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Richmond Park

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Richmond Park
Author: clairesharpuk, Published: 04 Feb 2013 Walk rating : Rating:star1 Richmond Park Walking Guidestar1 Richmond Park Walking Guidestar1 Richmond Park Walking Guidestar1 Richmond Park Walking Guidestar0 Richmond Park Walking Guide
Surrey, Richmond
Walk Type: Garden or park
Richmond Park
Length: 5 miles,  Difficulty: boot Richmond Park Walking Guide boot Richmond Park Walking Guide
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A 5 mile circular trail on the paths of Richmond Park. Richmond Park is a large bustling park where fallow deer, red deer and a whole host of wildlife share the area with joggers, cyclists and walkers. One of London’s Royal Parks, the park dates back to the early 1600s and is popular with residents and visitors alike.

Most of the walk follows tarmac paths put about a quarter of it follows grass paths which can get muddy in winter and after rain. There are only a few steady climbs and descents. The paths can be quite busy and you are likely to be sharing them with plenty of joggers and cyclists. Dogs are welcome in Richmond Park but remember there are free roaming deer so you need to keep them under close control (you don’t want to create your own YouTube ‘Fenton!’ moment). The deer can become aggressive towards dogs during the breeding season (Sep/Oct) and the birthing season (May to July). There is a park information centre, refreshment kiosk and public toilets alongside the car park at the start. Approximate time 2 hours.

The walk starts from the free car park within Richmond Park at Pembroke Lodge on Queen’s Road. (Note: vehicle access to the park is limited to daylight hours). If you enter the park through the Richmond Gate entrance, turn right at the first roundabout and the car park can be found further along Queen’s Road on the right hand side. Approximate post code TW10 5HX.

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Walk Sections

Start to Ham Gate Crossroads
Start to Ham Gate Crossroads

Start point: 51.4439 lat, -0.2934 long
End point: 51.4332 lat, -0.2873 long

Stand facing the information centre with the car park and road behind you. Turn left to follow the tarmac footpath with the road running over to the left. Pass by the refreshment kiosk on the right and follow the path with the tall metal fence immediately to the right. Keep close to the fence, and as the fence turns right, go right and then left to follow the ridge top path past a number of benches. Enjoy the views over the valley to the right.

Soon you will need to veer left to merge back onto the main gravel path which runs closely alongside Queen’s Road on the left. Continue ahead until you reach a crossroads marked with a four way signpost, with Ham Gate signed to the right and Isabella Plantation signed to the left.

Ham Gate Crossroads to Robin Hood Junction
Ham Gate Crossroads to Robin Hood Junction

Start point: 51.4332 lat, -0.2873 long
End point: 51.4392 lat, -0.2685 long

Turn left here signed towards Isabella Plantation. Follow the tarmac lane and after a little distance the lane narrows – keep ahead here ignoring the right turn to the plantation.

Richmond Park, a National Nature Reserve, is the largest of the London Royal Parks and was created by Charles 1 in 1634. The park is home to more than 600 red and fallow deer and a cull takes place twice a year to control the numbers. An important home to a range of wildlife, if is worth keeping a look out for woodpeckers, skylarks, stag beetles and green parakeets. The parakeets originally escaped from captivity and now populate a large area of south-west London and can be recognised from their distinctive squawks.

Continue for some distance to the end of the lane where it meets a T-junction with a wider vehicle lane. The junction is marked with a signpost marking Barnes and London to the left.

Robin Hood Junction to Sawyer’s Hill
Robin Hood Junction to Sawyer’s Hill

Start point: 51.4392 lat, -0.2685 long
End point: 51.4519 lat, -0.2682 long

Turn left here, signed to Barnes, and pass by another parking area on the left. Immediately after the car park, turn left onto the gravel path. Soon you will see a pair of lakes, one each side of the path, in the distance ahead.

If you look over to the right you will see White Lodge, an impressive mansion, on the hill here. White Lodge was originally built as a hunting lodge for George II and now houses the Royal Ballet Lower School, teaching students aged 11-16.

Follow the path between the two lakes (Pen Ponds). When the lake on the left ends, turn right at the crossroads onto a wide grass path. Follow this path with the lake on the right and an area of trees on the left. Continue straight ahead beyond the trees on the left and follow the path as it now passes through open grassland. Eventually you will meet a T-junction with Sawyer’s Hill (one of the main park roads).

Sawyer’s Hill to End
Sawyer’s Hill to End

Start point: 51.4519 lat, -0.2682 long
End point: 51.4451 lat, -0.2943 long

Cross over the road with care, and then turn left to join the tarmac path running parallel with the road now on your left. Follow this path for some distance and eventually you will reach the Richmond Gate park entrance ahead.

This entrance is easily recognisable thanks to the distinctive red brick mansion which can be seen just beyond the gates. This is the Royal Star and Garter Home, designed by Edwin Cooper and opened in 1924 as an accommodation and nursing facility for injured servicemen. The building was used for this purpose until 2013. During 2013 the remaining residents will be moved out to a modern facility in Surbiton and the Richmond building will be offered for sale.

Pass by the roundabout and then just before the gates, turn left to cross the entrance road and join the tarmac path with the tall metal fence running on the right. Follow the path alongside the fence all the way back to reach the car park where the walk began.

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Text and images for this walk are Copyright © 2013 by the author clairesharpuk and may not be reproduced without permission.


The information in this guide has been provided in good faith and is intended only as a guide, not a statement of fact. You are advised to check the accuracy of the information provided and should not use this guide for navigational directions nor should you rely on the accuracy of the weather forecast. You are advised to take appropriate clothing, footwear, equipment and navigational materials with you according to the current and possible weather and nature of the terrain. Always follow the country code and follow any additional warnings or instructions that may be available. Some walks may be very strenuous and you are advised to seek medical advice if you have any doubts as to your capability to complete the walk.

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