Cross the Thames from elegant Kew to post-industrial Brentford on a guided walking tour of variety and contrast, extraordinary history and sublime scenery. Criss-cross rivers, locks, canals and creeks. Discover where Julius Caesar probably forded the Thames in 54 BC and where a pitched battle was fought during the English Civil War.
Our walk starts at Kew, the retreat of Hanoverian royalty and the world famous botanic gardens. From Queen Anne’s ‘little church’ on Kew Green, we pass imposing Georgian houses and cross Kew Bridge to uncover the unique character of Brentford, a town with a gritty industrial past, now experiencing rapid regeneration and gentrification. We walk past wharfs, docks, locks and historic boatyards and see where the Grand Union Canal enters the Thames.
We make our way to Syon Park, the last great private stately home and park in London, landscaped by Capability Brown, and associated with the confinement of Queen Catherine Howard, the corpse of King Henry VIII and tragedy of the ‘Nine Days Queen’ Lady Jane Grey.
We reach Old Isleworth, with its fine terrace of period houses, pausing for refreshments at the historic London Apprentice pub while admiring the tranquil river view. Continuing past willow-lined islands with working waterfronts, we follow the towpath to Richmond Lock where we re-cross the Thames, then on to visit the Richmond old palace site. We finish at Richmond Riverside, with its cafes, pubs and restaurants.
ItineraryCheck-in 10.55 by the entrance to St Anne’s Church TW9 3AA on Kew Green for 11:00 departure.
There are trains to Kew Bridge station from London Waterloo, and London Underground to Kew Gardens (District Line). Bus routes 65 & 391. Paid parking is available at Kew Gardens.
This adventure is perfect for individuals and small groups, and can be tailored for:
- Hen / Stag parties
- School groups
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