New River - Broxbourne to Turkey Brook

30 September 2007

After yesterday's surprisingly tiring visit to the Gransden Show, a shortish walk was in order, and Henry and Stephen continued on from their walk at the end of August with another walk south along the New River.

We parked the car at Turkey Street station and took the train to Broxbourne station, from where it is a short walk to Broxbourne church

After we make our way out of Broxbourne, we pass along the back of Wormley...

...and Turnford

After passing around the back of the Brookfield shopping centre, we walked secretively through Cheshunt - indeed, secretive is very much the way in which this route makes progress. We emerge briefly into open country around Bury Green

Though the twin monstrosities of the new Travelodge and the new News International printing works loom over what was a tranquil view last time we were along this way. Waltham Cross and Waltham Abbey lie in between, but being in the slight dip of the Lee Valley, did little to interrupt the view towards Epping Forest, but that view has been destroyed.

Henry as the New River briefly widens

The New River aqueduct over the M25 gives a very broad promenade for the walker

Looking down on the M25 towards Holmesdale Tunnel. The junction has fully reopened this month after we had been without proper access to the motorway for the last 18 months, but at least it now has the full 6 lanes with which it should have been built 20 years ago.

Now into Enfield, we reach Turkey Street, but from here we are going to continue slightly further south to reach the car by a more interesting route.

We reach the point where the course of the New River was straightened in the 1850s, the straight section cutting off a huge loop around Forty Hall. The new aqueduct and embankment over Turkey Brook are protected from detritus by an iron grille, which in turn is cleared of debris by this ingenious automated system, where the hanging tined bucket is dipped into the River, then lifted up against the grille, lifting out any debris, before moving to the bank...

...where it opens up and deposits the debris on the ground ready for collection.

Looking to the remarkably heavily fortified section of the New River - despite being underground in the embankment, this section is protected by two rows of three-metre high spiked fences, one topped with razor wire, and equipped with lighting. Considering I've walked more than 20 kilometres along the New River from Hertford where there was free access, this seems at first sight to be very odd, but I think it must be connected with the fact that water from the New River is extracted around here and taken to the Lee Valley reservoirs.

From the path, the covered aqueduct of the New River can just be seen through the trees, running above Turkey Brook.

Here we meet our old friend, the London Loop, heading east towards Enfield Lock.

Henry on the London Loop, which we follow for about 800 metres back to the car.

Total 11.2km (including station links) - 10.4 km on the New River Path; effectively flat, in 2 hours 51 mins (including 50 mins stopped).

The New River Path continues towards Palmers Green...


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Unless otherwise stated, all images copyright (c) Stephen and Lucy Dawson