Friday, 19 August 2016


Along with what appears to be every other blogger in the area, I received an email from someone called Uy Hoang asking me to publicise his new Facebook page dedicated to a local feature called The Ridgeway. I'm always happy to support anyone who is as passionate about something as Uy obviously is, so, grabbing my trusty camera, I set of to take some pictures to accompany this article.

For anyone who doesn't know, the Ridgeway we are talking about is not the National Trail between Avebury, Wiltshire and Ivinghoe in Bucks. This Ridgeway is the footpath running along the top of the embankment covering the sewer built by Joseph Bazalgette which ends at the Crossness Pumping Station on the Erith marshes.

I was aware of it and even walked along it a couple of times a few years ago. Then it was something of a challenge as it was mostly overgrown; now it seems to have had something of a facelift. Greenwich Council have made a number of improvements to their side of the path and Bexley are promising to so something similar having been promised a large cash donation from Thames Water and Peabody.

The Ridgeway Path itself actually begins on the Thames Path and is entered through a gate between the Pumping Station and the old golf course. For a long time this was overgrown and virtually impassable but some improvement work has been done lately by Tilfen who own the land.

Entrance to the Ridgeway Path. The Crossness Pumping Station is on the left with the golf course on the right.

The narrow path down to the golf course. Up to a few months ago, you would be lucky to get through here as it was completely overgrown.

Further along the path.

Don't play in the water, Blue-Green Algae is highly toxic. Dogs should not be allowed into the water as it can make them very ill or even kill them. This is not just the case on the Ridgeway Path, there are reports of dogs becoming ill after going into the water on the Crossness Nature reserve.

The path finally opens up into the old abandoned golf course.

Looking back North across the golf course. There are provisional plans from Peabody to convert this area into a sports and leisure centre. If this is the case, they need to crack on soon. This is ideal nesting ground for Skylarks (I'm surprised they are not there already), if they do start nesting, Peabody will have a hard time getting permission to develop the site.

Once you are past the golf course, you are approaching the actual Ridgeway itself by passing under the Spine Road flyover.

Another entrance to the Ridgeway is via Crossway Park. This area is not at all inviting; strewn with uncollected litter, covered in graffiti and badly vandalised.

Once you are through the gate, or if you are coming from the golf course, this is not a pleasant place to be. Dark, dingy, covered in fly tipped litter and smelling of wee. An ideal place for some of that redevelopment money to be spent.

Fortunately, once through, you are finally walking up the ramp onto the path.

At the top you have the option of turning left or right. I wouldn't bother with the left hand option as this is what you will meet after about 50 yards. Okay for Limbo dancers I suppose. You could slide down the side of the embankment and up the other side if you feel so inclined but I wouldn't bother. The ridge only goes on for a few hundred yards before stopping at the gates of Crossness Sewage Treatment Works.

View looking West along the Ridgeway and down towards the Southmere Park entrance.

Entrance to the Ridgeway from the Northern end of Southmere Park in Belvedere Road. I'm not sure you would be able to get a wheelchair through that gate in case you were thinking of trying.

West along the Ridgeway Path.

A glimpse of Southmere Lake and beyond through the trees.

Some construction work going on.

Approaching the footbridge over the Spine Road. As we get nearer to areas used more by the public, it gets dirtier and more vandalised. Features here include discarded fast food containers and a soiled nappy.

Looking back East.

There is more room here than first appears. Even a tall person should be able to pass through without ducking.

Leaf sculpture.

Facing the Greenwich side of the path at the Southern end of the footbridge.

I'm not sure you would get a wheelchair through here either. People were struggling with their bikes and it would certainly stop anyone with a double buggy.

Once you are on the Greenwich side of the path, you can see where the improvements have been made. The path itself is much wider and has been given a hard surface. This is the bit which runs alongside Sewell Road in Abbey Wood.

Ramp down to Sewell Road on the left and Nathan Way on the right.

Looking East. The Plumstead transmitter on the right.

Passing under White Hart Avenue.

At this point, you can turn sharp left and use what looks like a little used path out to White Hart Avenue.

Entrance to the Ridgeway via White Hart Avenue. This entrance isn't signposted, you have to guess.

Back on the main path and heading towards Plumstead.

View out across Plumstead towards Shooters Hill.

Crossrail construction outside Plumstead railway Station.

Approaching the end of the path by the one way system at Plumstead Bus garage. As before, as we get closer to "civilisation" the vandalism gets worse.

Looking back East where the path runs down to the end of Nathan Way.

Nathan Way entrance to the Ridgeway. It is signposted but someone planted a tree in front of the sign.

There is some discussion about extending the footpath into Woolwich but I'm not sure how you would cross the main road. We shall see.


Pat Hickey, President of the Olympic Council of Ireland, has been arrested in Brazil where it is alleged that he was involved in a scheme to sell tickets for higher than their face value.


This is the scene in the main stadium during the opening ceremony. Given that the Olympic organisers don't seem to be able to even give them away, you wonder why he would ever think he could sell them at higher than their face value.

I wonder if this is some sort of Irish joke, if it isn't, then it ought to be. "Have you heard the one about the Irishman and the Olympic tickets?"


What would I do without my old mate Joshua Bonehill-Paine? This blog wouldn't have anything like as many posts for a start. He does for me what Bexley Council does for Malcolm Knight although to be fair, not so often; but when he does, it's usually a corker.

The hero of the British people and "Rising star of the Right" is up before the beak again, this time charged with posting abusive articles about Liverpool Wavertree MP Luciana Berger

It's claimed that he used his news blog "The Daily Bale" to publish five racially aggravated articles about the MP between October 2014 and January 2015. He has pleaded not guilty to all the charges. 

The trial doesn't start until 5th December so we will have to wait till then to find out if he is either denying that he wrote the articles attributed to him or whether articles such as the one entitled "The Legacy of Operation Filthy Jew Bitch" don't constitute racial harassment. I can't wait.