Henley Walking Festival 2021

The festival will take place from Wednesday May 26th and Wednesday June 2nd 2021.

Henley on Thames is a fantastic venue for this type of event and is a wonderful base for walking enthusiasts as it offers walks from the town and its beautiful countryside within the Chilterns Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. From walks around Henley itself, Nordic walking, “bus” walks, short and long strenuous walks, the Henley Walking Festival has it all.

The Henley Walking Festival is organised by Walkers are Welcome Henley on Thames, in collaboration with the Chiltern Walking Festival.


Walk 1 : A Wildlife Wish

A gentle circular adventure that passes through diverse wildlife habitats with plenty of time for stopping and spotting. We shall use stepping stones to cross the cold stream and walk along tree lined footpaths to meet the River Thames Tow Path. On our return we shall stop to make a wish at the Wishing Tree feed the ducks! So pack a camera, a ribbon and duck food for the full experience! We use stepping stones to cross a small stream. Wear sensible clothing and shoes, some footpaths may be muddy. Children need to be 6 years old, accompanied and observed by an adult at all times. Plenty to see and do even if the weather is challenging. We will have many moments to pause and take photographs these are normally dictated by the younger participants in the group! Don't forget to pack a ribbon to tie to the Wishing Tree and duck food for when we walk the Tow Path. There is plenty to do even if the weather is challenging and plenty to reminisce for the not so young amongst us!

  • Wednesday 26th May @ 10:45
  • Meet outside the River and Rowing Museum, RG9 1BF
  • Distance: 1 Mile / 1.6 km
  • Contact: Catherine Notaras catnotaras@gmail.com / 07474 095807
  • Sorry, no dogs please.

Walk 2 : Henley Regatta Course & Thames Path

Circular walk following the Regatta course along the Thames Path, pass Temple Island and Hambleden Lock to Aston, (possible drink stop at The Flowerpot  pub), return over hills and fields. Leisurely pace with some gentle inclines.

  • Thursday 27th May @ 10:15
  • Meet at Henley Town Hall, RG9 2AQ
  • Distance: 5.25 Miles / 8.5 km
  • Contact: Henley & Goring Ramblers, Peter & Jeanne Stone (01491 412330 / 07747 842023)

Walk 3 : A Ramble with ‘Our Mutual Friend’

On this Literary Hitchhike with ‘Our Mutual Friend’ from the historic riverside town of Henley-on-Thames our companion is Charles Dickens. The riverside world fascinated Dickens and as we ramble along the
riverbank we discover how the rural Thames, beyond the more familiar Dickensian London and ‘where the water is cleaner’, flows through his works linking the lives of his characters. Our 7 mile walk starts out
from the bandstand in Mill Meadows, Henley. We follow the Thames Path National Trail between Marsh Lock and Hambleden Lock, returning over the hill via Aston.

Young people age 14 + welcome. Must be capable of walking the distance and must be accompanied by parent/guardian who shall be responsible for them at all times.

  • Friday 28th May @ 10am
  • Meet by the Bandstand, Mill Meadow, Henley, RG9 1BF
  • Distance 7 Miles / 11 km
  • Sorry, no dogs please.
  • Ticket Price £12
  • Contact: Pipsticks Walks, Philippa Sanders, 07710 453087, pipstickswalks@gmail.com

Walk 4 : An evening on the top of the Chilterns

Nettlebed is a quaint village high in the Chilterns. Walks from here offer superb views and today we have chosen the most beautiful walk from the village. Walking to the north, we pass next to Warburg Nature Reserve, with superb views over the rolling hills towards Maidensgrove. Returning through the woods back to Nettlebed we enjoy good views again.
There is an option to join us for a drink and or eat at the White Hart pub after the walk. The walk will be at a leisurely pace.

  • Friday 28th May @ 19:00
  • Meet at the back of the White Hart pub, High Street, Nettlebed, RG9 5DD
  • Please park at the village hall, or at the village green
  • Distance 3.2 Miles / 5 km
  • Suitable for children of 10 years and upwards
  • Contact: Henley & Goring Ramblers, Alie Hagedoorn (07894 580413)

Walk 5 : Hambleden Valley and 3 Chiltern villages

This walk goes through the beautiful Hambleden valley and visits the 3 lovely villages of Turville, Fingest and Skirmett. We will have a stop halfway the Barn at Turville Heath. Good views especially at Turville and the Hambleden Valley. Moderate pace, some steep inclines

  • Saturday 29th May @ 10am
  • Meet at Hambleden Village Car Park, RG9 6RP (by the Stag & Huntsman Inn - Note parking charge)
  • Distance 10.5 Miles / 17 km
  • Suitable for children of 10 years and upwards
  • Contact: Henley & Goring Ramblers, Alie Hagedoorn (07894 580413)

Walk 6 : Henley on Thames - Exploring the Town

Circular walk exploring the town past Friar Park where the late George Harrison lived, St. Mary’s Church where Dusty Springfield is buried, Christ Church URC where Humphrey Gainsborough was a minister as well as being engineer and inventor. See the location of Brakspears old Henley Brewery, the Kenton Theatre, the Regatta course and the River & Rowing Museum. Easy walk at a leisurely pace on good paths.

  • Sunday 30th May @ 10:15
  • Meet at Henley Town Hall, RG9 2AQ
  • Distance 3 Miles / 5 km
  • Contact: Henley & Goring Ramblers, Peter & Jeanne Stone (01491 412330 / 07747 842023)
  • Sorry, no dogs please.

Walk 7 : High Chilterns of Swyncombe & Ewelme Downs

We leave Cookley Green and head straight towards St Botoph's church through the woodland and then open meadow, in the hamlet of Swyncombe. This is followed by the short stretch of Swyncombe Down with far reaching views. We head down into the valley to Ewelme and the famous alms houses where we will stop for our picnic lunch. The afternoon takes us across Ewelme Down along the Chiltern Way on the edge of the escarpment. We pass Ewelme Park and head back to Cookley Green.

This is a lengthy walk with undulations. Any children need to be used to walking this distance; this is a more challenging walk with fitness required. A picnic lunch is necessary. There is a single toilet at the alms houses.

  • Sunday 30th May @ 10am
  • Meet behind the bus shelter at Cookley Green, RG9 6EN (free parking available)
  • Distance 12 Miles / 19.3 km (with just over 1,000 ft of ascent)
  • Contact: Henley & Goring Ramblers, Susan Maguire (07835  872791)

Walk 8 : Fun family walk with refreshments

A gentle circular walk exploring the woods around Nettlebed. The kids will love checking questions on various points on the walk

Refreshments will be provided towards the end of the walk, while creating tree trunk drawings and we will finish walking the play trail in the woods. The walk will be at an easy pace, and all children 6 years and older are welcome. Children must be accompanied by parent/guardian who shall be responsible for them at all times.

  • Monday 31st May @ 14:00
  • Meet at Nettlebed Green, near The Kiln RG9 5BA
  • Free parking available
  • Distance 2.5 Miles / 4 km
  • Contact: Henley & Goring Ramblers, Alie Hagedoorn (07894 580413)

Walk 9 : Pack & Prime Lane, Happy Valley, Greys Court, Lambridge Wood

Circular walk past Friar Park (the late George Harrison's home), walk along Pack  & Prime Lane (an ancient way that was used as a drive to cut off the Thames river bend around Reading in the days when there were no locks), Happy Valley, pass Greys Court (bring NT card if available for possible coffee stop), Lambridge Wood and across Badgemore golf course.

  • Monday 31st May @ 10:15
  • Meet at Henley Town Hall, RG9 2AQ
  • Distance 6 Miles / 10 km
  • Contact: Henley & Goring Ramblers, Peter & Jeanne Stone (01491 412330 / 07747 842023)

Walk 10 : Henley Town Wellness Walk

A short gentle circular walk starting in the Square outside the Town Hall. The route travels down through the town centre towards the river and along the river path back up towards the square.

  • Tuesday 1st June @ 12 Midday
  • Meet at Henley Town Hall, RG9 2AQ
  • Distance 1 Mile / 1.6 km (Duration 30 minutes)
  • Contact: Walking for Health, Annalie Thomasson (01235 422226)
  • Sorry no children or dogs on this walk.

Walk 11 : 'To A Skylark'

The arable fields of the Chilterns are home to the ‘the morning lark’ - ‘the herald of the morn’! Join us for this early morning walk to discover the joyous song of the skylark, and more... An easy 1.5 hrs walk on well defined paths and tracks (can be muddy after rain). No stiles.

  • Wednesday 2nd June @ 7:30am
  • Meet at Binfield Heath Playground, Arch Hill, RG9 4DU
  • Distance 3.5 Miles / 5.6 km
  • Adults £5, Under 18 £3 (must be accompanied by adult)
  • Contact: Pipstick Walks. Philippa Sanders, 07710 453087, pipstickswalks@gmail.com
  • See www.pipstickswalks.co.uk for details
  • Sorry no dogs on this walk please.

Getting to the Festival

Public transport

Henley has a regular train service from Twyford, linking with services to London Paddington and Reading. Henley Train Station is half a mile from the town centre. Buses link Henley with Reading, High Wycombe and Oxford.

The bus to Oxford stops at Nettlebed and the High Wycombe service goes within a mile of Hambleden Village; there is no public transport to Maidensgrove.

Car parking is available in Henley

  • Station Car Park, Station Road
  • Rugby Club Car Park, Marlow Road
  • Town Centre Car Parks in Greys Road and Kings Road (Max 3 hours except on Sundays)
  • River & Rowing Museum (charges apply)

In Hambledon

  • Car park adjacent to Stag & Huntsman pub (charges apply)

In Maidensgrove

  • Park (free) on common

In Nettlebed

  • Free parking on street near The Kiln
  • White Hart if visiting the pub

Additional Info

Unless mentioned, all walks require pre-registration via www.visitchilterns.co.uk/walkingfest

Children are welcome on all walks (unless otherwise stated) but must be accompanied by an adult, and the walking distance must be considered. Please ensure that you arrive in good time for the walks. Dogs are welcome on all walks unless otherwise stated.

General contact for the festival: alie.hagedoorn@gmail.com, 07894 580413

COVID19: Please ensure you observe all Covid 19 regulations and advice during your walk.

Thank you to www.visitsoutheastengland.com.

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