Call to Action: Walking on Abandoned Travel Routes

21 November 2011

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View along Deptford Creek to the Albany TheatreView along Deptford Creek to the Albany Theatre

After a week of uncovering quirky transport collections and museums around the country, it’s high time that we go out into the great outdoors to discover the old travel routes that have shaped the UK’s landscape. From historical Roman roads to disused railway lines, we’ll be looking at the old travel routes that have got us from A to B over the millennia. And what better way to follow these disused thoroughfares than by taking a green approach to transport: on foot or by bicycle.

This is precisely what I did on a crisp autumn morning, as I embarked on a fascinating walking tour of Deptford in south London. The area has long been renowned for its ships, seamen and watering holes, but it has also been the starting point for many important journeys throughout history. Rumoured to be part of ancient Celtic routes and the pilgrim’s long walk to Canterbury, and famous as a centre for trade, Deptford is a perfect place to discover abandoned travel routes.

One such disused thoroughfare that we encountered on the walk was the Deptford Creek – once an important trade route for laden barges, it is now best appreciated as a place for discovering interesting creek-dwelling species, or for admiring surprisingly picturesque industrial relics. Whilst I walked alongside the creek from the safety of a bridge, The Creekside Discovery Centre organises low-tide walks along this old travel route – definitely one to check out if you enjoy wildlife, walking and wellies!


Do you have a favourite walk or cycling route that follows an abandoned railway, road, or waterway? If so, tell us about it here, on Facebook or Twitter (@DiscoverDP).

Posted by Team DP.

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