I decided to venture out on this lovely Sunny Sunday morning, to enjoy it for I could…. I thought I would start out by completing the rest of the “Belmont Trail” which I had discovered the previous week. Trees line along this part of trail, giving it a false sense of illusion that it is a nature walk, rather than an old abandoned railway. It was just about possible to make out urban dwellings hiding behind the trees! Eventually the trail came to an abrupt end and there were no particular signs to say that this was the “end”. As there were no visible signs as to go which way next, I presumed that there was nothing more of the trail to venture down!
For the next part of my walk, I was pounding the pavements for some time. I was feeling a little bewildered, as I really had not quite thought through about where to go next! Eventually I reached Harrow Weald, walking past the Wealdstone Pub, which was not open as it was under refurbishment (and it was way too early to go in anyway!). As I crossed the road, I noticed a very large rock that stood outside the inn. This rock is a “Sarsen Stone”, and dates back thousands of years, these kinds of stones were actually used to build the amazing Stonehenge, this one merely marks the boundary between the parishes between Harrow and Harrow Weald. It has certainly survived the ravages of time. Strolling onwards, my route was to take me on along Long Elms and on to Headstone Lane Station. It was here that I decided to change direction, as I discovered a public bridleway!
|From 2015 – 01.02.2015 – Belmont – Pinner Walk|
Originally I had walked past the bridleway entrance as there was a notice for the St Marys Cricket Club saying restricted Access, which made me ignore it. The pubic bridleway sign was on the opposite side of the road and very small! It was a joy to walk after walking a the pavements, the sun was beaming down and the air was very fresh indeed. It really felt like I was in the countryside and the urban feel had been left behind. I was entirely surrounded by “Pinner Park Farm”, which is roughly 230 acres in size! Pinner Park has existed since the C13th, when it was extensively woodland, but its landscape changed over the years when the trees were cut down. From the C15th when deer roaming the land, to arable crops in C16th and then a change to meadowland in C18th. By C19th the area was given out to farmers, now only one farm remains and is designated a “Site of Nature of Conservation Importance”. I am not surprised seeing how beautiful it is! I was shocked to learn that Harrow Council plan to close the farm and build on it however!
The bridleway took me through the farm and reached the next road, only for me to take the next part of the bridleway across the following field. It took me uphill giving me a wonderful view across Harrow and beyond. It really was a pity there was no bench there for me to sit and ponder away the hours and watch the world go by! But hey ho, the bridleway had soon come to an end where it brought me out into a peaceful residential area. The first house that I noticed had a blue plaque to “Sir Ambrose Heal” a furniture craftsman of the early C20th. He was the founder of the Heals furniture firm and changed the look of furniture design and made it accessible to the middle classes. The time paper described as “one of the great artists and craftsmen of his time.”. Heals still has a department store in Central London today!
|From 2015 – 01.02.2015 – Belmont – Pinner Walk|
I followed the pavements around past the Pinner War Memorial, and I was then confronted by a very large and imposing C17th mansion house. This was “Pinner House”, in the C18th was home to the Great Grandaughter of Charles II and Nell Gywnn, Mary Beauclerc who was married to the Vicar of Pinner and Harrow. The lovely home has stood the test of time and the C17th facade has remained intact, but it is now home to very different residents. Just past Pinner house was St John the Baptist Church, a lovely local Parish Church, when looking up the church to see if it had much history or anything of note, I could not really find very much, but it was said of it “one more of the all round typical minor Middlesex churches”. Sir Nicholas Pevsner , however it still looked very beautiful.
At last I had reached Pinner High Street, which was very quaint indeed. I will admit when I looked across the road to see that the “Old Bakery” was now just a shop and further down the road, a pub was now a high class restaurant it was a strange juxtaposition of images that I was assaulted with. Pinner has Royal Patronage, when in C14th King Edward III granted an annual fair to be held in Pinner every year at the feast of St John the Baptist, Midsummer. By C17th the high Street had a Butcher, a baker and even a candlestick maker…. when I found this out it reminded me of this Nursery Rhyme!
Hey! rub-a-dub, ho! rub-a-dub, three maids in a tub,
And who do you think were there?
The butcher, the baker, the candlestick-maker,
And all of them gone to the fair…
The high street may be made up of beautiful older buildings but they hold newer fancy shops, not traditional craftsman. As far as I am aware the Annual Pinner Fair still takes place today, but it has more of a carnival atmosphere to it :). I followed the high street round and made may way to Pinner Station where I ended my walk for the morning.
Photos taken on the walk
|2015 – 01.02.2015 – Belmont – Pinner Walk|