Saturday 16th July. Shawford circular.

It’s more than 3 years since Roy & Jane moved away from London, and a walk in area of their new home near Winchester has become an annual event. It was a lovely summer’s day as we got off the train at Shawford to find Roy waiting for us. Our journey had been uneventful although the train had initially busy with people going to the Farnborough air show. Crossing the river Itchen, we made our way through the attractive village of Twyford. Passing well tended allotments and preparations for the afternoon cricket match we continued up and along the downs, through fields and woods with views across the surrounding farmland. Dropping down to Colden Common, we had our sandwiches in the very pleasant surroundings of Roy and Jane’s garden, with tea and homemade cakes kindly provided by our hosts. Our afternoon route took us down to the Itchen and along the Itchen navigation. Now disused, as far as boats are concerned, this was an important waterway in the 18th century for the transporting on coal and agricultural goods between Winchester and Southampton. Careful planning meant that we had a 40 minute wait for our train, which passed very agreeably in the garden of the pub just by the station. Our train was delayed by a few minutes but all was fine till we reached Farnborough and what seemed like the entirety of the airshow spectators piled on for a rather steamy journey back to London.

A lovely day out – many thanks to Roy and Jane for their hospitality.