Chess Valley – Rickmansworth Walk – 07.08.2011

Our walk would visit 3 places Rickmansworth, Croxley Green and Chorleywood! All in one morning 🙂 . Having looked at a map this time, we had sought out a new route to tackle. In fact the path we were going to take was the “Chess Valley Walk” some of which we had walked previously.

We started out passing through part of Croxley Green; crossing over Scots Hill where we turned into a side road for the Restaurant “Scotsbridge Mill”.  We hesitated at first as the signage for the restaurant dominated the side road and we felt nervous about walking on to private property! It did not help when we could not locate any public footpath signs either.   However, it was not long before we located the path in the football field which was straight opposite the restaurant.

“Scotsbridge Mill” had originally been built to be a Corn Mill, however in approximately 1746 Scotsbridge was converted into a Paper Mill. It seems that Ricksmanworth had 5 paper mills just before the 19th Century and was a major player in the Paper making Industry in Hertfordshire. Scotsbridge Mill is the only remaining example of a paper mill in Ricksmanworth. In the late 1980’s the building was bought by a restaurant chain and refurbished at a substantial cost.

After walking through the football field, we could not quite see where the footpath was as it is not quite that obvious. As it seemed to be very wooded and there were no particular footpath signs. Luckily for us, there were quite a few dog walkers coming the other way which gave us a major clue as to where to go. Once we had negotiated the trees, the path opens out and runs parallel to the River Chess. It is very pleasant and quite tranquil

From 2011 – 07.08.2011 – Chess Valley Walk – Rickmansworth Walk

The River was quite shallow and clear, but sadly I could not see any particular fish in it. Perhaps they were just to quick for me! There were plenty of reeds so perhaps they were hiding out. I don’t recall seeing much birdlife either, perhaps it was just the time for the birds to take a holiday lol. At this point the path is very wide and quite green with weeping willow hanging over the river. It was very tempting to sit on the bench that was provided even though we had not walked far, just so we could “while away” the rest of morning!

As we passed the large tree through the path comes to a small crossroads. We could have either walked across the River Chess, or carried on the route along the Chess Valley Walk. We decided to continue our route. The path took on a brand new persona. It became more like a muddy track rather than a public footpath. It seemed to have been ready for some sort of farm vehicles! We were no longer walking alongside the river. It was hidden behind trees and a metal fence.

Eventually the track led us out to some open land. It did not seem to be farmland, or if it was part of the farmland it had been left to become fallow. Regardless the horses that roamed the fields, were certainly enjoying it! We could see a magnificent building in the distance, unfortunately the path does not really go near it, as far as I have since found out could be part of Loudwater farm which would explain the huge amount of land that surrounded it!

From 2011 – 07.08.2011 – Chess Valley Walk – Rickmansworth Walk

At this point the path reached Loudwater Lane, where we decided to turn off the Chess Valley Walk. If we had continued we would have met up with our previous walk which started out near the troutstream way .   We took the path away from Loudwater lane, which takes a reasonable climb to the road. It was quite scary at one point to find a tree that had fallen straight through a fence as result of wind. When we reached the road we realised we were about to be welcomed back into Rickmansworth as we had just been in Chorleywood! Nice to know we had been in 3 different places in one morning, as we had started out in Croxley Green!

We took a short cut which passed the Royal Masonic School. The school was originally founded in 1788 by Chevalier Ruspini to educate the daughters of Freemasons who were unable to support their families for a variety of reasons for example illness. The School was not always based in Rickmansworth, when it started out with only 15 pupils, it was based in East London and moved twice more before finally settling in Rickmansworth in 1934. The school is still thriving today and the school building is even being used for film location! If you have seen Raiders of the Lost Ark or the Last Crusade, Dr. Jones school Room was actually filmed in this very school!

The path is lined by large trees, which made me feel quite small. Although I have walked in woods before, I think the way these trees are planted up the footpath feels quite claustrophobic 😦 . It was not long before the path led us to another crossroads. We decided to follow the bridge into Rickmansworth. It was nice to know that somehow we had picked up the “Chess Valley Walk” but from another perspective! We were not quite sure how that happened! We did follow the route and it took us in to a supermarket car park no less! We will need to follow up on this route another time.

Somehow the walk had taken us right back to where we started so we decided to complete our walk for the day and have some Sunday Lunch!

Please feel free to click on the photo to look at all the photos from the walk –

2011 – 07.08.2011 – Chess Valley Walk – Rickmansworth Walk

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One response to “Chess Valley – Rickmansworth Walk – 07.08.2011

  1. Pingback: Borehamwood – Elstree Walk – 29.06.2012 « Karen's Sponsored Walks

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