Greys Court bluebells

07-May-13 • Saturdaywalker on Flickr

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Book 1, Walk 9, Shiplake to Henley

Lunch at the Bottle & Glass Inn (after), 20 October '07.

20-Oct-07 • mew2005b on Flickr

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Book 1, Walk 9, Shiplake to Henley

Close to Crowsley Park, 20 October '07.

20-Oct-07 • mew2005b on Flickr

book1 henley shiplake crowsley walk9 swcwalks tocw19

Book 1, Walk 9, Shiplake to Henley

Kite, near Cowfields Farm, 20 October '07.

20-Oct-07 • mew2005b on Flickr

book1 henley redkite shiplake walk9 swcwalks tocw19

Book 1, Walk 9, Shiplake to Henley

Henley barge, 20 October '07.

20-Oct-07 • mew2005b on Flickr

thames book1 barge henley shiplake walk9 swcwalks tocw19

Gone too far

These people missed the left turn through the hedge. And it was in italics. Shiplake to Henley

08-Mar-08 • moontiger on Flickr

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Grey's Court

Shiplake to Henley

08-Mar-08 • moontiger on Flickr

book1 walk9 swcwalks

Shiplake to Henley walk

The River Thames, Rotherfield Greys village, Greys Court (NT) and historic Henley


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.

Updated: Sun, 18-Aug-19

Date # Post
Wed, 01-May-19 10

Wednesday walk Shiplake to Henley - High Wood, Rotherfield Greys, Greys Court and Lambridge Wood - for today's bluebell fix

Book 1, Walk 9 - Shiplake to Henley

Length: 17.7 km (11.1miles). Length via High Wood - 9.1 miles. Add 2.2 miles if finishing in Shiplake. Deduct 2.5 miles if taking short cut from Rotherfield Greys to Henley
Toughness: 4 out of 10

London Paddington: 10-12 hrs Reading service. Ealing B'way: 10-20 hrs
Arrive Twyford: 11-00 hrs Change trains
Leave Twyford: 11-08 hrs Henley service
Arrive Shiplake: 11-15 hrs

Henley to Paddington via Twyford: 15-53, 16-23, 17-05, 17-38, 18-08 and 18-38 hrs
Shiplake to Paddington via Twyford: 4 minutes after Henley

Rail ticket: buy a day return to Henley-on-Thames

This is a delightful bluebell walk, and I always try to fit it in during bluebell season. I suggest we take the High Wood option today, to enjoy the 'bells in these woods. Those who wish to take an early lunch, you can stop at the Bottle and Glass Inn at Binfield Heath. Otherwise, your lunch stop is 4 km further into the walk, at the popular Maltsters Arms in the village of Rotherfield Greys. After lunch you can take the short cut come direct route to Henley (see the Directions): for those on the main walk, you head for Greys Court with its magnificent bluebell paddock. Onwards then to Lambridge Wood, where direction following can be tricky - then it's over a golf course and down to Henley. Those ending their walk in town, you have a choice of tea stops, with the SWC favourite being the Chocolate Theatre Cafe, within 10 mins of the railway station.
If you follow the High Wood route today, as suggested, you will miss the opening leg beside the River Thames. To remedy this, and for your water feature-fix today, you can join me on the closing leg of 4 km from Henley to Shiplake, initially along the River. Your tea stop in Shiplake is the Baskerville pub, a few metres from the railway station.
Walk Directions are here L=1.9
8 alighted from the train at Shiplake, with 2 others joining us at lunchtime after their outward journey had been delayed by underground problems so that is 10.
At the start of the walk 2 of our chaps decided to test drive a new hand held gizmo on the original Book route via Shiplake Lock, leaving 6 of us to take the High Wood route, in search of bluebells. Alas, apart from one decent large patch in High Wood,the 'bells were disappointing all day thirsty and bedraggled, a blue fuzz rather than the expected carpets of blue. The wood in the grounds of Greys Court was particularly understated. But never mind, the weather was sunny spells and mild to warm, comfortable for walking, clouding over in the afternoon with some spits of rain towards walk end.
4 of us, including our 2 delayed starters, dined at the very busy Maltsters Arms in Rotherfield Greys. We had booked a nice table outdoors in the shaded patio area and we did not have to wait too long for our tasty meals to arrive. Some of our sandwichers had earlier stopped for an alfresco lunch amongst a good display of bluebells near Round Wood, later joining us at the Maltsters for a drink. Many of the diners in the pub were walkers and in addition to the pub's friendly notice "Muddy Boots Welcome", a defibrillator booth is now to the side of the pub's front door for aged walkers who do not quite make it.
Our gizmo followers noticed the church next door to the pub was serving freebie tea and cake from 2 pm and so indulged themselves before setting off on the afternoon leg of their walk. 3 of the ladies in our group who left the pub first extended their walk to Shiplake and with perfect timing joined most of the Henley finishers on the 19 05 hrs service from Henley at Shiplake station.
Our 2 delayed starters stopped at Greys Court for a cuppa and a brief visit to this attractive National Trust property I hope they navigated Lambridge Wood without getting too lost. Presumably they were on the train from Henley an hour after the rest of us. Otherwise, the Henley finishers just had enough time for a pub visit or tea stop in town before heading for the railway station.
The bluebell displays might have been below par today, but it didn't matter this lovely walk being so enjoyable at this time of year.

For 19 05 hrs train please read 17 05 hrs. With anno domini I might be slowing up but I was not that late finishing the walk............
We found out eventually that there was a major fire in Richmond which had delayed our journey to Ealing Broadway in the morning.

Chris and I enjoyed a pint pot of tea gratis at Greys Court in the afternoon as a reward for walking to this National Trust property. We just missed the 17 05 train having dallied to admire the gatehouse and grounds of George Harrisons' property which Chris hadn't viewed previously. (He is a London tour guide specialising in Jazz tours and Rock and Pop with Footprints of London.) We then met up with my ex colleague Rosemary who works in Henley and caught the 17 38 train. This was a very pretty and dry walk which we enjoyed enormously. Thank you Marcus.
Sun, 13-Jan-19 8

Sunday Walk: Shiplake to Henley - with shortcut

Shorter route 13.7km, 8.5 miles, Full walk 17.7km 11.1 miles
Toughness 4 out of 10.
Along the river and through woods, with views over the unspoilt Thames valley.
Rotherfield Greys' church contains an impressive Tudor memorial, the Knollys Tomb. From Rotherfield Greys, unless you’re Billy Whizz or can see in the dark, the shorter, more direct route to Henley is advised.
Train: 09:45 Reading train from Paddington (9:53 Ealing Broadway) changing at Twyford for the 10:38 to Henley (platform 5) arriving Shiplake 10:45
Return from Henley at xx23 and xx53, changing at Twyford
Get a return to Henley on Thames.
The suggested stop is the Maltsters Arms (tel 01491 628 400) in Rotherfield Greys, serving food to 3pm Sunday
An alternative is the earlier Bottle & Glass in Binfield Heath (tel 01491 412625). where food is served 12 - 4.30pm on Sundays.
The Chocolate Café (tel 01491 411 412) on the waterfront is recommended (open to 5pm). The station is 5 minutes away.
There are also a large number of pubs in Henley. Yay!
Directions: here
If sustained heavy rain has made the first stretch along the river impassable, take the alternative route from Shiplake to High Wood rejoining the main walk at Binfield Heath by the Bottle & Glass. (Being 3km shorter, this might also give you enough time for the rest of the full walk).
8 on a day that was mild overcast a bit breezy on higher ground 3 Billy Whizzes soon sped off out of sight, leaving 5 Terry Tortoises following at a moderate (but still respectable) pace. We didn’t stop at the Bottle and Glass but it has changed notably from the sleepy dilapidated pub I remember a whole playing field of cars parked up outside and looking a lot more posher than what it used to. The Maltsters had a “Muddy Boots Welcome” sign on the door and they were quite friendly and accommodating, despite being busy. By the time we arrived there, Billy and Milly Whizz were leaving to follow the full walk, the rest of us, as far as I know, intending to pursue the shorter ending. Mr Tiger, the slowest of the tortoise group, left early, expecting to be overtaken by the others on the final stretch. But they weren’t seen again.
Thu, 26-Apr-18 5

Shiplake to Henley - the River Thames, Greys Court and Lambridge Wood

Book 1, Walk 9 - Shiplake to Henley

Length: 14.7 km (9.1 miles) Option to extend by 3.5 km by returning to Shiplake
Toughness: 4 out of 10

London Paddington: 10-12 hrs Reading service. Ealing B: 10-20 hrs
Arrive Twyford: 11-00 hrs. Change trains
Leave Twyford: 11-08 hrs Henley service
Arrive Shiplake: 11-15 hrs

Return: Henley to Paddington via Twyford: 15-53, 16-23, 17-05, 18-08 and 18-38 hrs

Rail ticket: buy a day return to Henley-on-Thames

I suggest you take the High Wood route on leaving Shiplake, in the hope the bluebells are in full flower in this wood. You can stop for an early lunch at the reopened Bottle and Glass Inn in Binfield Heath if you wish, although the recommended lunch stop today comes 45 mins later at the Maltsters Arms in Rotherfield Greys, a favourite with SWC walkers. Best 'phone ahead with numbers: 01491-628400 [ your e.t.a 13-10 hrs.]
After lunch you head down through a bluebell wood and make for the National Trust's Greys Court, whose own bluebell wood should be in full flower. Next you have to negotiate Lambridge Wood, where many a SWC walker has become lost - so do follow the directions carefully ! Then you head over a golf course and down into Henley, for tea at the Chocolate Theatre Cafe or at one of the pubs in town.
As the suggested route today misses out on the Thames path section in the morning, you might like to get your water feature fix by returning to Shiplake via the river - a pleasant end to what I hope turns out to be an enjoyable day's walking. Your tea stop in Shiplake is the Baskerville pub, next door to the railway station.
Walk Directions here L=1.9
5 met at Twyford railway station for the onward journey to Shiplake; another joined us at the Maltsters Arms for a drink before walking with us to Greys Court, to then explore the grounds of this NT estate with its magnificent bluebell paddock; and Ramblin' Ros had tea with us in the pub before she took the direct route to Henley so for the full walk I best declare 5.
We enjoyed a lovely sunny and warm spring day, with no rain. Bluebells were "full on" in High Wood, the Paddock, Greys Court, Lambridge Wood and elsewhere on this lovely walk which we all enjoyed. There was also a field covered with cowslips below Rotherfield Greys. Four of us dined at the excellent Maltsters Arms, although service was on the slow side today. But no complaints, as the pub was preparing for a "wake" soon after we arrived. At walk end most of us did not hang around in Henley as we had engagements back in town in the evening.
Methinks this walk is amongst the best of our bluebell walks, today enjoyed in the best company.
Sun, 19-Nov-17

Sunday Walk: Shiplake to Henley

Shiplake to Henley Book 1 walk 9
Shorter walk: approx 9 miles 14.7 km. Full walk: 11.1 miles 17.7 km.
A varied walk with riverside stretches and woodland paths. In addition, there are magnificent views over the unspoilt Thames valley.
From Shiplake Lock, the route follows the Thames, then up to the church beside Shiplake College, and through woods beside Crowsley Park to the church and pub in Rotherfield Greys. Be sure to visit the spectacular Elizabethan tomb of Robert Knollys in the church. The full walk, a further 7.4 km, takes you on to the National Trust estate of Greys Court, and through the beech woods of Lambridge, but, at this time of year, the shorter ending from Rotherfield Greys may be wiser. It all depends how fast your little legs are! Sunset is at around 16:08 today.
Take the 9:15 Oxford train from Paddington ( Ealing Broadway 9:24) and change at Twyford for the 10:31 Henley train to Shiplake. Arrives there 10:38.
Return from Henley at xx:46 changing again at Twyford.
Get a return to Henley..
(You could also get the 9:30 Plymouth train to Reading, then the the 10:18 Paddington stopping train (platform 14) back to Twyford for the same Shiplake train. You need a slightly dearer ticket, allowing changes at Reading.)
Lunch: First up, the recently reopened Bottle & Glass at Binfield Heath (tel 01491 412625). The traditional stop is the Maltsters Arms 4km. further on in Rotherfield Greys (tel 01491 628 400)
Tea: The suggested tea place at walk end is the Chocolate Café (tel 01491 411 412) on Thameside (Street), facing the river (open weekends to 6 pm). The station is 10 minutes walk away.
The Red Lion Hotel serves cream teas. There are also a large number of pubs in Henley for those in need of a stronger drink..
Directions Use these online directions, the book version is outdated.
If there has been sustained heavy rain, the first stretch along the river may be flooded. In that case, the High Wood start is advised.
Wed, 26-Apr-17 8

Wednesday Walk - High Wood, Rotherfield Greys, Greys Court and a Thames finish

Book 1, Walk 9: Shiplake to Henley (or Shiplake Circular)

Length: 14.7 km (9.1 miles). Circular walk: 18.2 km (11.3 miles)
Toughness (both): 4 out of 10

London Paddington: 10-27 hrs Oxford service. Ealing Broadway: 10-36 hrs
Arrive Twyford: 11-12 hrs
Leave Twyford: 11-21 hrs Henley service
Arrive Shiplake: 11-28 hrs

Return: Henley-on-Thames to Paddington (again, changing at Twyford): 15-24, 16-20, 17-09, 17-46, 18-17
Return: Shiplake: 4 mins after departures from Henley

Rail ticket: buy a day return to Henley-on-Thames

This is my favourite bluebell walk, so I'm hoping the little whatsits are out and in bloom. In the hope the 'bells say hello to us today, we will take the High Wood option for this walk, which takes us through this large and impressive bluebell wood in the morning. It's onwards then via Crowsley Park and through a stud farm to lunch in Rotherfield Greys at the usually excellent, and popular, Maltsters Arms - 'phoning ahead essential to reserve a table: your e.t.a 1 pm (01491-628400).
After lunch you descend through a smaller bluebell wood and then head for Greys Court (worth a visit if you have time), and well worth a walk through its magnificent bluebell wood. You now have to negotiate Lambridge Wood, where many a SWC walker has gone astray and gone a-wandering, lost amongst its dense trees. If you take care in following the walk directions, you should emerge (eventually) onto a golf course. Cross this, then its a kilometer or so's walk into the centre of Henley. If ending your walk here, your suggested tea stop is the popular (with SWC walkers) Chocolate Theatre Cafe (previously the Henley Tea Rooms), 5 mins from the railway station.
However, as you missed out on the River Thames start to today's walk - by taking the High Wood option - you might like to get your water feature fix for today by returning to Shiplake along the Thames, a lovely, relaxing riverside stroll. Your tea stop in Shiplake is the Baskerville pub, almost next door to the railway station.
Walk directions here: L=1.9

Next week, Wednesday 03 May - Book 2, Walk 5b: Tring to Berkhamsted via Dockey (bluebell) Wood

8 today for this bluebell extravaganza, although as we found the day before, the woodland flowers really do need a good drink. That said, the weather forecast was correct for once, and we had one heavy shower during lunch and one light shower as we crossed the golf course above Henley. Otherwise, it was pleasantly sunny all day. The bluebells in High Wood and in Greys Court Spinney were in full bloom although gasping for water. Two in our group enjoyed their sandwiches in my "private" bluebell paddock, leaving the rest of us to head for the Maltsters Arms, where five of us had an excellent lunch: the Maltsters seldom disappoints. More bluebells in the woods as we approached Greys Court, to admire their display in the Spinney, then onwards to Lambridge Wood more carpets of bluebells and over the golf course, now in much needed rain before we descended into Henley. Tea and slabs of cake were taken in the usual Tea Rooms, before we said farewell to the youngster in our midst who made his way along the Thames back to Shiplake. Having had our bluebell fix for the week, if not the year, we were now all in good humour as we boarded the 17 09 hrs train back to London. Two or three on our walk are heading for the Brecons this coming weekend, and we wish them and the main SWC cohort a most enjoyable time there.
Sat, 26-Nov-16 7

Saturday First Walk Shiplake to Henley via High Wood

TOCW1 walk 9: Shiplake to Henley via High Wood T=1.9

You need the instructions for the High Wood option for the start of the walk here.
"This walk has plenty of variety, with riverside legs and paths through bluebell woods and beech woods. In addition, as soon as you are more than a few feet up, you have magnificent views over the unspoilt Thames valley."

Length: 9.1 miles (14.7km), 4 out of 10, walk time 3:50 hrs.

Trains: 0950 Oxford train from London Paddington (Ealing Broadway 0958). Change at Twyford (1042) for the train to Henley at 1050, arriving Shiplake at 1057.
Return trains are xx24.

Lunch is at the Maltsters Arms (tel 01491 628 400) in Rotherfield Greys, serving food daily from 12.00 to 3.00pm. This pub is halfway in the walk. If coffee & desserts tempt you, then there is a shortcut from the pub.

If you would like to do a longer walk, you could get the 0855 train and do the standard walk with or without the Lashbrook Thames tow path option (an extra 3 or 4km), which in theory, would result in meeting the others at the pub.

Thank you very much for reminding walkers of the Lashbrook Loop option. ' This section of the Thames Path, around a meander in the river, re opened in 2012 after a 17 year legal battle with local land owners. The Ramblers Association was responsible for the re opening of this riverside route and they encourage walkers to use it.' Within that option there are 2 further options the one I always use The 12 Gardens Route' rather than the 'Inland route as it is important to keep footfall on these rights of way.
The 12 Gardens Route sounds interesting jfk
The Maltsters Arms great food and service
Wed, 16-Mar-16 17

Midweek Day Walk - Shiplake to Henley-on-Thames

Shiplake to Henley-on-Thames, a pre vernal equinox stroll.

The River Thames, Rotherfield Greys village, Greys Court (NT) and historic Henley

Book 1 Walk 9

Length : 18 km or 11 miles

Toughness : 4 out of 10

Getting there : Catch the 9:42 am train from London Paddington (9:50 Ealing Broadway) to Shiplake with a change at Twyford.

Meeting point : Shiplake Station at 10:43 am

Tickets : Buy a cheap day return to Henley-on-Thames

Brief Description

After the trial by wind and hail a fortnight ago and by floods and mud last week, I hope this walk will be relatively free of surprises!
The pub is 10 km into the walk, so hence the earlier start. (This will also allow a bit more time for walkers who may wish to visit the NT Greys Court)

You may find full details of the walk here

Suggested Lunch stop

Maltsters Arms, Rotherfield Greys t: 01491 628400

Suggested Tea stop

Chocolate Theatre Café t: 01491 411412


OS Explorer : 171

Return train times

Trains return from Henley-on-Thames at 15:24 | 16:20 | 17:46 | 18:17
why the early train Arthur?!
can't get the normal discounts..
Does this train stop Ealing?
Just fyi, if you are buying a ticket from Paddington it costs £15.80 return on the train specified, whereas even with a Network Card it would be £13 on a train an hour later, so no massive difference.
Return is £6.95 from/to BZ6.
Is anyone intending to do this expensive walk? jfk
Yes, two of us
17 on this walk, including two late starters who caught us at lunchtime an excellent turnout for a midweek walk and even more so for a Thames walk. The weather was cloudy but with sun breaking through in the afternoon, perhaps a bit disappointing compared to some recent days but pleasant nonetheless.

Lunch in the Maltster's Arms met with the approval of even our more gourmet members, and staff were very friendly. Some stopped for tea/coffee at Grey's Court (which has moved its tea room to a slightly less scenic location), and most of us stopped again at The Chocolate Cafe in Henley.

We saw lots of bluebells, but none in flower, and lots of daffodils and celandines (the latter shut against the cold east winds). Birdsong was curiously muted.

My best moment of the day was on the train home when I realised that THERE WAS NO MUD ON MY BOOTS, the first time I have been able to say this on an SWC walk since September.
Sat, 19-Dec-15 13

Saturday Walk 1 - Shiplake to Henley

Book1 Walk 9 - Shiplake to Henley, High Wood option


This is a shorter version of the main walk, taking a more direct route to lunch. You will need the High Wood option, found at the bottom of the online directions.

After lunch it is possible to visit Greys Court (National Trust), a 16th century mansion, now dressed for Christmas, and complete with gardens and Tudor donkey wheel. Entry is £12, but there is a free cup of tea if you arrive on foot.

Trains: Take the 9:42 London Paddington to Oxford train (9:50 Ealing Broadway), changing at Twyford (arr 10:39) for the Henley train (dep 10:50), arriving at Shiplake at 10:57 Buy a day return to Henley. Return trains at xx21, also changing at Twyford

Lunch: The Maltsters Arms, Rotherfield Greys, serving food midday to 2:15pm

Tea: Chocolate Theatre Cafe, Thameside, Henley, open til 6pm.

Click here for full walk details and online directions
13 turned out on an unseasonably mild and sunny day. First stretch muddy in places (well, it is winter). High Wood dotted with “sportsmen” shooting at things. Polite and considerate but still unpleasant to see.
The Bottle and Glass is still under refurbishment. Will it reopen as a pub? Who knows. The Maltsters (or Maltesers as I prefer to call it) was welcoming and friendly. And their sticky toffee pudding out of this world (just a shame it wasn't mine!) The majority pressed on to Greys after lunch leaving two to skip gaily down the Henley shortcut very pretty after perhaps a little too much of Mr Brakspears famous elixir. But not before we visited the Knollys tomb in the church and received an impromptu talk on it from the churchwarden. (It’s a must see that most don’t).
Yes Knollys tomb well worth visiting jfk
Sat, 24-Jan-15 20 Shiplake to Henley
Sat, 26-Apr-14 4 Shiplake Circular, with shorter start via High Wood
Sun, 05-May-13 22 Shiplake to Henley
Sat, 21-Apr-12 Shiplake to Henley
Sun, 05-Jun-11 Shiplake to Henley
Sat, 07-May-11 Shiplake to Henley
Sat, 01-May-10 Shiplake to Henley
Sun, 01-Nov-09 Shiplake to Henley
Sat, 25-Apr-09 Shiplake to Henley
Sun, 09-Mar-08 Shiplake to Henley
Sat, 01-Mar-08 Shiplake to Henley
Sun, 11-Nov-07 Shiplake to Henley
Sat, 20-Oct-07 Shiplake to Henley
Sun, 29-Apr-07 Shiplake to Henley
Sat, 03-Mar-07 Shiplake to Henley
Sun, 12-Nov-06 Shiplake to Henley
Sat, 14-Oct-06 Shiplake to Henley