London Capital Ring 5

Start: Brent Cross Bus Station

Finish: Couch Hill Overground

Length: 12.1 km / 6.8 miles

Weather: Grey and overcast, sunny later

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A tedious bus journey took me to the start of this section - the Brent Cross Shopping Centre!! The time table said it would take 40 minutes, but thanks to another go-slow driver and busy roads it took over an hour.

 

 

I trudged my way around the shopping centre, through the extensive car park only to be confronted by the A41 and a dismal '60s smelly, underpass. Quite possibly this was the one where they filmed the violent scenes for A Clockwork Orange.

 

Walked over a footbridge, which took me over the Northern Line and into Hendon Park, the first signs that this may be a pleasant, rural type of walk.

 

Pointing the way.

 

Wooded area and stream beside the North Circular (out of shot, a few hundred yards away).

 

The London Capital Ring runs adjacent to the Dollis Valley Greenwalk.

 

The lovely North Circular is nearby, just on the brough of the hill. This is near the major junction with the A1. The A1 eventually makes it's way to Edinburgh.

 

Dollis Valley Greenwalk.

 

 

Northway Gardens, near to Mutton Brook.

 

Very attractive houses in the Hampstead Garden Suburb, near to East Finchley tube. Unfortunately it was obviously bin-day.

The Garden Suburb was the idea of Henrietta Bennett. She set up a trust which acquired land to extend the Heath and develop housing to integrate the mixed community. The scheme only lasted a couple of decades and has since become one of the most affluent areas of London. In doing so it has excluded most of the community that it originally set out to integrate.

 

Welcome to Highgate Woods. Lovely gate if you like that sort of thing.

 

Walking down through Highgate Woods towards the entrance of Queen's Wood.

 

 

Walking up to Highgate Village. This path brings you out just beside the library.

 

The next section followed the Parkland Walk, along a disused railway line.

The railway line was originally opened in 1867. During the 1930s work started to turn it into a branch of the Northern Line, but work was stopped when WWII started. The line was closed to passenger traffic in 1954 and all other trains in 1970. In the 80s there were plans to turn it into a motorway, luckily this didn't happen it is now a lovely walking route.

 

 

The platforms can be seen just beyond the bridge where a station used to be.

 

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