Maidenhead to Marlow
3 July. The Thames Path can be underrated amongst our long distance routes. It provides great walking in the ‘Three Men in a Boat’ upper reaches, down to the atmospheric marshes around the estuary evoked by Conrad and Dickens. The iconic maps of ‘Eastenders’ and the London Underground remind us of how the river flows past many of our famous buildings and landmarks.
Our group of 10 walked the stretch known to readers of ‘Wind in the Willows’, Kenneth Grahame being one of Cookham’s famous residents. The group should have been larger, but the leader and his wife had to self-isolate due to a random contact. (If you are reading this after 2050, see ‘covid19’ on whichever device you now use).
Maidenhead Bridge is the starting point for the river walk, a park and cafe near Boulter’s Lock providing a break for those who reached it from the station. The path leaves the road soon after, passing Clivedon on the opposite bank before turning inland to Cookham. The gallery of Stanley Spencer, another famous former resident is on the corner of the High Street and nearby is the attractive churchyard, a good alternative for those not lunching at the pub.
Elizabeth noted that the weather was perfect for such a walk, cloudy with some sunny intervals, and that it was lovely rambling by the water seeing much activity with rowers, and dogs swimming. Maybe too many dogs for some of our members?
Tony and Mary-Jane had much enjoyed the afternoon route over Winter Hill to Marlow on their recce. But the Thames path route over the railway bridge to Bourne End provides a more gentle stroll onwards to that popular destination. Our leaderless, but not rudderless, group as always enjoyed the company and the country air. Thanks to Ginny for photos. Tony