» weekly walk ¦ What You Can Get Away With

a>We’re heading west this week, and I’ve attempted to give a theme to the walk, of what humans have done to the landscapes of Colchester over the year. People have been living here for thousands of years, and every passing wave of them has left their mark on the area in one way or another. Stone, however, isn’t very common around here, so large walls weren’t always an option, and so lots of earth was moved to provide defences and define boundaries – and some of those boundaries remain today.

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For this weeks walk, I decided to find a route that linked two open spaces that are quite close to me in a non-obvious way. You could walk between these two spots in about ten minutes or so, but I thought it would be more interesting to find a big loop.

Officially, this isn’t a circular walk, as it starts and finishes in two different places, but it wouldn’t be too hard to make it into a circuit to and from North Station. As it is, however, it starts from Cymbeline Meadows, just off the Avenue of Remembrance, loops round through West Bergholt and Great Horkesley, then finishes off with a stroll through High Woods.

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I guess it’s time to start my new series of posts. From now on, every Sunday I’ll be posting details of a walk – usually around the Colchester area – with some photos and links included for you to find out more. This serves a double purpose – getting me out for some more exercise and hopefully also encouraging people to get out walking around here more. While we may not have the stunning mountain scenery of some parts of the country – what’s termed a hill round here is normally referred to as a speed bump in the rest of the country – there are interesting places to go, and one of the benefits of being without steep slopes is that it’s a lot easier to walk longer distances.

We’ll start with a very easy stroll down the river to Wivenhoe:

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Off for a walk

Having been thwarted in my desire to walk last week thanks to the terrible weather, I didn’t miss the chance to get out today. It’s quite strange to be out walking again round here after a week in the North, especially when your body’s just adapting to a slope, getting ready for a climb and then it tops out at 50m above sea level.

While I was out, I was wondering if I should start detailing some of my walking routes here, perhaps as a first step on the route to becoming the Colcestrian Wainwright (further steps include developing legible writing and beyond-stick-figure artistic skills and then culminate in becoming an old reactionary). I think there are lots of interesting walks to be found round here. While routes round here aren’t technologically challenging (taking a wrong turn may lead you into a few more nettles rather than having to negotiate your way up or down a scree slope, for instance) there are various paths and ways that aren’t too well-known, and the idea of doing my bit to promote Colchester as a walking destination appeals to me.

So, I think I’ll start posting up a weekly walk, along with a few directions and pictures to guide anyone wanting to follow it. If nothing else, it motivates me to get out and get some exercise.

To whet your appetite, you might want to look at some of my pictures from previous walks out to Manningtree, Bures, Stoke-by-Nayland, Tiptree and Mersea, or a walk from Sudbury down to Great Horkesley.

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