Six Polyramblers were about to start the walk in Greenwich when we got a message from Hilary to say that she and Gini were arriving by boat. So we went to wait for them at Greenwich Pier. Now eight Polyramblers, we went up towards Greenwich Observatory through the park and left it at Macartney House, which used to be the home of General James Wolfe. Walking on a track lined with pretty houses, we reached a grassy plateau known as The Point with an amazing London panorama. We then descended in the valley of the Ravensbourne river which we met in Brookmill Park and Brookmill Nature Reserve. We continued to Hilly Fields where we had lunch in the cafe. We passed a nicely decorated trig point to reach Vicars Hill. We made a very short detour to see the 15th century Parish Church of St Mary’s in Lewisham with an unusual Grecian porch, probably from the 18th century, and its therapeutic garden from the 21st century.

We followed the Ravensbourne river again through Ladywell Park then left it to go up Ladywell Fields. We then entered Blythe Hill Fields where we had a short water stop and admired the view of London. We made our way to One Tree Hill where an oak was planted in 1905 to mark the outcome of the ‘Battle of One Tree Hill’ when this land was saved for the public. It is said that Elizabeth I rested under an oak in the same spot in 1662. After descending from One Tree Hill – which has more then one tree – we crossed into Brenchley Gardens and then entered Horniman Garden. We made a detour to see the rabbits and sheep and, while three of us stopped at the Horniman Museum Cafe, the rest of the group made their way to Forest Hill station where the walk finished.

It’s worth noting that, for centuries, people had to struggle and sometimes fight to preserve all the green spaces we went through today.