Isle of Grain - Almost Circular

Sun 18th Nov 2012

Walk Details:

Event Details Updated
Please note this train departs Victoria and not Charing X/ London Bridge as previously advised. Train route via Rochester.
Event Type
Group Walk
Region
Southern England
Local Group
London
Distance
19ml.
Start Time
09.31
Route
From Strood stn. Dep Victoria 08.24; . Return from Higham Station (2 trains an hr). Cars: park Higham and join Strood train at 09.24. Arrives Strood 9.29

Pub: Horseshoe & Castle, Cooling (menu for choice in advance) or picnic

General Notes
The Isle of Grain forms a backdrop in several novels by Charles Dickens. The distinctive area the walk visits - based on the Saxon Shore Way - brings together estuarine, recovered marshland, woodland and open farmland/orchards. The church at Cooling is recognised as a location in Great Expectations. Dickens was an avid long distance walker and will have known the paths of Grain well. This isn't a walk about Dickens but it may add extra flavour for his readers and it is the bicentennial of his birth
Start and Finish

Entry Details:

Cost

Walk Report

Isle of Grain - Almost Circular, Sunday 18th November 2012
23 walkers, 19 miles - leader Godfrey O'Callaghan
22 London group, 1 Kent group and a dog completed the 19-mile walk (19 mls. 500 yds. to be exact according to a Google Earth Fly-Over emailed by Nicole). The group enjoyed exceptionally good weather with barely a hint of a breeze - in fact the early sheltered miles along the Medway had people reducing their layers. The water - of which there was plenty - was often a mirror-like calm.
At lunch, those attracted to the local hostelry were well looked after. Sandwich eaters sat in Cooling churchyard - and cool it was despite the sunshine - and were later joined by the imbibers for a brief reflection on Pip's first encounter with Magwich. A few meters down the road we almost joined a wedding party - having been mistaken for the bride's family - who were lined up for photos with a backdrop of the impressive Cooling Castle gateway.
The pace was good as headed between lakes, waterways and along the banks of a Thames swollen by the incoming tide, into a setting sun that slowly settled into a colourful sunset. A contented group arrived at Higham Station at twilight after a satisfying day out.

Maps:

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