Today was sunny enough for me to want to walk the Thames Path at Greenwich.
Lunch was at Goddard’s pie and mash shop in the former Cricketers pub at the back of Greenwich Market.
For years I used to enjoy lunch at Ye Olde Pie House in Greenwich near today’s DLR station. It was not as old as many people thought since pies had only been available there since 1952. It was an off-shoot of Goddard’s pie and mash shop in Deptford.
In 2006 the Greenwich pie shop suddenly closed although it had been made a listed building by pie and mash fan Tony Banks MP. It is now a Gourmet Burger Kitchen.
Last year came the good news that Goddard’s was reopening in Greenwich. Today’s long planned visit came a year and one day after the opening in April last year. It was good to enjoy the familiar taste and find that cherry pies are still available for pudding.
The business started in 1890 and is now in the hands of the fifth generation.
Upstairs there a long tables and old church pews for seats.
Today pie and mash is £3.70. It’s a good reliable stop for lunch two hours from the Thames path start.
The towpath has been flooded today by the extra high tides.
The Mail has pictures.
Running coach Simon Barnes has completed the Thames Path in 57 hours and 10 minutes.
He walked upstream without stopping for sleep a year ago this month when the weather was better.
A short report appears in the latest Strider, the Long Distance Walkers Association magazine. He might have been even quicker had he not had “a few diversions and navigational errors”.
Simon says that it is the toughest venture he has ever undertaken.
An updated edition of Cicerone’s Thames Path is out now.
This just issued guide is the most up to date available. Included are the many changes in London as well as the recovered waterside route at Shiplake.
Copies are available from Cicerone.
The arrival of better weather has allowed work to start on repairing and painting Bourne End Bridge.
The iron and steel railway crossing, which carries the Maidenhead-Marlow branch line, was built in 1895 to succeed a wooden one.
The work will take all summer but walkers will still be able to use the footbridge which was attached twenty years ago.
Some important points are made about the state of the Thames Path by John Orchard of Oxfordshire Ramblers.
Writing in the latest South East Walker, he says that the entire Thames was recently under a flood warning. “Vast swathes of land under water” for weeks has been the situation especially in the Abingdon area.
An interesting point made by John is that paths will take a long time to recover and it may be some time before we can walk the paths without being caked in mud.
But as I write it is still February.
Last week rubbish was dumped in Waterhay car park between Cricklade and Ashton Keynes. The gate was also damaged.
It’s already reopened thanks to a Cotswold Water Park team working with local farmers and the Freeth family.
It appears that the path in front of Lovell’s Wharf is now open.
This is almost certainly a temporary measure since the section to the north may be closed when more flats are built. But for now you don’t have go inland.
More updates will be posted here.
Meanwhile here is the latest report.
The helicopter crash at Vauxhall has obviously closed the Thames Path.
An inland diversion is far to long.
Upstream walkers arriving at Vauxhall Bridge should go under the bridge. Once up the slope at St George’s Wharf bear sharp right to go up another slope to the bridge.
Walk across Vauxhall Bridge.
On reaching the north side at Pimlico turn left down steps to stay with the river. It will be necessary to walk round a house but there is a path as far as St George’s Gardens.
After that the road is by the river to the next bridge.
Cross Chelsea Bridge to return to the south side and at once go right into Battersea Park.
As HMV faces closure give a thought to the dog Nipper.
Where is he?
He was buried in Kingston-upon-Thames in a spot now covered by Lloyds Bank.
The bank has a plaque and he is remembered by Nipper Alley opposite Wilkinson’s.
HMV is the modern name for His Master’s Voice which was inspired by a painting by Francis Barraud of Nipper listening to a gramophone.
The bank and alley are both in the main street leading from Kingston Bridge.