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running around the SWs

3 January 2012 1,894 views One Comment


Over the last few months I’ve been doing a bit of running around the SW postcodes and it’s been fun. Actually at times it’s been knee-bashing (compared to usual off-roading), dark, rainy n grimy, and sometimes just way too my-gear-is-better-than-yours (yes, worse than Australia) BUT on the whole, good’n’groovy.

Clapham Common

The first time I came here was for a Spice Girls concert circa 1996. I imagine I was wearing Lycra then too. Couldn’t have run for a ’99 then so some things have changed…
Clapham Common is cool, I like it. It’s a patchwork divided by roads, like Richmond Park, but I prefer it to Richmond, I find it more interesting. The pond at Clapham High Street end is really pleasant, the more wooded stretches on the North side are nice, and the restricted turf – if you don’t mind climbing the pointy fences – is delightful. I feel very lucky to have this on the doorstep.

Wandsworth Common

A slightly longer skip’n’jump from home but still worth it, Wandsworth Common is a couple of big chunks seperated by the railway track & station, and a large part dedicated to the cricket field. The pond in Wandwsorth Common is lovely, absolutely lovely. Again, I hurdle the fences to get in to the good stuff, and I highly recommend it. Just get in there, the running is awesome.

Battersea Park

Beautiful Battersea Park.
Ran here the other morning when there was still frost on the ground and the stars were still winking in the dawn sky, it was glorious, and fkn freezing!
This Park was the setting for my first ever 5K with the girls for the Tesco Pink Breast Cancer Fun Run (or something like that) circa 2004. Now that was a fun run, I don’t think I stopped talking! But I like the Park now because it requires a stretch along the river which means a nod at some old haunts and a glance to, or a traverse across, some of London’s best bridges.

Wimbledon Common

Came through here on Tres a few months back and haven’t yet been through on foot. It was more wild than the other parks from what I recall. Am planning to run here before the end of the week though, so wait for an update.

Riverside South-side

Wandsworth Bridge to the Imperial Wharf bridge (don’t know its name) is all residential/ commercial. There’s more here since I was last pacing this route on a daily basis – 2007 or thereabouts – but still not a Starbucks in sight! Ha.
Imperial Wharf to Battersea Bridge to Albert Bridge is awesome. There’s always so many people here, it feels like a proper community, and I love that there’s a church and houseboats on the riverbank.
Then it’s through Battersea Park to Chelsea Bridge, and you have to pass the Park pagoda. What IS that doing there..?

Riverside North-side

Every step Chelsea Bridge back to Wandsworth Bridge brings back memories from the Fulham Years. Good times my friends :) I was accesorised with Mulberry, not shock absorption then, ha ha.
Chelsea Embankment is fairly straight forwards but as you get to the river side of World’s End there’s more character. Between here and Wandsworth there’s been a fair amount of development, the apartments look beautiful and I always have a soft spot for Chelsea Harbour.
Actually coming past these parts is a role-call of some of my favourite pubs, very fun.


more Riverside South-side & Wandsworth Common

I thought I was gonna head to Wimbledon Common this week but a change of footwear took me out along the pavements. I went West along the area of the Thameside that’s named after various commodities/ imports: ‘Cotton Row’, ‘Calico House’, ‘Spice Row’. There’s been quite a bit of development but it still seemed a bit quiet. I can, however, highly recommend the Verta Hotel, it’s boutique beautiful, and they have so few clients that they don’t mind grufty runners popping in to use the facilities
Across Wandsworth Bridge and a longing glance at The Ship. Then it was past the waste & recycling centres and some more high rise construction, neither of which I advise when it’s the third most windy day of the decade (or something). I popped out at Prospect Quay where Ghillies used to be :) and then straight through Wandsworth Common which was a mess of twigs, branches & debris and on to the pretty Putney waterfront.


took this one morning when I was out for a walk…

… but normally I don’t get photos because I’m running so these are borrowed from Flickr, credits below

Albert Bridge from Battersea
the Albert Bridge from Battersea Park, thank you John A King

The Peace Pagoda, Battersea Park, London.
pagoda, thank you sisaphus

Wandsworth Common - March 2009
a really charming shot of Wandsworth Common, thank you Dominici77

Chelsea Bridge
the lovely Chelsea Bridge, thank you lesinlondon


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One Comment »

  • lucyjjames » Blog Archive » more barefoot running said:

    […] I’ve not learned moderation since so it was straight out for 75 minutes of concrete bouncing along the river. But that means I can tell you more about the […]

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