Round Trip Ride – Putney Heath 走一轉系列 – Putney Heath

For the past cycling trips, I used to take those relatively flat roads and footpaths. In this round of my Round Trip Ride, I would include some bike climbs in my visit to another adjacent district, the Borough of Wandsworth and with Putney Heath as my destination. The return trip would go through Richmond Park and back to the Kingston twon centre. The total distance was estimated to be around 29 Km.

過往的單車路線大多是以較平坦的車路或小徑為主,今次會嘗試加多一點爬坡路段。行程以 Borough of WandsworthPutney Heath 為目的地,回程會穿越 Richmond Park 返回 Kingston 市中心,行程預計約 29 公里。

Kingston Upon Thames – Adjacent Local Government Districts

Borough of Wandsworth is located in the north eastern side of Kingston. Whereas Borough of Richmond upon Thames where Richmond Park is located, is in the northern side of Kingston, adjacent to Borough of Wandsworth.

Today’s destination, Putney Heath is located inside Wimbledon and Putney Commons. Total size of the Commons is ​​around 460 hectares, which is a slightly bigger than Bushy Park. It is composed of four parts: Wimbledon Common, Putney Heath, Putney Lower Common and Richardson Evans Memorial Playing fields. Most of the areas are key nature conservation areas with a lot of plants, and are habitats for birds and animals. This trip would only go through Wimbledon Common to Putney Heath.

The other focus of the trip would be Richmond Park. With an area of ​​about 955 hectares, it is the largest royal park in London and the second largest park in London. In addition to being an internationally renowned wild nature conservation area, it also has a number of architectural or historic buildings. The park spans across multiple areas and could be accessed via several gates that are connected by main roads and trails. Due to the changing terrain and the low traffic volume, it is considered as a gem for the cyclists.

The major parts of the route is still based on roads and with the initial part resembled my previous ride to Epsom Common. Upon reaching Elm Road, turned east and towarded the climbing section of Copse Hill.

Same as before, the ride started from Brook Street and travel along the following major Point of Interests:

  • Bonner Hill Road / Elm Road
  • New Malden Golf Club
  • Copse Hill
  • West Side Common / Wimbledon Common
  • Putney Heath
  • Roehampton Lane / Roehampton Gate, Richmond Park
  • Ham Gate, Richmomnd Park
  • Latchmere Road
  • Skerne Walk / Skerne Road

Borough of Wandsworth 在 Kingston 的東北方,而 Richmond Park 所在的 Borough of Richmond upon Thames 則在 Kingston 北邊部,舆 Borough of Wandsworth 接壤。

今天的目的地 Putney Heath 位於 Wimbledon and Putney Commons 內。Wimbledon and Putney Commoms 佔地約 460 公頃,比 Bushy Park 還要大一點點,主要由 Wimbledon Common、Putney Heath、Putney Lower CommonRichardson Evans Memorial Playing fields 四部份所組成。Commons 內大部份都是重點自然保育區,滿佈各式植物,是雀鳥、動物的棲息地。此行路線只會穿越 Wimbledon Common 到 Putney Heath,其他兩部份或留待下次才到訪。

行程的另一主角則是 Richmond Park,面積約 955 公頃,是倫敦最大的皇室公園,亦是倫敦第二大公園。除了是國際知名的野生自然保育區外,更擁有多座具建築或歷史性的建築物。横跨多個區域的公園可經多個閘口進入,內裡由多條主要車路及小徑連接所連接。由于車輛流量低,地形變化亦不箅少,是一個單車騎行聖地。

這次路線仍以馬路為主,去程早段與先前到 Epsom Common 大致上一樣,只是到了 Elm Road 後便改向東走往今天的爬坡路段 Copse Hill

行程一如以往,從 Brook Street 出發,沿途經過以下幾個主要地點:

  • Bonner Hill Road / Elm Road
  • New Malden Golf Club
  • Copse Hill
  • West Side Common / Wimbledon Common
  • Putney Heath
  • Roehampton Lane / Roehampton Gate, Richmond Park
  • Ham Gate, Richmomnd Park
  • Latchmere Road
  • Skerne Walk / Skerne Road

At Elm Road, turned left to Cambridge Avenue and passed through the New Malden Golf Club via the public footpath at the end of Cambridege Avenue. To cross the extremely busy A3, pedalled through the pedestrian tunnel and came out from the West Coombe Avenue. Copse Hill would appear right after the roundabout.

在 Elm Road 轉左到 Cambridge Avenue,走到盡頭可經公眾步道穿越 New Malden Golf Club,之後利用行人隧道横過 A3。沿 West Coombe Avenue 走一小段路至回旋處便到達 Copse Hill。

Most of the routes I had riden so far in UK were quite flat. Despite there was a climb along the 1.5 Km Copse Hill, it was relatively easy as the steepest portion was just 1 Km in length and with average gradient of 3.6 %. Nevertheless, extra care should still be made as this was also one of the main routes in this area with quite a lot of cars moving along.

在英國踩過的數條路線主要都是平路,今次的爬坡路段 Copse Hill 亦不算太長,約 1.5 公里,而較斜的一段只有一公里,平均坡度約 3.6 度,難度真的不高,但因為這是區內一條主要車路之一,爬行時還是要提高警覺,小心留意來往車輛。

End of the Copse Hill climb

After the climb, continued the trip along Woodhayes Road to the entrance at West Side Common. On the other side of the road is the 190+ old famous Public School, Kings College School (KCS). Established in 1829 and moved to the current location at Wimbledon in 1897. Despite ranking of KCS dropped in the past few years, there are still considerable number of graduates accepted by Oxford or Cambridge each year.

爬完坡繼續沿 Woodhayes Road 走到 West Side Common 的入口, 路的另一邊就是有差不多二佰年歷史的著名公學 Kings College School (KCS),1829 年成立,1897 年搬到 Wimbledon 現址。雖然 KCS 在英國排名已不復當年,但每年仍有一定數量的畢業生獲 OxfordCambridge 錄取。

King’s College School

At the end of West Side Common is the entrance to the Wimbledon and Putney Commons.

在 West Side Common 盡頭便正式進入 Wimbledon and Putney Commons。

Wimbledon & Putney Commons is so large that strolling along the entire area probably took few hours. Based on my “Just pay a visit” mindset, I definitely would take a shortcut by just visiting those eye-catching points of interest. Starting from the Green Ride, I moved along the Inner Windmill Road and the Golf Course of the Wimbledon Commons was located on my left. Within a short distance was The Windmill that was built in 1817 adopting a hollow structure commonly found in Holland. Operating for half of a century, the internal machinery of the windmill were removed and the structure was redeployed for residential purpose.

In recent years, The Windmill had been switched into a museum opened to public and with the addition of The Windmill Tearooms, serving foods and drinks. As it was still too early for lunch, I just stopped for a brief rest and continued with the trip.

Wimbledon & Putney Commons 佔地這麽廣,要走遍整個地方怕且也要數小時,以我「到此一遊」的慣例,當然會走 Shortcut。早段沿 Green Ride 一路走至 Inner Windmill Road 交界,左手邊便是 Wimbledon Common 的高爾夫球場,再向前走不多遠便到達另一景點 The Windmill。建於 1817 年,以荷蘭風車結構作設計藍本,運作了半個世紀後,這個 Windmill 最終被關閉及改作住宅用途。

現時 The Windmill 已改作博物館,並加入了茶館 The Windmill Tearooms。由于時間尚早,我只在 Tearooms 傍繞個圈,稍作停留便繼續行程。

Next came the Putney Heath. In UK, Health refers to infertile and uncultivated land. With the acidity type of soil, what can be found were just those small to medium shrubs. Without much attraction, I just skipped the place and move along to Tibbet Corner Roundabout. Using the pedestrian tunnel / cycleway, I crossed the A3 to reach the traditional English Pub, The Telegraph, on the other side of Putney Heath.

The Telegraph sits on the original location of The Admiralty Telegraph, a shutter station established in 1976. With the introduction of telegraph system, the shutter station was shut down in 1848. The original pub was closed in 1 Jan 2019 due to failure in new rental agreement but was re-opened in mid 2020 by the pub-restaurant group Brunning and Price.

離開 The Windmill 後便是 Putney Heath。在英國,Heath 所指的是不太適合樹木生長的荒地,由于大部份是酸性土壤,一般只有較小的灌木林。在沒有太大的吸引力下,我當然很亦沒有停下來,繼續往 Tibbets Corner Roundabout 走,利用單車隧道横過 A3 到 Putney Heath 的另一景點,傳統英式酒吧,The Telegraph

The Telegraph 原址為 The Admiralty Telegraph,一個建於 1796 年的訊號站,隨着電報的到來,這個訊號站亦於 1848 年正式結束。 而原來的 The Telegraph 亦由于租約問題在 2019 年 1 月 1 日結業,最終由酒吧集團 Brunning and Price 在 2020 年中接手。

Cycleway at Tibbets Corner Roundabout

To avoid Drunk Driving (Yes, applies to cyclists too!), I leave it to my next visit with my family.

The trip continued from Telegraph Road to Roehampton Lane, then along Danebury Avenue to Richmond Park.

為免醉駕 (踩單車和駕車都一樣!),還是留待下次和家人到來才試吧!

沿著 Telegraph Road 走到 Roehampton Lane,再轉至 Danebury Avenue 往 Richmond Park 進發。

By the time I got into Richmond Park from the Roehampton Gate, I was astonished by the endless view of the park. No wonder it is the second largest park in London.

Along Sawyer’s Hill, I turned left at the roundabout towards White Lodge on the top of the slope.

The White Lodge is a Grade I listed Georgian house. It was completed in 1730 and used as a hunting lodge for King George II. The lodge was originally named Stone Lodge or New Lodge, and later known as White Lodge. In 1955, it was handed over to The Sadler’s Wells Ballet School as a permanent school site. A year later, it was officially awarded the Royal title, and it became the Royal Ballet School today.

Roehampton Gate 進入 Richmond Park,眼前一望無際的景緻,的確令人有點震撼,不愧是倫敦第二大公園。

沿著 Sawyer’s Hill 往前,在回旋處轉左向山坡上的 White Lodge 走。

White Lodge 是個一級歴史保護建築物,1730 年落成並用作 King George II 狩獵時居所,最初命名為 Stone LodgeNew Lodge,後期又被稱作 White Lodge。1955 年交給 The Sadler’s Wells Ballet School 作為永久校址,一年後更正式授予 Royal 稱號,變作今天的 Royal Ballet School

Visitors will have an execellent view right from the main entrance of the White Lodge. There is also footpath leading to the Richmond Gate at the western side of the park. The section of the cycleway on the left is also a great place for viewing the sunset. And no wonder why there were so many casual riders as well as pro-riders passing by on that day.

White Lodge 正門前景色絶佳,有步行小徑一路通往西邊的 Richmond Gate;而沿左邊向前走的一段路亦是欣賞日落的好地方,難怪當天在門前不斷有單車客經過,悠閒的、專業裝備的也有。

I had my lunch at the Pen Ponds Cafe next to the Pen Ponds. Did this look familar to you?

Yes, just like the Busky Park Coffee Kiosk (Diana Car Park)! Operated by the same company Colicci and serving exactly the same menu. Nevertheless, their Hot-dog and Bacon Bap were really great and tasty!

午餐就在 Pen Ponds 傍的 Pen Ponds Cafe 吃,是否有點似曾相悉的感覺?

沒錯,就是和 Bushy Park Coffee Kiosk (Diana Car Park) 差不多!同一公司 Colicci 承辦,餐牌亦完全一樣。話雖如此,她們的熱狗和煙肉飽質量頗佳,味道一流!

With a short rest, I resumed my ride along Quiteway 21 towards Ham Gate and left Richmond Park.

稍作休息後便沿 Quiteway 21Ham Gate 離開 Richmond Park。

Pedalled along Quiteway 21 with Pond Plantation on the right & Isabella Plantation on the left
Ham Gate, Richmon Park

There were a number of different routes from Ham Gate back to the Kingston town centre. Personally, I preferred to ride along rsidential areas with relatively less cars. I finally chosed to move along Church Lane to Latchmere Road and subsequently taking Bank Lane along the river side instead of the busy Richmond Road.

With that route, you would pedal along Skerne Walk, a hot spot for cyclists. With elegant houses on the sides, this is a wonderful place for relaxing walk as well as walk dogs.

Next came the Skerne Road and the footpath under the Kingston Railway Bridge, that lead to the Kingston town centre.

返回 Kingston 市中心的路線有多個選擇,我比較喜歡民居小路,車輛不會太多,從 Church Lane 走至 Latchmere Road,取河邊的 Bank Lane 而捨棄 Richmond Road

這走法會經過單車客的熱點 Skerne Walk,兩傍是優雅的民居,亦是散步和放狗的好地方。

接著繼續向前往 Skerne Road,再經 Kingston 站火車橋底返回市中心。

To be honest, I found the footpath under the Kingston Railway Bridge very dirty and full of droppings from Pigeons. I would rather take a much longer alternative. Turned right to Henry Macaulay Avenue towards Canbury Gardens after leaving Skerne Walk. And back to Kingston town centre along the Thames Riverside.

而我覺得火車橋底頗骯髒,亦有很多白鴿糞便,反喜歡走遠一點。在離開 Skerne Walk 後便轉右至 Henry Macaulay AvenueCanbury Gardens ,沿 Thames Riverside 返回市中心。

Alternatively, use the footpath to Canbury Gardens via the Henry Macaulay Avenue

By exploring the Strava website for rides made within the Richmond Park, I observed the longest rides previously riden was around 29 Km and with peak speed of 41 Km/h (Noted that the top speed allowed in the park is 20 Km/h and cyclist does not have any privilege!). What I had today was just 5 Km and there were still a lot of places that I had not visited.

Frankly speaking, despite Richmond Park is extremely large, I did not have any fun riding within it. However, from a practical point of view, using the roads and cycleways as shortcuts to other connecting areas would be great.

My last cycling post was like a gourmet recommendation. Interestingly, this post turns out to be a tour to the historical buildings.

Strava 網站上曾見過有人在公園走內走出約 29 公里的挑戰路線,最高速度竟達 41 Km/h (要留意,公園內車速上限只是 20 Km/h,單車並沒有特權)。而今天我只走了約 5 公里,尚有很多地方沒有去過。

坦白講,Richmond Park 雖然大,但我覺得在內面騎單車有點悶,沒有太多樂趣。不過因公園横跨多個地區,利用裡面的車路及 Cycleway 作為連接其他地區的㨗徑反而更實際。


Round trip to Putney Heath
Round trip to Putney Heath

If you are interested in my rides in UK, click here for more details.


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