pains earlier in the day there are two pubs in Penn Street, 4.2 miles into the walk

After lunch you have 3.4 miles to go to Great Miss. over pleasant varied countryside - woods and farmland - so try to leave the Red Lion by 15-00 hrs latest..

Tea stops in Great Miss. include the cafe in the Roald Dahl Museum and Story Centre, and Matildas. You also have the choice of two pubs - the Cross Keys and the recently reopened George Inn.
Walk Directions are here: L=1.5

Tips on following the Directions "backwards" - for those without hand-held gizmos - are here
  • 17-Jan-19

    10 of us disregarded the unfavourable weather forecast and set off from Amersham on this walk in steady rain , which stayed with us for most of the day, only relenting for the hour before lunch. No matter - we enjoyed good chat and banter - in English and French - as we made our way along the pleasant, varied route. The rain gingered up the mud in places, but it was always manageable. On arriving in Little Missenden, 5 of us dined at the cosy Red Lion, which served us good pub grub (and one healthy main fish course) promptly and with a smile, and the sandwichers all joined us for a drink after visiting the church, where early snowdrops were coming into flower in the churchyard. We set off after lunch together, to tackle the usual hills and inclines post prandial which cause havoc with ones digestion. By now the rain was falling heavily again, so we did not hang around on the afternoon leg as we headed for Great Miss. 4 went straight to the railway station whilst 6 of us stopped for tea at the cafe in the Roald Dahl centre (formerly known as Cafe Twit) where we dried off over a cuppa and cakes. On then to station and home on the 16-45 hrs train. It might have been wet but I believe we all had a most enjoyable day's walking. For me it was particularly nice to catch up with SWC friends of old after my long absence last year from mid-week walks.

  • 17-Jan-19

    I was going to congratulate you for your “true Blitz spirit”, Marcus, but perhaps the Trenches might be a better bit of history to invoke...

Length: 16.3km (10.1 miles)
Toughness: 4 out of 10

9.57 train from Marylebone to Great Missenden, arriving 10.38.

Buy a day return to Great Missenden. See below for notes on its validity on the return journey.

For walk directions click here and for GPX file click here.

Mother's Day is this Sunday, 11 March, and though there is usually limited spillover of that into Saturday, it is always nice on this day to have a walk with a choice of lunch pubs, just in case they are a bit booked out. Well, this walk has five, last time I counted - two in pretty Little Missenden three miles in, and two more in Penn Street 5.8 miles in, with a further one mid afternoon as a back stop.

It is also a walk that has not had a weekend outing for two and a half years......not since I last posted it in September 2015, in fact.

Its pubs apart, attractions of the walk include what is usually a nice collection or snowdrops in Great Missenden churchyard (though they could be going over now), and plenty of expansive views. Also some muddy fields (though touch wood they might be firming up a bit now). Unusually for a Chilterns walk there is not much woodland.

In Amersham there is a nice deli for tea and fine pubs. It is a 20 minute or so walk up the hill to Amersham station.

Returning from Amersham, your easiest and quickest option is the 09 or 39 past trains into Marylebone. Your return ticket is definitely valid on those.

There are also Metropolitan Line trains at 17 and 47 past. I have always assumed that Chilterns Railway tickets were NOT valid on these, but I recall someone telling me they can be used as far as Harrow-on-the Hill and to Baker Street but not to any other Metropolitan stations between Harrow and Baker Street. I have never tested this, however. If anyone does and it works (or doesn't), do let us know. T=1.5
  • 04-Mar-18

    One of the treats of doing walks out of Marylebone is the cafe on the corner across the road from the station entrance. It is the last of the great London greasy spoons. Fabulously fast service - it makes McDonalds look sluggish - and great traditional breakfasts (including vegetarian options). You can be in and out in 20 minutes. Recommended!

  • Anonymous

    Cracking walk.

  • Anonymous

    Going. Thanks for putting this very scenic walk on.

  • Anonymous

    Mud, Mud, and fluid! Perhaps that was the reason why the walk has not been featured for 2.5 years. Despite all these, more than 20 came on the walk, rain held off all day, we even had a brief spell of sunshine. overcast +sunshine. Most stopped at Squirrel for lunch and some sat outside. We arrived at Amersham in good time ~ 4pm, by this time, fast walkers have long vanished. Some had tea/cake at Seasons Cafe Deli - The zuccini pistachio lime curd cake was delicious. We caught 5:09 train back to London.

Book 1, Walk 5 (R): Amersham to Great Missenden

Length: 16.3 km (10.1 miles)
Toughness: 4 out of 10 (more if Toby's Lane is muddy)

London Marylebone: 09-57 hrs Aylesbury Vale Parkway service
Arrive Amersham: 10-32 hrs

LT underground Baker Street: 09-33 hrs Amersham service
Arrive Amersham: 10-24 hrs
and wait at station for arrival of Aylesbury train (10-32 hrs)

Return: Great Missenden to Marylebone: 16-02, 16-32, 17-02, 17-29, 18-04 and 18-35 hrs

Rail ticket: a day return to Great Missenden (one stop beyond Amersham in travel zone 9) making use of any travel card you might possess.

A year ago we tried out this walk "backwards" on a Wednesday in January, and as it worked well, let's try it again !

From the railway station in Amersham New Town we head down through Parsonage Wood to the Old Town where we soon head uphill along the edge of a vast field (Gore Hill) to Coleshill. Onwards then to Winchmore Hill and Penn. I suggest we by-pass the two (very good) pubs in Penn and proceed through Penn Wood to Beamond End which soon connects with Toby's Lane, a long, potentially muddy or waterlogged way which heads due north between farms and farmland.This lane eventually drops down to the pretty village of Little Missenden, where we will stop for a late lunch at the pleasant Red Lion pub ('phoning ahead advised - 01494-862876 - e.t.a 13-20 hrs).
After lunch you head through woods and over fields and through a stud farm before a stretch over fields takes you to the outskirts of Great Missenden.
For tea in the High Street you have a choice of the popular Cross Keys pub, or Cafe Twit (part of the Roald Dahl Museum), or Matildas Cafe - all are close to the railway station for your journey home.
Tips on Walking Backwards here
Walk Directions here L=1.5

  • Anonymous

    Hi Guys,

    Intend to attend this walk weather sunny and trains running for Chilterns line. Hope to see some of you.


  • 09-Jan-18

    Hi, I'm new and would like to give this walk a go. Please look out for me. I'll be in a blue jacket and my number is 07981494967.

    Thanks, Selina

  • Anonymous

    Sorry guys can't make the walk house emergency. Enjoy the walk.


  • 11-Jan-18

    Legs 11 today, including one first timer. Once again, the weather was much better than forecasted: mostly sunny and very mild , with no wind and no rain, and considerably warmer than of late; in fact, very pleasant walking conditions.

    The mud was as forecasted, though: lots of it all day. Between Colsehill and Winchmore Hill the mud was unrelenting and hard work to get through, but later, in Penn Wood and along Toby's Lane, where I was expecting heavy duty mud and flooded paths, the conditions were not at all bad. We made Little Missenden in good time for our booking at the Red Lion, where six of us enjoyed a good, inexpensive lunch, served with a smile.

    There was excitement in the village by the time of our arrival as a rare hawfinch had been spotted near the church, and twitchers with bins and telephoto lenses had descended in their numbers. Our sandwichers, on entering the churchyard to enjoy their picnics, probably disturbed the twitchers, and said hawfinch if it was still there, but the twitchers had a good opportunity to take plenty of pictures of our sandwichers, who gamely posed for them.

    Excitement over, it was still sunny as we set out on the short afternoon leg of the walk, which was both pleasant and uneventful. On reaching Great Miss tea was taken by us "twits" in the so-named cafe, whilst two stopped for a tincture at the Cross Keys. Most of us were then on the 16-32 hrs train having enjoyed a good day's walking in the Chilterns, in excellent company.

Book 1, Walk 5 (R) - Amersham to Great Missenden

Length: 16.3 km (10.1 miles)
Toughness: 4 out of 10

London Marylebone: 09-57 hrs
Arrive Amersham: 10-32 hrs

OR take a Met.Line train from Baker Street to arrive at Amersham by 10-30 hrs

Return: Great Missenden to Marylebone: 16-02, 16-32, 17-02, 17-29 and 18-04 hrs

Rail ticket: use your railcard to Amersham (extending it where necessary). For your return journey, a single from Great Miss. to Amersham should suffice.

There's nothing like a "backwards" walk at the start of the year to test your map reading skills - although those hand-held gizmos showing line of route make life easier for you. It's cheating, of course.......

This walk works well in both directions, and this may be the first time it's posted "backwards". Why ? - I'm difficult and like to be awkward - and I prefer ending a walk in Great Miss to Amersham. Leaving Amersham (as quickly as possible !) we head for the hills above the old town (some nice views) to Coleshill and then Winchmore Hill. Lunch can be taken here, at the Squirrel pub or the Hit or Miss pub, both usually good - but I am tempted to suggest we keep going at take lunch one hour later in the pretty village of Little Missenden, at the Crown pub or (recommended) the Red Lion. The leg between Winchmore Hill and Little Miss takes you through Penn Wood, which can be muddy in winter, and then along Toby,s Lane, which is often waterlogged in places (requiring you to tippy-toe through fields on either side of the path).

After Little Miss you cross the A413 road and head northwards through woods, across fields and through a stud farm then a series of fields into Great Missenden, where you have two good tea options: Cafe Twit, part of the Roald Dahl Centre, serves a good cuppa and has a nice choice of cakes. The Cross Keys pub, near the railway station, is cosy and serves a good pint.
Enjoy. T=1.5
Directions here L=1.5
  • Ian T

    Toby's lane had only 4 or 5 easily avoided puddles on Sunday. Penn Wood a bit boggier but not impassable. The left hand side (your direction) probably drier. Thin coating of slippy - as opposed to sinky - mud elsewhere on route.

  • 04-Jan-17

    16 on this walk on a day that was cloudier than promised . The forecast said sun would break through and it seemed to be happening late morning. But then grey cloud returned and stayed in place till just before dusk.

    But it was relatively mild at least and this made a nice winter walk - varied and interesting. Mud slithery rather than gloopy, though it accrued to boots on some arable fields. Reversing the directions (a prospect which perhaps put off the fairer sex a bit, since the group was rather male-heavy) was not a problem on the whole as enough of us remembered the route. But even the most experienced went off piste occasionally.....

    We pushed on to Little (not Great) Missenden for lunch at the Red Lion, getting there at 1pm. Hearty unsophisticated food in a cosy pub. Ducks and chickens and trout to be fed in the garden (the pub even supplied bread).

    Tea in a busy Cafe Twit and then following Midweek Walk tradition we rushed for an early (4.32) train to get back to the Smoke in time for the rush hour. Always nice to squash up with the workers on the way home...

  • 04-Jan-17

    It is interesting doing a well-known walk backwards, btw. In this case rather than rushing anxiously through pretty Littie Missenden in the morning on the way to lunch in Penn Street, one could savour it as a lunch destination. The view as one descended into it was very pretty - usually this is behind you and you barely stop to look at it. The big descent to Little Mis in the usual direction became a brisk climb after lunch. In short, it is a great way to see a walk with fresh eyes - but probably best done when you are already familiar with the walk the right way round.

TOCW1 Walk 5 : Great Missenden to Amersham
The Chilterns Little Missenden with BIG fish and an easy walk
A short distance at 16.3km (10.1 miles) - you can just follow the river after the Red Lion pub if you want to shorten the walk but it is easy - the dotted red line on the map shows the route clearly
Tough ? not at all at 4 out of 10
Explorers 172 & 181 or Landranger 165
or find the map here
or GPS here

Take the 9.57am from Marylebone Station to Great Missenden arriving at 10.38
HEADS UP CHEAP TRAVEL Great Missenden is one stop outside London Transport zone nine and Network card holders can get a discounted London Transport zone 1-9 travelcard at weekends and on bank holidays from any Underground ticket office up to a week in advance. You then only need to buy a one stop extension from Chiltern Railways from Great Missenden to Amersham.
This approach has the advantage that on the return journey from Amersham you can use the four Underground trains an hour (45 minutes to Baker Street) as well as the two hourly Chiltern Railway trains to Marylebone 39 minutes.
By contrast, a normal day return to Great Missenden is only valid on Chiltern Railways.

This is a cracking walk with with gentle rolling hills, old churches (what a surprise) and excellent lunch options. Even if you do not eat at The Red Lion which is fairly early on in the walk then pop into the pub garden and have a look at the River Miss Bourne ( I kid you not) where very large trout challenge the ducks and geese for the scraps of bread that you throw in. They are all game (!)

It maybe advisable to phone and reserve a table when setting off from the station ( or a few days before if you know that you are going ) as the pubs may well be busy
Lunch The original lunch stop for this walk is the Squirrel pub (tel 01494 711 291) in Penn Street, some 9½km into the walk, which serves pub classics but from their web site I am not sure if they are doing food today
140 metres down the road from the Squirrel, the Hit or Miss Inn (tel 01494 713 109) – cricket – has plenty of seating and food served this Monday 12noon to 8pm.
Slightly further on (say just over 1 km and as far as I can see on the route ) is the Plough with food served this Monday 12.00 to 18.00
For slower walkers or late starters, Little Missenden, some 5½km into the walk, has two characterful old pubs, though their food offering is more limited. The Red Lion (tel 01494 862 876) serves food, while the Crown (tel 01494 862 571) offers pies, baked potatoes, sandwiches and soup.

Tea The recommended tea stop is Seasons Café Deli in Old Amersham, which is open until 6pm daily. This has limited seating, however, so groups might like to explore other options nearby. One immediately across the road from Seasons is Gilbey’s Restaurant (01494 727142) which advertises cream teas. Otherwise, there are a number of ancient pubs in the vicinity, including the Crown Inn Hotel 50 metres to the west of Seasons, which offers afternoon tea and the Kings Arms 100 metres beyond that. Just before Seasons on the route there is also the Nags Head.
These are some 20 minutes walk from the station
If you are desperate by AMersham station then there is a Tesco Express just up the road selling snacks and a Subway beyond that which sells tea.

All the info here

  • Anonymous

    this is already posted for jan 4, just 2 days later...? am i missing a trick?

  • 28-Dec-16

    Thanks for flagging up the similarity Anon

    The trick that you missed is the walk is in a different direction so substantially different views and different lunch and tea venues - same leaving time from Marylebone and churches are the main similarities

    There is likely to be a larger number of walkers available on the Monday who wouldn’t normally make the Wednesday walk ( a different demographic )

    I trust that this explains the difference

  • Anonymous

    can I bring my Champaigne, I could not get out today, Sarah

  • Anonymous

    Only if you bring fizz on BOTH Great Missenden walks this week!

  • 02-Jan-17

    15 on this walk, including a late starter who caught us up at lunch time, plus a couple who appeared to be doing the walk independently. We had a beautiful clear blue sky for most of the walk, with a few clouds appearing towards the end of the afternoon. It was pretty slippery underfoot for most of the route, with frost and black ice on the tarmac sections and a thin layer of treacherous mud over the footpaths and bridleways.

    We had a brief stop in Little Missenden to look at the church and to belatedly toast the new year with champagne (courtesy of Sarah, for which many thanks) before carrying on to Penn Street and lunch. Remarkably, the long climb on the bridleway out of Little Missenden, the upper section of which is usually impassable due to long stretches of ankle deep mud, was relatively clear of the stuff and for once presented no real obstacle.

    The Squirrel at Penn Street was, it turned out, serving food so half a dozen of us ate there, with a couple more stopping off for a drink. There were no free tables inside, but the bar staff directed us to a cosy roofed and semi-enclosed decked area at the rear of the pub equipped with patio heaters and a wood burning stove and furnished with settees, arm chairs and blankets where we sat quite contentedly.

    Three of us stopped at Season's Deli in Amersham Old Town (now a full blown tea shop, the deli counter having been dispensed with sometime ago) for tea and cake before climbing up the other side of the valley to Amersham Station and the 4.15 Chiltern turbo back to Marylebone.

    A fine day out.

Book 1, walk 5 - Great Missenden to Amersham
Length: 16.3km (10.1 miles)
Toughness: 5 out of 10

9.42 train from Marylebone to Great Missenden, arriving 10.23

Buy a day return to Great Missenden, though if you want the option of using the Underground to return from Amersham, buy a zone 1-9 (yes nine) travelcard, with a day return from there to Great Missenden. You can get a discount on this with a Network Card if you can find a tube station ticket office open to sell it to you (not available from tube ticket machines).

For walk directions, click here.

The weather has decided to be autumnal, so I have decided to enter into the spirit with a Chilterns walk. Though actually this is also a perfectly pleasant walk on a sunny summers day too, having little woodland, lots of open views, and numerous pubs to stop at en route. It is rather a pity it normally gets confined to muddy winter, in fact.

The usual lunch stop is after 9.5km/5.6 miles in Penn Street where last time we looked you had a choice of two pubs. But Little Missenden after 5.5km (3 miles) also has two ancient hostelries, so if you are feeling lazy you could stop there.

Old Amersham has various tea options, of which the best is Seasons Cafe Deli if you can squeeze into it. Otherwise various ancient pubs in this attractive old coaching town can accommodate you.

It is about 20 minutes walk up the hill from Old Amersham to Amersham station, from where trains back to Marylebone, taking 39 minutes, go at 26 and 56 past the hour. Or you can take Metropolitan Line trains at 16 and 46 past, taking 49 minutes to Baker Street, but your Great Missenden return will not be valid on these.

  • 05-Sep-15

    10 on this walk, Disappointingly cloudy with sun only breaking through at 4.30pm when we were getting on the train home. A pleasant if unspectacular walk in the Chilterns - nice to do it when it is not beset with winter mud.

    The Squirrel was having a "family fun day" so the six of us who were pub-lunching went to the nearby Hit and Miss instead. A nice cosy pub with friendly staff, but interestingly some complained the menu was too creative - "No pub classics", "I was hoping for fish and chips".

    We got to Amersham rather too early at 3.30pm where some found the cakes too expensive and others thought them delicious. Then the unusual experience for this walk (which is normally done in deepest winter) of doing the walk up the hill to the station in the daylight and seeing the fine view back over Old Amersham. Sunshine and snoozing on the train back to the Smoke.

  • 05-Sep-15

    A plug for the wonderful cafe opposite Marylebone station. Fabulous breakfasts served at lightning speed. Try it next time you do a Chilterns walk!