Circular and Linear Walks

A view across the river from the Thames Path

Circular and Linear Walks

Distance 5.5 miles / 8.85 km.
The route takes you through a variety of scenery from water meadows beside the River Thames to the chalk grassland and yew woodland on the slopes of the Hartslock Nature Reserve. There are no stiles and the walk is fairly flat until the incline up Hartslock Hill. Beware: the Thames floods low ground here during the winter. Before you set out, check the Environemnt Agency Floodline 0845 9881188. For further information on the Hartslock Reserve, please visit www.hartslock.org.uk. This is a reserve managed by BBOWT.



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Water walk: This walk takes you through the dramatic Goring Gap, with the hills dominating the Berkshire Downs to the west and the wooded Chilterns to the east. The Goring Gap is the narrowest part of the Thames Valley with the river and a railway nestled between the hills either side. Downstream of Goring the walk takes you under Brunel’s red brick railway bridge and over the only one of the two remaining toll bridges on the river, in Whitchurch
Refreshments: You will find several lovely pubs in Goring. In Whitchurch there is the Ferry Boat or Greyhound and Pangbourne boasts more enjoyable hostelries, including The Swan which overlooks the river and is where an exhausted Jerome K Jerome finished his journey in ‘Three Men in a Boat’.

Distance: 5 miles
Duration: 2 hours
Train stations: Goring & Streatley, and Pangbourne



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A stIle-free walk of 5.5 miles encompassing the Hambleden Valley and the village of Medmenham near the River Thames between Henley and Marlow.



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Kelmscott is well known for the house where William Morris lived, and is popular with visitors in summer.  Here is a short (1 mile) circular walk to find peace by the river and Thames Path.  Starting from the gates of the Manor House, walk down the track to the river, where the Thames Path has a sign to the right, across a footbridge, through a  gate and into a field. Follow the Thames Path beside the river, past a pillbox, until you reach a gate at the end of the large field. Turn right over a stile to take the path at the edge of the field. As you turn, note the boats moored on the opposite side of the river, around a white building that was once the Anchor Inn.  The path along the edge of the field goes through a hedge and across a stream. Continue ahead between two field to the next hedgerow where the path turns right back to Kelmscott. The footpath leads into a lane which comes to the Plough Inn. Check opening times if you want a meal at the pub.  The road ahead goes back to the Manor House and the car park.



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This circular walk of three miles starts at Newbridge and follows the Thames Path beside the river for about a mile and a half.  Start at the Rose Revived Pub and walk downriver through the meadows. When you reach a wooden footbridge, cross over to the Appleton side of the river.  The bridge is known by various names, including Rainbow, but Harts Bridge recalls the name of a weir that used to be at this place.  There was once  a small wharf serving the nearby farms, but all signs of this are buried under bushes and nettles. 

From the bridge, the route goes through a copse to a small field and though a hedge.  After the hedge, look for a metal kissing gate on the right hand side. This starts the footpath that goes back to  Newbridge.  The footpath follows the line of the hedgerows, with metal gates between each field, until you are within sight and sound of the road from Kingston Bagpuize to Newbridge.  In this last field, the path goes through the hedgerow to a small wood, where it leads you back to Newbridge near the Maybush Inn. 



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A good time to make this walk at Cricklade is in April and May when the fritillaries are in bloom.   It is a wonderful sight – thousands of delicate flowers creating a purple haze on the meadow.

 

(http://www.crickladeinbloom.co.uk/cricklade_north_meadow_walks.html)
 

Starting from the car park at Fairview Recreation Field by Calcutt Street (B4040), walk round the edge of the recreation field to the Thames, and follow the Thames Path through the northern side of Cricklade to North Meadow (about 1 mile).   Passing the Red Lion, you can decide whether to fortify yourself with a glass of the Thames Trail Ale before or after your walk. 

In North Meadow, there is a path path around the edge, which is the Thames Path until it leaves the meadow. Staying in the meadow, the path goes round the fritillaries to reed beds beside the River Churn, and bends round to an entrance at Weavers Bridge.  From this point, a network of paths lead back to Cricklade, meeting the Thames Path on the way. There is so much to see that it usually takes about 90 minutes to get round the Meadow although the distance is only 2 miles.



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Distance: 10 miles
Duration: 4 hours
Water walk: This lovely rural walk invites you to explore the city of Oxford before setting off for greener surroundings. Just a
few miles downstream from Oxford you’re encouraged to take a short detour from Iffley Lock to visit the village’s fabulous
Norman church. Continuing the walk downstream you pass through Sandford Lock, which boasts the largest fall of water from
its weir and is a pretty impressive sight. Just beyond Abingdon Lock you reach Abingdon Bridge - the original bridge was built
in 1422 with 14 arches, and the current structure still retains a medieval feel. The walk finishes in Abingdon, one of the most
important historic towns on the River Thames, with a magnificent town hall and abbey founded as early as 675AD.
Refreshments: You will find several pubs dotted along this section of the Thames Path. Try the Isis Tavern, delightfully
situated on the path just before Iffley Lock or the Kings Arms at Sandford Lock.
Train stations: Oxford has good train links. Abingdon does not have a train station but does have an excellent bus service
where you can get a bus back to Oxford.
Boat trips: During the summer months you can walk in one direction and get a boat back. See Salters Steamers
for details.



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Water walk: From Reading train station you can join the Thames Path at Caversham Lock. As you ramble downstream you reach Horseshoe Bridge which crosses the mouth of the Kennet and Avon Canal as it joins the Thames. From Reading to Sonning cyclists can share the Thames Path but once you reach Sonning the path narrows so is only suitable for walkers again. The walk to Shiplake takes you through lovely rural countryside

Refreshments: In Sonning you will find the picturesque Bull Inn, visited by Jerome K Jerome in ‘Three Men in a Boat’. The Bull Inn is just off the Thames Path and can be accessed by walking through a small church graveyard. Alternatively you could start the walk early and reach the Baskerville in Shiplake in time for lunch, just a few minutes walk from the train station.

Distance: 6½ miles
Duration: 2½ hours

Train stations: Reading and Shiplake

Boat trips: During the summer months you can walk in one direction and get a boat back. See
http://www.salterssteamers.co.uk/readhen.htm for details.



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Henley to Hambleden: (This short route is approximately 2¼ miles, the longer one is 7½ miles. Please see download for details).

Picturesque Henley-on-Thames is located on the banks of the River Thames in Oxfordshire, 6 miles north of Reading.Henley is a historic market town with a wide range of shops, cafes and restaurants to suit most tastes and budgets.

From Henley Hart Street cross the bridge over the River Thames on the left hand side. Once over the bridge turn left, following the signs for the Thames Path toHambleden Lock, the path between the buildings will take you onto the side of the River. Follow the path for 2¼ miles until you reach Hambleden Lock. You can divert to Remenham village to see the traditional brick and flint Church of St Nicholas Remenham.

 

 



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The downloadable leaflet features details of hree walks that take you in and around the town of Wallingford -one a stroll by the river and through the town, one taking in the riverside path and two bridges and the third taking in the river and Benson Lock.

Walk 1:  Wallingford Town distance 1.5 miles
Walk 2: Two Bridges distance 2.5 miles
Walk 3:Walk 3 to Benson Lock 3 miles, approximately 1 -1.5 hours

The longer walk is plotted on the map.



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