Date(s) - 30/01/2021 - 31/01/2021
10:00 am - 4:30 pm
One year on since the pilot of our Seasonal Slow Marathons, back at a time when COVID was something that had happened only in a remote province of China. Our plan then was to run four weekend-long Seasonal Slow Marathons around the boundary of the Royal Borough of Greenwich as quite remarkably is almost a marathon in length.
Since then we have not led a single Seasonal Slow Marathon as a public event, although we have devised a Seasonal Slow around Cheltenham and the Cotswolds. Others are being devised in the Chilterns, the New Forest and around Salisbury.
As we are likely to be under strict gathering or movement restrictions at the end of January 2021, we are not going to run a led Seasonal Slow, but invite you to (where restrictions allow) independently follow the route we have devised and join fellow walkers remotely via WhatsApp.
Our plan is to devise at least 2 starting points at which we will offer timed starts (approximately 12 minutes apart) so that it will be unlikely that participants will be encroaching other’s space or endangering other participant’s safety.
The Greenwich route has been refined since the pilot in January 2020, it flows anti-clockwise and now links more green space and there are fewer sections dominated by south London suburbia! We invite you to walk half the marathon distance on the Saturday, and return on Sunday to where you ended your previous day’s walk, to complete the second half of the circular marathon route. You can choose to walk on both days, or simply walk a half marathon. Either is quite an achievement!
As we can’t walk up the centre of the Thames or along Deptford Creek and it isn’t much fun to walk along the A2, we believe we have created a pleasant route without being very far from the borough boundary. Greenwich may have been an Olympic borough, but it has many other spectacular places to visit, boasting a World Heritage site, The Millennium Dome, the Thames Barrier and the route crosses the Prime Meridian at least twice, stepping from one hemisphere to another. It’s northern boundary is the river Thames and our route will be on a National Trail but it will also include part of the Green Chain one of London’s six strategic walks. Greenwich is one of the greenest London boroughs, and there is a ridge of chalk that runs almost its entire central spine, which means that some of our route will involve climbing but we will try to avoid the steepest ascents. Whether by luck or judgement the borough boundary of Greenwich has very convenient public transport links, so it is easy to join the route at several points.
So we would like to invite you along to join us on a Seasonal Slow over the weekend of Saturday 30th and Sunday 31st of January. We want everyone to complete their day’s walk in daylight, so recommend starting as early as 8.00am but you can choose to start later, and last year we started at 10.00am and all (35 of us) covered a half marathon distance (c13 miles) in daylight.
Our two starting points are from the Thames foot tunnel entrance by the Cutty Sark (SE10 9HT) and walk along a route that includes passing through Deptford, running parallel with the Creek, climbing onto Blackheath, walking through Lee, Eltham and Oxleas Meadows to finish at Falconwood railway station (SE9 2RN)
Starting from Falconwood railway station walking north towards Lesnes Abbey Woods through Bostall Woods, along parts of the Green Chain, and then to Thamesmead, to join the Thames Path walking upstream towards the Cutty Sark. (SE10 9HT)
Once you have booked (see below) for a half (one day’s walk) or full marathon (both day’s walk) route, we will send you an invitation to choose the time and starting point for your walks. Ticket prices are for up to 6 people (COVID restrictions must be applied). Within in a week of the Seasonal Slow we will send you a gpx file of your route (we use ViewRanger as our route planning app – but there are many others from which to choose) and details for the WhatsApp group. In the event of tougher COVID restrictions, force us to cancel or postpone the event, we will refund your tickets in full.
It’s midwinter so please come prepared with warm waterproof clothing and sensible shoes for the most part you will be walking on footways but there are some rough tracks, through woods, across commons and within parks. Unfortunately the route is not fully accessible, and can become wet underfoot after heavy rain.
You will be walking for a minimum of six hours on each day covering a distance of between 12 and 14 miles, you can set your own pace. Please make sure you bring a packed lunch and a bottle of water as we cannot guarantee many refreshment stops along the route.