From Wandsworth Bridge, once again I have to move away from the riverside as there is more construction work going on behind this fencing.
Back onto a wide walkway where in the distance you can see the red gantries which lower rubbish from the waste disposal plant to waiting barges.
I soon found myself walking through another park - Wandsworth Park. Large trees now shaded my path as I wandered along listening to the sounds of the children playing in the park.
There are medieval churches on both sides of the river, (this photo just shows the tower of St Mary the Virgin) which would denote that Putney was an ancient crossing point of the Thames. Originally by ferry and then a wooden toll bridge was built here in 1729. The present bridge dates from 1884. Crossing the road now is a very busy junction at Putney, but once back by the river the traffic, noise and pollution seem a world away.
The pathway is now the pavement but all along the embankment are the slipways down into the river, whilst the rowing clubs by the road read like a list of some of the most prestigious private schools.
On the river were rowing fours or eights or the single sculls and the sound of megaphones from the bank or a motor boat shouting out instructions. Such a change in the river usage in such a short distance. Much more of a holiday feel from Putney Bridge onwards as access to the river is easier you can see children paddling in the water or feeding the numerous ducks.
The path then goes across a small bridge over a tributary and back onto the towpath.
It then crosses a small bridge over a tributary of the Thames before becoming the towpath again.
It has now become a very leafy and shaded pathway with trees on either side of the path
Looking through the fence it was good to see that the playing fields still existed but now privately owned rather than in the hands of the local authority. It wasn't clear from the signs whether local schools still used the facilities.
On the otherside of the lane next to the playing fields is the London Wetlands Centre. This used to be a reservoir when I worked in the area but is now a haven for numerous waterbirds. I decided to have a break from the Thames path and wander around the centre. More photos of the Wetland Centre on my other blog here
Back to the path after a very enjoyable couple of hours which included a delicious cream tea (scones with jam and cream and a pot of tea)
Hammersmith suspension bridge, built in 1887, designed by Sir Joseph Bazalgette who not only designed bridges but also solved the problem of the 'Big Stink' by installing a sewage system. The ironwork is full of elaborate designs.
After the bridge the path was enveloped by the trees and shrubs making it a delightfully cool walk. Every now and then the gaps in the greenery revealed the shimmering water of the river.
A cormorant drying out in the glorious sunshine. I was surprised how little water there appeared to be at this point in the river. Maybe it was the result of a particularly low tide.
I finished today's walk at Barnes Bridge which is a railway bridge and the station is across the road from the river which was just as well as a large blistered had appeared on my heel!