Daniel Greenwood

I am living with the animals

The North Downs


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I am a regular visitor to the North Downs. The North Downs Way is a national trail that runs from Farnham to Dover. I am walking parts of the trail again and again, backwards and sometimes (what feels like) upside down.

For the past four years I have been writing short pieces about walking the downs, photographing its wildlife and trying to learn as much as I can about its geological, cultural and natural history.

We drink up and head to the train station, a horse with hair like Little Richard, tangled by months-old burdock burrs, chews vegetation on the edge of the lane. Up ahead, in perfect entanglement, shrink-wrapped cheese sandwiches dangle from a twig.

View my North Downs diary archive

Selected entries:

From Rochester to Detling, the need for safe passage: Detling, July 2017
The dawn chorus at Gatton Park: Gatton, April 2017
The roar grows ever louder: Cuxton, September 2016
The man from Italy: Coulsdon, June 2016
From here to Canterbury: Coulsdon, May 2015
A neon waltz: Coulsdon, May 2014
Something new: Coulsdon, July 2013
The endless scene: Kent, December 2012




3 Responses to “The North Downs”

  1. David

    Daniel, further ideas , not sure if you have been there yet.
    THreehalfpenny Woods , Shirley way and Riddlesdown Common Kenly.
    the former , I spent many hours there in the Summer Holidays using the natural Springs to sustain me, I think the name is the best name I have heard for a wood.The latter , I lived in Kenly for a while and used to escape here.

    • D. Greenwood

      Thanks David, I have spent time on Riddlesdown as a volunteer some years ago pulling ragwort. I’ve walked on Kenley Common often as part of a set route from Coulsdon to Whyteleafe – I wrote about it here https://danieljamesgreenwood.com/2015/06/06/from-here-to-canterbury/ – but don’t really feel I know it as well as Farthing Downs or Happy Valley. I know the City of London Corp are doing lots of work with the heritage of the airfield, etc.



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