Saturday Walkers Club www.walkingclub.org.uk
Hambleden

Hambleden

02-Sep-09 • JonCombe on Flickr

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Hambleden Lock

Hambleden Lock

Henley Circular walk

30-Oct-10 • Saturdaywalker on Flickr

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P1060170

P1060170

06-Oct-12 • Brooksie85 on Flickr

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Hambleden Mill

Hambleden Mill

Henley Circular walk

09-Jun-16 • Saturdaywalker on Flickr

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The Thames, laid out for the regatta

The Thames, laid out for the regatta

Henley Circular walk

09-Jun-16 • Saturdaywalker on Flickr

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Henley-on-Thames (round walk)

Henley-on-Thames (round walk)

The weir at Hambledon Lock. D.Allen vivitar 5199mp

01-Apr-06 • magyardave2002 on Flickr

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Book 1 Walk 1 Henley-on-Thames (round)

Book 1 Walk 1 Henley-on-Thames (round)

Weir are we? Hambledon Lock. D.Allen Vivitar 5199mp

01-Jan-08 • magyardave2002 on Flickr

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The Thames Path in the morning, historic Hambledon for lunch, and back via the hills above Henley in the afternoon. Short but pretty.

Oxfordshire TOCW Book 1, Walk 1 • Toughness: 2/10 • Length: 10 miles (16 km)

This is a very pretty walk, out along the Thames, and back via the hills above. Its mainly flat morning follows the Thames path to the quaint and well preserved hamlet of Hambleden with its brick and flint red roofed buildings. The return is via the wooded geological terrace above river. Historic riverside Henley, with many tea rooms and pubs, is a nice place to finish

The walk starts in Henley (famous for its rowing regatta in late June or early July) and goes along the Thames towpath, with rowing instructors on bikes shouting instructions to their crews, past Temple Island with its neo-folly, to the 250-metre footbridge over the weir at Hambleden Mill, where canoeists practise in the stormy waters. Route finding is easy! From there the route is northwards to the suggested lunchtime pub in the well-preserved hamlet of Hambleden, which has a huge church out of all proportion to the population.

After lunch, the walk for the next 2.5km is through the Great Wood, the endlessness of which gives an inkling of how most of Britain must once have been. From the village of Fawley with its church and mausoleum, the walk returns along the Oxfordshire Way, past the manor of Henley Park, to Henley for tea.

Full Details

Tree Lined Path

Tree Lined Path

23-Jan-05 • Catherine Ames

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Thames Path

Thames Path

23-Jan-05 • Catherine Ames

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Thames Valley 2

Thames Valley 2

23-Jan-05 • Catherine Ames

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Book 1, Walk 4, Pangbourne Round 1

Book 1, Walk 4, Pangbourne Round 1

27 January '07

27-Jan-07 • MEW2005 on Flickr

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Book 1, Walk 4, Pangbourne Round 2

Book 1, Walk 4, Pangbourne Round 2

27 January '07

27-Jan-07 • MEW2005 on Flickr

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Book 1, Walk 4, Pangbourne Round 3

Book 1, Walk 4, Pangbourne Round 3

27 January '07

27-Jan-07 • MEW2005 on Flickr

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Thames Valley

Thames Valley

30-Mar-08 • Catherine Ames

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Pretty villages, a toll bridge, fine views of the Thames in the morning and a serene stroll through a rural idyll after lunch.

Oxfordshire TOCW Book 1, Walk 4 • Toughness: 4/10 • Length: 8 miles (14 km)

Pangbourne and its companion Whitchurch, on the other side of the River Thames – in Oxfordshire – are delightful villages, spoilt only by too much traffic. Passing on a toll bridge over the river, you come to St Mary’s Church, with the route continuing along part of the Thames Path National Trail (which opened in 1996) past Coombe Park, to a wood with views down to the Thames. From there it is up through a nature reserve and Great Chalk Wood, from where the original route diverts to Hill Bottom and a pub for lunch. After lunch you walk through a pocket park and then re-connect with the original walk's route to go through woods and fields, then head back down through Whitchurch and into Pangbourne for tea.

Full Details

bluebells woods

bluebells woods

25-Apr-09 • kɐʇɹlow on Flickr

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bluebells

bluebells

25-Apr-09 • kɐʇɹlow on Flickr

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Greys Court bluebells

Greys Court bluebells

07-May-13 • Saturdaywalker on Flickr

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Bluebells in Latham Woods

Bluebells in Latham Woods

April 28 2007

29-Apr-07 • cacooke on Flickr

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Book 1, Walk 9, Shiplake to Henley

Book 1, Walk 9, Shiplake to Henley

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

20-Oct-07 • mew2005b on Flickr

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Book 1, Walk 9, Shiplake to Henley

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

Book 1, Walk 9, Shiplake to Henley

Close to Crowsley Park, 20 October '07.

20-Oct-07 • mew2005b on Flickr

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

Oxfordshire TOCW Book 1, Walk 9 • Toughness: 4/10 • Length: 10 miles (18 km)

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.

From Shiplake Lock the route follows the Thames, then up to the church beside Shiplake College, and through bluebell woods beside Crowsley Park (the grandiose site for the BBC’s listening masts), to the church and pub in Rotherfield Greys. The cherry trees and cricket green in the hamlet of Greys Green lead on into the National Trust estate of Greys Court, and from there into the beech woods of Lambridge, and past Friar Park, with its splendidly over-opulent Gothic gatehouse, to a teahouse in Henley beside the river.

Note that if there has been sustained heavy rain the river may be flooded and make the first stretch along the river in the main walk route impassable.

Full Details

River Isis

River Isis

Oxford Circular.

04-Nov-07 • msganching on Flickr

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Water Meadows

Water Meadows

Oxford circular walk. Book1

04-Nov-07 • msganching on Flickr

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Wolfson College

Wolfson College

Wolfson College designed by Powell and Moya opened in 1974. This is a beautiful example of 1960s/70s architecture.

04-Nov-07 • msganching on Flickr

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Horsefly

Horsefly

Oxford Circular.

04-Nov-07 • msganching on Flickr

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Book 1 Walk 13 (Oxford round)

Book 1 Walk 13 (Oxford round)

Oxford Canal. D.Allen Vivitar 5199mp

01-Jan-08 • magyardave2002 on Flickr

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Book 1 Walk 13 (Oxford round)

Book 1 Walk 13 (Oxford round)

Flooded Port Meadow Wolvercote Oxfordshire. D.Allen Vivitar 5199mp

01-Jan-08 • magyardave2002 on Flickr

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Book 1 Walk 13 (Oxford round)

Book 1 Walk 13 (Oxford round)

Flooded Port Meadow Wolvercote Oxfordshire. D.Allen Vivitar 5199mp

01-Jan-08 • magyardave2002 on Flickr

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Rivers Isis and Cherwell, Commons, a ruined Abbey, a Norman Castle compound and a stroll around Oxford and its historic colleges

Oxfordshire TOCW Book 1, Walk 13 • Toughness: 1/10 • Length: 10 miles (16 km)

This is an undemanding but enjoyable short Country Walk, ending in an exploration of this historic university city, with its University’s Colleges and the Norman Castle compound.

The walk’s route is easy and entirely level but can be muddy along the path beside the River Cherwell after Wolfson College while after periods of heavy rain, paths beside both the Rivers Isis and Cherwell can be flooded. The walk starts along the Isis to Binsey, a favourite walk for the poet Gerard Manley Hopkins (the ‘wind-wandering, weed-winding bank’), who lamented the felling of aspens along the towpath here in his 1879 poem Binsey Poplars (‘the sweet especial rural scene’). You can take a dip here if you want. With Port Meadow on the other side of the river, you walk to the ruins of Godstow Abbey, before coming to the Trout Inn at Wolvercote (a lunch option) then take in a bit of Wolvercote Common before coming to the Plough Inn (a second option for lunch).

After lunch the walk heads south along the Oxford Canal, past some houseboats, then across town and via a footbridge by Wolfson College to go along the River Cherwell through its Nature Reserve, where buttercups are abundant in May. Going through the University Parks, you come to the Pitt Rivers Museum. From here you start your walking tour of Oxford’s historic colleges and famous buildings, winding in and out of lanes and small streets as the walk fits in many of the colleges as well as the Norman Castle Compound with the Castle Mound and the former Victorian Prison (now a hotel), before you stop for tea and finally head for the railway station.

Full Details

Pretty View

Pretty View

14-Nov-04 • Catherine Ames

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Blue And Orange

Blue And Orange

11-Jun-05 • Bela Struzkova

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Corn Field

Corn Field

11-Jun-05 • Bela Struzkova

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Clematis

Clematis

11-Jun-05 • Bela Struzkova

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Cookham Dean

Cookham Dean

11-Jun-05 • Bela Struzkova

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Mustard

Mustard

11-Jun-05 • Bela Struzkova

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Mustard In Blossom

Mustard In Blossom

11-Jun-05 • Bela Struzkova

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A figure of 9 - Up over Winter Hill, overlooking the Thames Valley, then along the Thames Path.

Oxfordshire TOCW Book 1, Walk 24 • Toughness: 3/10 • Length: 10 miles (17 km)

This is a figure of 9 walk, looping around the hills above Cookham with views over the Thames Valley, before returning to it for lunch. The afternoon follows a pretty stretch of the Thames Path to Maidenhead.

You start with a circuit of Cookham, heading westwards from the town and passing the very ordinary house where the artist Stanley Spencer lived and worked for some 15 years until his death in 1959. After passing through Cookham Dean you go past a large free-range turkey farm and into Bisham Woods, where an attractive stretch along an escarpment with fine views over the Thames Valley leads to Winter Hill. Mole, Ratty and company of The Wind in the Willows fame inhabited the riverbanks and wild woods around here, at least according to their author Kenneth Grahame who lived nearby. From here you drop down to the Thames to return by the river to Cookham for lunch, with the opportunity to visit the Stanley Spencer Gallery.

After lunch you head south on a particularly attractive stretch of the Thames Path, with the hanging beech woods of the Cliveden Estate on the other side of the river. On the outskirts of Maidenhead you go past Boulter’s Lock, a popular spot to watch the river traffic.

Full Details

Blenheim Park

Blenheim Park

The long drive behind the Column of Victory. Hanborough to Charlbury

30-May-10 • moontiger on Flickr

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Not as daft as it looks

Not as daft as it looks

Stock (or is it people? ) are controlled using temporary electric fences. The gates stay put. Blenheim Palace. Hanborough to Charlbury

03-May-09 • moontiger on Flickr

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Toblerone topiary, Charlbury

Toblerone topiary, Charlbury

Hanborough to Charlbury

03-May-09 • moontiger on Flickr

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Blenheim Park Lake

Blenheim Park Lake

Hanborough to Charlbury

30-May-10 • moontiger on Flickr

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Bleinheim Palace

Bleinheim Palace

10-Nov-13 • JonCombe on Flickr

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Blenheim Palace grounds

Blenheim Palace grounds

11-Apr-04 • Peter Conway

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Onward route from Blenheim Palace

Onward route from Blenheim Palace

11-Apr-04 • Peter Conway

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Blenheim Palace, its beautiful landscaped parkland, a Roman road, and flint stone villages.

Oxfordshire TOCW Book 1, Walk 38 • Toughness: 5/10 • Length: 13 miles (22 km)

This is a lovely walk, just an hour and a quarter's journey by train from London into Oxfordshire's countryside and the extensive grounds of Blenheim palace. The River Evenlode and its soft, easy hills and fertile countryside inspired Tolkien’s Hobbit Shire.

The start of the walk is good for blackberries in September. Before lunch, there are the 2,100 acres of the Great Park leading to Blenheim Palace, its lake and the Column of Victory that the first Duke of Marlborough had placed on the horizon so that he could see it from his bedroom.

Once over the wall out of the Park, the route is along Akeman Street, the Old Roman road from Alchester to Cirencester, with big stone slabs from the old road still visible in places. This is now part of the Oxfordshire Way and the leg of over a mile to Stonesfield is through open farmland and progress can be hard work if into the wind.

At lunchtime you could picnic in the meadow by the Stonesfield Ford and the old slate quarries, or have a pub lunch in the village.

You pass through the delightful stone villages of Stonesfield, Finstock and finally Charlbury, entering it from a footpath beside Lord Rotherwick’s deer park, Cornbury Park. Charlbury has many nice pubs.

Full Details

The Jolly Woodman

The Jolly Woodman

Gerrards Cross to Cookham walk

05-Mar-16 • Saturdaywalker on Flickr

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Thatched Cottage With Union Jacket

Thatched Cottage With Union Jacket

Time Out walk Gerrards Cross to Cookham.

21-Oct-07 • msganching on Flickr

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Horses under a tree

Horses under a tree

Gerrards Cross to Cookham

18-Apr-10 • moontiger on Flickr

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Violets and Celandine

Violets and Celandine

Gerrards Cross to Cookham

18-Apr-10 • moontiger on Flickr

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Bulstrode Park

Bulstrode Park

Gerrards Cross to Cookham

18-Apr-10 • moontiger on Flickr

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Coltsfoot

Coltsfoot

Gerrards Cross to Cookham

18-Apr-10 • moontiger on Flickr

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Summer greenery

Summer greenery

Except it's spring. Gerrards Cross to Cookham

18-Apr-10 • moontiger on Flickr

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Bulstrode Park and Burnham Beeches woods, the Thames, and Stanley Spencer

Oxfordshire TOCW Book 1, Walk 40 • Toughness: 2/10 • Length: 9 miles (15 km)

Near the start, this walk crosses Bulstrode Park and from there, past woods and lakes to a cratered moonscape where the route crosses the M40. Then it goes through the Hedgerley Green Nature Reserve to the church at Hedgerley, and on through Egypt Wood and Burnham Beeches to a pub in Littleworth Common. 8.8km (5.5 miles) of this walk is covered before lunch. In the afternoon, there are more woods and fringes of woods, with an optional detour to the hilltop Church of St Nicholas in Hedsor for a fine view over the Thames Valley and across to a late eighteenth-century folly, a ruined castle. The walk ends alongside the Thames, going over Cookham Bridge to Cookham Church, the Stanley Spencer Gallery and tea and then across the National Trust’s Cookham Moor to Cookham Station.

Full Details

Sunset on the Thames, Pangbourne

Sunset on the Thames, Pangbourne

Henley to Pangbourne walk

22-Oct-16 • Saturdaywalker on Flickr

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Autumn Trees and a Folly

Autumn Trees and a Folly

10-Feb-06 • Roland Webb

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Field and Grey Sky

Field and Grey Sky

10-Feb-06 • Roland Webb

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Misty Field

Misty Field

10-Feb-06 • Roland Webb

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Misty View

Misty View

10-Feb-06 • Roland Webb

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Not Sheep

Not Sheep

10-Feb-06 • Roland Webb

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Sun Through Misty Trees

Sun Through Misty Trees

10-Feb-06 • Roland Webb

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Another lovely country ramble, and the perfect pub crawl. Starts and finishes by the Thames, via forests and several country pubs.

Oxfordshire TOCW Book 1, Walk 51 • Toughness: 6/10 • Length: 11 miles (19 km)

A lovely walk, starting and finishing by the Thames, and passing through many woods and pubs en route, so perfect for a day long pub crawl. However, a bit long for mid-winter unless you start early.

The walk starts beside the Thames in Henley, goes down one of Henley's most ancient streets, out into a broad valley, to the church and first pub at Rotherfield Greys. It then goes to the church at Rotherfield Peppard, and thereafter it is fields, beech woods and small villages.

This walk does not suffer from a shortage of refreshment stops and includes three pubs ideally located for the lunch stop, plus others. The walk also includes an alpaca farm just outside Whitchurch where you can watch hundreds of alpacas grazing in the fields, a true highlight towards the end of the walk.

On the final leg the walk then carries on to the Whitchurch parish church beside the Thames, to the toll bridge over the Thames, and finally into Pangbourne for a last refreshment stop.

Full Details

Woods near Bix summer

Woods near Bix summer

Henley via Stonor walk

02-Nov-16 • Saturdaywalker on Flickr

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View from hill before Middle Asendon picnic spot

View from hill before Middle Asendon picnic spot

04-Sep-04 • Peter Conway

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Rainbow pub, Middle Assendon

Rainbow pub, Middle Assendon

04-Sep-04 • Peter Conway

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Valley near Stonor

Valley near Stonor

04-Sep-04 • Peter Conway

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Chicory

Chicory

Henley via Stonor

07-Sep-07 • moontiger on Flickr

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Chicory

Chicory

Henley via Stonor

07-Sep-07 • moontiger on Flickr

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Bellflower

Bellflower

Henley Circular via Stonor

07-Sep-07 • moontiger on Flickr

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Long walk through the Chilterns over gentle rolling grassy hills. Historic riverside Henley for tea.

Oxfordshire TOCW Book 2, Walk 6 • Toughness: 6/10 • Length: 13 miles (22 km)

Henley is normally thought of as a riverside town but, as this walk demonstrates, it is also on the southern edge of the Chiltern Hills, a charming area of hidden valleys, mixed wood and farmland, and largely gentle slopes (the main walk has one substantial steep hill after lunch, however). The walk takes you up one side and down the other of the long valley leading up to Stonor, with plenty of charming views over hill en route. Lunch is at a pretty and quiet pub in the village of Pishill, and the return is past hidden farms and through ancient woods into Henley, with its excellent tea rooms. Note that this is a fairly full day out, and tea is 11km (7 miles) from the lunchtime pub, so the main walk is only really practical from late February to late October. However, in winter, or if you fancy a later start, the short walk makes a pleasant alternative.

Full Details

Burst of colour

Burst of colour

Henley Circlular via Hambleden (short) The hill before Hambleden

10-Nov-12 • moontiger on Flickr

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Book 2, Walk 7, Henley via Hambleden Circular 1

Book 2, Walk 7, Henley via Hambleden Circular 1

Hambleden village, 20 August 2006

19-Aug-06 • MEW2005 on Flickr

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Book 2, Walk 7, Henley via Hambleden Circular 2

Book 2, Walk 7, Henley via Hambleden Circular 2

Clearing up after a brief shower, Hambleden village, 20 August 2006

19-Aug-06 • MEW2005 on Flickr

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The Thames path in the morning. Gentle woodland after lunch in an NT Village, Historic riverside Henley for tea.

Oxfordshire TOCW Book 2, Walk 7 • Toughness: 3/10 • Length: 9 miles (15 km)

Though it shares the picturesque flint stone village of Hambleden for lunch, this pleasant and undemanding walk follows a completely different route from the Henley Round walk in the first Time Out Book of Country Walks. In the morning it follows the left bank of the river (wilder and less manicured than the right bank) along the stretch where the famous Henley Regatta is held each summer), before passing through fields and woodland to Hambleden. After lunch, it follows the valley down to cross the Thames over the weir at Hambleden Mill and Aston, and then crosses the lower part of Remenham Hill to return to Henley for tea.

Full Details

Not quite still life in Marlow

Not quite still life in Marlow

Thames

03-Oct-15 • magyardave2002 on Flickr

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Hurley

Hurley

27-Aug-05 • Peter Conway

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Thames near Aston

Thames near Aston

27-Aug-05 • Peter Conway

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Lunch

Lunch

27-Aug-05 • Peter Conway

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Hambleden

Hambleden

27-Aug-05 • Peter Conway

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Bisham Abbey

Bisham Abbey

27-Aug-05 • Peter Conway

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View through a toff's gate

View through a toff's gate

Marlow Circular

10-May-08 • moontiger on Flickr

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The Thames path in the morning, a classic pub for lunch, gentle hill afterwards.

Oxfordshire TOCW Book 2, Walk 8 • Toughness: 3/10 • Length: 13 miles (22 km)

If all you know of the Thames is the grey muddy stretch that runs through London, on this walk you are in for a pleasant surprise. The Thames above Marlow is a lazy, tranquil river, which runs between pleasant meadows and overhanging trees, occasionally overlooked by fine old manor houses. The area is also known as a habitat for red kites - look up to see them hovering overhead. This walk follows the Thames path for the first 8km (5 miles), passing the ancient village of Hurley, little changed since the days when it was a Benedictine Abbey. Lunch is in Aston or Hambleden, both quaint riverside villages. By contrast, the afternoon takes you up over the wooded hills that frame the Thames Valley, and then down into the well-preserved town of Marlow for tea.

Full Details

Wittenham Clumps from just outside Didcot

Wittenham Clumps from just outside Didcot

SWC Walk 44 - Didcot Circular

27-Apr-16 • thomasgrabow on Flickr

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House in Long Wittenham

House in Long Wittenham

SWC Walk 44 - Didcot Circular

27-Apr-16 • thomasgrabow on Flickr

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Boat Houses along Isis River in Burcot

Boat Houses along Isis River in Burcot

SWC Walk 44 - Didcot Circular

27-Apr-16 • thomasgrabow on Flickr

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Path to Dorchester Abbey

Path to Dorchester Abbey

SWC Walk 44 - Didcot Circular

27-Apr-16 • thomasgrabow on Flickr

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Didcot Power Station from Round Hill

Didcot Power Station from Round Hill

SWC Walk 44 - Didcot Circular

27-Apr-16 • thomasgrabow on Flickr

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Cottage garden

Cottage garden

Appleford Circular

06-Jun-09 • moontiger on Flickr

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Cardoon

Cardoon

Appleford Circular

06-Jun-09 • moontiger on Flickr

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A walk in Oxfordshire, taking in Dorchester-on-Thames and the Clumps. Can start from Appleford.

Oxfordshire SWC Walk 44 • Toughness: 3/10 • Length: 13 miles (22 km)

This walk takes in an attractive part of the Thames Valley south of Oxford, with a lunchtime stop in Dorchester-on-Thames. This handsome village is now bypassed by the traffic but used to be an important staging post between London and Oxford. It has retained a large number of coaching inns and other pubs, so there's plenty of choice for refreshment. You should be sure to visit Dorchester Abbey, one of the few large monastery buildings to survive the Dissolution; it now functions as an impressive parish church. In the afternoon the walk comes to the Wittenham Clumps, the name given to a pair of Iron Age hill forts set in a nature reserve managed by the Northmoor Trust.

Full Details

Horses seeking shade

Horses seeking shade

Extra walk: Cholsey to Goring That blue stuff is sky.

06-May-08 • moontiger on Flickr

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Early hotpants

Early hotpants

Extra walk: Cholsey to Goring

06-May-08 • moontiger on Flickr

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Thatched walls, Blewbury

Thatched walls, Blewbury

For the village that has everything. Extra walk: Cholsey to Goring

06-May-08 • moontiger on Flickr

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Old houses, Blewbury

Old houses, Blewbury

Extra walk: Cholsey to Goring

06-May-08 • moontiger on Flickr

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One of the cranesbills

One of the cranesbills

Extra walk: Cholsey to Goring

06-May-08 • moontiger on Flickr

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Rapefields

Rapefields

Extra walk: Cholsey to Goring

06-May-08 • moontiger on Flickr

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Rapefields

Rapefields

Extra walk: Cholsey to Goring

06-May-08 • moontiger on Flickr

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Fairly gentle climbs through Oxfordshire and Berkshire countryside ending with a southerly stretch along the Thames.

Oxfordshire SWC Walk 49 • Toughness: 3/10 • Length: 14 miles (24 km)

This walk offers a fine combination of gentle Oxfordshire countryside, wide grassy horse training gallops, a stretch of the Ridgeway with splendid views from the Berkshire Downs, and a final saunter along the banks of the Thames. Although the walk is fairly long, it has nothing too steep or demanding.

The main walk is best undertaken from mid spring to early autumn. With a fairly late start to accommodate the early lunch stop at The Red Lion Blewbury. The suggested tea stop is the Beetle and Wedge riverside restaurant at Moulsford, a place with ‘Wind in the Willows’ and ‘Three Men in a Boat’ associations. There are also plenty of hostelries in Streatley and Goring at the end of the walk.

Before starting the walk, devotees of Agatha Christie’s detective stories might want to make a short detour to visit the novelist’s grave in the churchyard of St Mary’s, Cholsey. To do this, follow the walk directions for the first 180 metres till you reach the railway bridge, but instead of turning left under the railway, turn right and follow the path for 700 metres as it climbs up to the church. Afterwards, retrace your steps and pass under the railway to rejoin the directions.

Full Details

grass

grass

YHA Pangbourne walk

19-Jul-09 • moontiger on Flickr

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Teasel

Teasel

YHA Pangbourne walk

19-Jul-09 • moontiger on Flickr

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Painted lady

Painted lady

YHA Pangbourne walk

19-Jul-09 • moontiger on Flickr

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river view

river view

YHA Pangbourne walk

19-Jul-09 • moontiger on Flickr

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under the railway bridge

under the railway bridge

YHA Pangbourne walk

19-Jul-09 • moontiger on Flickr

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over the footbridge

over the footbridge

YHA Pangbourne walk

19-Jul-09 • moontiger on Flickr

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down some steps

down some steps

YHA Pangbourne walk

19-Jul-09 • moontiger on Flickr

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Hilly route to Pangbourne for lunch, shorter return along the Thames

Oxfordshire SWC Walk 170 • Toughness: 3/10 • Length: 8 miles (14 km)

This walk offers fine views of the Thames valley from the inland heights above Goring. It visits both Pangbourne and Goring, two interesting and pretty riverside villages. The walk can be done in either direction, but the anti-clockwise direction does the hillier section first, saving the shorter flat Thames Path for after lunch. The Thames Path provides a fine contrast with the inland section.

It is possible to do just a short walk to Goring, in which case buy a ticket to Goring which is one stop down the line (further from London).

Martyn Hanks beautifully drawn user-friendly map (used here with the permission of Streatley YHA) means you'll have less time with your nose in the directions and more time to savour the beauty of this lovely countryside. Download from the link above.

YHA - Streatley Youth Hostel - beds from £15, rooms from £25 (2013 prices)

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A ridge walk over open downland with good views along a neolithic trail to an ancient hill fort. Very long or short option. Return by bus.

Oxfordshire SWC Walk 171 • Toughness: 5/10 • Length: 18 miles (30 km)

This walk follows a section of the Ridgeway National Trail, along an open grassy ridge with good views throughout. There is a short, and a very long version of the walk which follows Britains's oldest road dating back to neolithic times. The long version visits an ancient hill fort.

More recently, The Ridgeway is used by 4 wheel drives in winter, and by horses and mountain bikes year round. This means its surface can be rutted after dry weather, and muddy after wet weather.

The Ridgeway is quite remote, there are no pubs en-route, so bring a packed lunch

The walk starts by the Thames in Goring. It leaves it via a quiet lane. There is an option to avoid a little road walking at the start by detouring via Lough Hill (NT). Both routes meet up futher along the quiet lane.

After 2km, the lane becomes a track and reaches open downland with grass covered gentle hills and good views. It follows the open ridge for 8km / 5 miles to the A34 (motorway). Just before it, there is an option to cut the walk short to Chilton (nice pub, hourly buses to Didcot). This would make a nice winter walk.

Just after the A34, there is an option to finish at Harwell Science Park (regular buses, but no pub to wait in)

Alternatively, for the long walks, continue on along the Ridgeway for 6km / 4 miles. Here there is a shortcut to Wantage, 4km to the north.

The long walk continue on for 4km to Letcombe Castle, an ancient hill fort (free entry). Then its north 4km north to Wantage

From Wantage, a pretty town, there is a bus (via Hartwell Science parke which you walked by earlier) to Didcot Station for regular fast train back to London

Note that the last direct bus from Wantage to Didcot is quite early for such a long walk. Make sure you don't miss it. If you do there are hourly later buses north to Abingdon and either on to Oxford (where you'll need an extra train ticket as well), or change in Abingdon for a bus to Didcot. It'll take an hour longer, and cost a lot more

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View across the Thame Valley, from near Albury

View across the Thame Valley, from near Albury

SWC Walk 190 - Thame Circular

15-May-16 • thomasgrabow on Flickr

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Oxfordshire Golf Club (I)

Oxfordshire Golf Club (I)

SWC Walk 190 - Thame Circular

15-May-16 • thomasgrabow on Flickr

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Rycote House, from near entrance gate

Rycote House, from near entrance gate

SWC Walk 190 - Thame Circular

15-May-16 • thomasgrabow on Flickr

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The Prebendal, Thame

The Prebendal, Thame

SWC Walk 190 - Thame Circular

15-May-16 • thomasgrabow on Flickr

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Thame Town Hall

Thame Town Hall

SWC Walk 190 - Thame Circular

15-May-16 • thomasgrabow on Flickr

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Meadow near the start

Meadow near the start

Thame Circular walk

29-May-16 • Saturdaywalker on Flickr

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CIMG9964

CIMG9964

Cornmarket, Thame

23-Aug-15 • Sean O'Neill

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Scenic ramble through quiet villages in the Thame Valley on the Oxon/Bucks border, north of the Chilterns.

Oxfordshire SWC Walk 190 • Toughness: 3/10 • Length: 12 miles (21 km)

A scenic and easy ramble north of The Chilterns through the Thame valley on the Oxon/Bucks border that involves a short bus ride (on a frequent service) at the start and the finish of the walk. Set off in a westerly direction from the charming market town of Thame through a nature reserve and soon pass through a beautifully laid out golf course to join the Oxfordshire Way through the ancient Rycote Estate. Head north through a few quiet villages to lunch in Worminghall or Ickford. After lunch continue easterly, largely following the waymarked Thame Valley Walk, to the numerous tea options in Thame and then the return bus journey to Haddenham & Thame Parkway station.

Cuttle Brook Nature Reserve

Thame's award-winning nature reserve is a unique piece of 'semi-wild' countryside. Meandering through the reserve is a tributary of the River Thame called the Cuttle Brook, which springs to life in the Chilterns.

Oxfordshire Way

A 108 km (67 mi) waymarked linear Long Distance path linking the Heart of England Way at Bourton-on-the-Water with the Thames Path at Henley-on-Thames across the rolling limestone countryside of the Cotswold Hills.

Rycote

Rycote is Anglo Saxon and indicates a small group of dwellings amongst fields of rye. Rycote House was a great Tudor country house built on the site of an earlier mansion early in the 16th century, probably for Sir John Heron, Treasurer of the Chamber to first Henry VII and then Henry VIII. Henry VIII and his fifth wife, Catherine Howard, honeymooned here in 1540. It was long believed that Rycote House burned down in 1745 and that its remains were demolished in 1800, apart from one corner turret and some outbuildings. However, in 2001 Channel 4's Time Team investigated Rycote Park and established that Rycote had been rebuilt after the fire. Ca. 1920 the stables were converted into the present House.

Saint Michael’s Chapel

A Perpendicular Gothic building with a chancel, nave and west tower, founded as a chantry in 449 by the Lord and Lady of...

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View of Turville

View of Turville

27-May-15 • peter.boon on Flickr

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The Midsomer Murders Walk

Oxfordshire SWC Walk 223 • Toughness: 5/10 • Length: 14 miles (24 km)

This Thames Valley and Chilterns walk is inspired by the locations used in the Midsomer Murders TV series.

In many respects this is a similar walk to the Book 2 Walk 6 Henley circular via Stonor and Pishill walk. It’s a bit longer and a fair bit flatter but both go along one side of a valley in open countryside on the opening leg and return to Henley on the other side in the afternoon, often through attractive woodland. This walk, however, also finishes with a lovely, peaceful Thames path back to Henley

However this walk covers completely different territory to the Book 2 favourite visiting new villages and countryside not incorporated in other SWC Henley and Chilterns walks in the area. This is a high summer walk although shorter options can be done in autumn or winter given dry and sunny weather.

You should allow at least 11 hours for travel, refreshments and walking for the main walk.

Henley on Thames

This is a popular start and destination for a number of SWC walks and you can find details about the town in TOCW Volume 1 Walks 1, 9 and 51 and TOCW Volume 2 Walks 6,7 and 8.

This walk visits a number of places familiar to those who have done the relevant walks in Books 1 and 2 but after Hambledon you visit 2 or 3 villages that are not on the route of other Henley or Thames Valley walks in the SWC itinerary. These are:

Skirmett

An attractive hamlet where you pass a former flint church which has been converted into a home.

Fingest (optional)

The village name of Fingest comes from the Anglo Saxon name Thinghurst, meaning 'wooded hill where assemblies are made'. The parish church of St Bartholomew's dates from the early Norman period. It has an unusual tower, with a double vaulted roof. The church is a Grade I listed building .

Turville

A picture post card village which has not only featured in the Midsomer Murders but also the series the Vicar of Dibley. There is an old windmill on a hill giving splendid views of the village and surrounding countryside.

The beautiful St Mary...

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View mid afternoon

View mid afternoon

SWC Walk 242 Cholsey to Goring via Wallingford

22-Aug-15 • Saturdaywalker on Flickr

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Approaching South Soke

Approaching South Soke

SWC walk 242 Cholsey to Goring via Wallingford

22-Aug-15 • Saturdaywalker on Flickr

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Didcot power station (telephoto shot)

Didcot power station (telephoto shot)

SWC walk 242 Cholsey to Goring via Wallingford

22-Aug-15 • Saturdaywalker on Flickr

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Crossing the Cornfield

Crossing the Cornfield

SWC walk 242 Cholsey to Goring via Wallingford

22-Aug-15 • Saturdaywalker on Flickr

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Crossing the cornfield

Crossing the cornfield

SWC walk 242 Cholsey to Goring via Wallingford

22-Aug-15 • Saturdaywalker on Flickr

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Thames swans

Thames swans

22-Aug-15 • magyardave2002 on Flickr

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Hut on stilts

Hut on stilts

Thames

22-Aug-15 • magyardave2002 on Flickr

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The Thames Path to Wallingford, rolling hills and South Stoke, finishing along the Thames path

Oxfordshire SWC Walk 242 • Toughness: 4/10 • Length: 12 miles (21 km)

This is a companion walk to the Cholsey to Goring walk SWC 49 but takes a completely different route. It starts with a 2km stretch through the village of Cholsey to reach the riverside Thames path where you turn left and continue all the way to the bustling market town of Wallingford and your riverside lunch-time pub the Boat House.

After lunch you leave the river Thames and take paths around and across fields in the gently rolling Oxfordshire countryside with some fine and expansive views before visiting the attractive village of South Stoke and some refreshments at the Perch and Pike pub.

From South Stoke the short, last leg of the walk is along the Ridgeway and Thames Path to Goring where if you arrive before 5pm tea and cakes await you at Pierreponts café. Otherwise there are some excellent pubs in the village or you can rest by the river and enjoy the views before a short walk to the station.

The walk is best done in April to June or early autumn. It is a long, exposed walk so in hot, mid-summer weather, it could be fairly tiring.

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Follow the white arrows

Follow the white arrows

Going Circular via Hill Bottom

02-May-15 • moontiger on Flickr

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Rapefield with Didcot PS

Rapefield with Didcot PS

Going Circular via Hill Bottom

02-May-15 • moontiger on Flickr

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Yellow fringe

Yellow fringe

Going Circular via Hill Bottom

02-May-15 • moontiger on Flickr

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Woodland bouquet

Woodland bouquet

Going Circular via Hill Bottom

02-May-15 • moontiger on Flickr

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Wild Garlic

Wild Garlic

Going Circular via Hill Bottom

02-May-15 • moontiger on Flickr

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rapefield

rapefield

Going Circular via Hill Bottom

02-May-15 • moontiger on Flickr

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Green Alkanet

Green Alkanet

Going Circular via Hill Bottom

02-May-15 • moontiger on Flickr

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Rolling Chilterns countryside, forest trails, quiet country lanes and 3 pubs

Oxfordshire SWC Walk 243 • Toughness: 4/10 • Length: 11 miles (18 km)

This circular walk is best done anti-clockwise and the walk instructions are written to reflect this . It is a mix of beautiful, rolling Chilterns countryside, forest trails and quiet country lanes. This is a spring to early autumn walk. The best time to do it however is probably late April or early May when the foliage of the beech trees is at its most vibrant and where there should be good displays of bluebells and other spring flowers in some woods. Sections of the trails through woods will be muddy after rain.

There are very short but safe stretches along potentially busy roads. There are three pubs en route before you reach Goring. At the end of the walk there is Pierreponts, a lovely, friendly tea stop by the River Thames in Goring. It closes at 5pm on Saturdays (not open on Sundays) so you need to pace the walk accordingly (or catch an earlier train!)

This walk takes a completely different route to the Goring Circular SWC 17. Before lunch the route intersects in some parts with Time Out Book 1, Walk 4 and SWC 3 Walk 170.

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The Oxfordshire Way, the river Evenlode, gentle rolling hills, woods and fields that were the inspiration for Tolkien’s Hobbitshire, and 2 Cotswold villages

Oxfordshire SWC Walk 246 • Toughness: 2/10 • Length: 10 miles (18 km)

This Cotswolds walk mostly (but not exclusively) follows the Oxfordshire Way (OW) from Kingham to Charlbury and never strays far from the river Evenlode passing through a dreamy countryside of gentle rolling hills, woods and fields that were the inspiration for Tolkien’s Hobbitshire. It goes through two attractive Cotswolds villages, Shipton under Wychwood and Ascott under Wychwood which have the beautiful stone cottages in the traditional Cotswold’s style.

The OW is a bridleway and the pre-lunch section is well-used by horse riders that can make the going in some places very muddy after rain. Even during a period of dry weather parts of the morning route will be rutted. After lunch the going is much better. The walk is best done and appreciated after a period of dry weather from late April through the summer. The walk is stile-free; access to fields and woods is through kissing gates or farm gates.

Walk

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