Sunday, August 4, 2013

Day 7: Shepperton to Windsor (Section 2)

Staines to Windsor

After lunch I crossed Staines Bridge to follow the path which now runs on the South side of the river. Everywhere seems very green and central London seems a long way from here. Getting to Staines took me a little longer than planned (too much chatting to those lovely Melbourne ladies) so I still have to walk over 9 miles to get to Windsor to catch a train home. Need to get a bit of a move on.

This is a city of London post. I think it is a coalpost which is informing merchants, under an act of 1831, that going downstream from here they will have to pay a levy on coal.

I thought this building was a very interesting design, seemingly built above ground possibly to prevent too much flood damage.

A great way to travel along the river. It looks such a small boat but it had a very noisy engine attached.
Another small wooden bridge taking me over a tributary of the Thames.

I could hear the traffic before I saw the bridge. This is the M25 the London orbital route. It is the busiest motorway in Europe carrying an average of 200,000 vehicles per day.
An elegant  double bridge carries the traffic over the Thames.

The path takes you through the garden of the Runnymede-on-Thames hotel. Much as I am tempted these seats are for residents only.

This is Bellweir Lock and I have caught up with the man in his motorised rowing boat. I don't think I would like to be waiting in such a small boat for the lock to fill up.

Look how still the water is here.
Lots of narrowboats moored here. The cost for mooring varies but sometimes it is free for the first 24 hours and then rises steeply for each day day you remain.

This area is the Runnymede meadows. This is what much of the land adjacent to the Thames would be like had it not been built upon. Since 1931 it has been administered by the National Trust for the benefit of all.

Passenger boats travel regularly from here to Eton and Windsor.
I came across many fishermen but didn't see much in the way of fish.

On the other side of the river is the island of Magna Carta, thought to be where the document was signed. The historic document signed by King John on 15 June 1215 signalled the birth of English liberty and was the forerunner of the Amercan Bill of Rights in 1791 and the United Nations Charter of June 1945.
Three memorials were erected in this area in the 50s and 60s. The first in 1953 was the Commonwealth Air Forces Memorial which stands at the top of the hill.
Crossing this field and walking away from the river you come to a small Greek-style temple which houses the monument commemorating the signing of the Magna Carta.

Here I met this wonderful couple. I was quite taken by Marjorie's hair and outfit.We chatted for ages. Neville was a retired music teacher but still played the trumpet each day. As he had played in such prestigious places like the Albert Hall in London, I can only assume that he is very talented. They were just about to return to the river to their camper home for an afternoon drink and kindly invited me to join them but I still had a few miles left before reaching Windsor so sadly I said goodbye  and went to find the Kennedy memorial before returning to the path. 

This is the entrance to the John F Kennedy Memorial. 50 steps, representing the States of America lead the way to a simple stone slab.

The stone tells us that the surrounding acre of land has been given, in perpetuity, to the United States.

These two gatehouses are the entrance to Runnymede

Returning to the path I stride out for Windsor but it isn't long before I have to leave the path and walk along the road.

Walking by the river I am anxious to get my first glimpse of Windsor Castle but to no avail. I seem to be walking for miles.

Old Windsor Lock

At this point I have to leave the riverside and follow the path through the fields wondering if I will see the river again

Finally I arrive back at the riverside looking across the river at Windsor great park and I can just about see the castle in the distance.. But it isn't long before I have to leave the riverside again and continue along the road into the town.

At last a view of the castle and so ends a very long day's walking. I decide I am too tired to look around the town tonight but it will do that on my next day of the walk.  I make my way to the station to get on the first of 3 trains plus the underground to get home!


  1. You so adventurous to do all this walking and travelling to get home. But I love coming with you easily from my desk chair.

  2. Great narration you are giving here. Unfortunatly you will be finding more of th epath deviates from the river due to riverside dwellings, Such a shame.

  3. Such a Spectacular tour which full with the lot peace and enjoy. the places looking beautiful and delightful in the photographs.
    Great post.

  4. What an effort. I think Liz should be there at Windsor to greet you before you depart on your next walk. Btw, are the Melbourne sisters blogging their walk?

  5. Fantastic shots from your walk.

  6. I immensely enjoyed walking with you along the river seeing thepark, the London post, the bridges, the lock, the Kennedy memorial, the lovely buildings, the castle and the place where King John signed the Magna Charta. It was a real treat to see all these sights. Thank you.

  7. Thank you for taking us along on your walk. I must confess I would not have managed such a marathon so have enjoyed it from my office chair! I have never been to this area but the history that you have put with the shots was so informative and I thoroughly enjoyed it. I would have been tempted to join Marjorie and Neville, they looked like a fun couple xx

  8. Delightful shots! the tour looking enjoyable and relaxable.
    thanks for sharing your experience through this post and its photographs.


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