Sunday, 2 April 2017 (Group: Capital Walkers)
Start time 10:45
8 miles / 12.9 km
Travel: Take the 10.04 from Fenchurch Street (Limehouse10.08; Barking 10.19), arrives Benfleet at 11.04
We will go to Old Leigh Town up a steep hill on pavement to the start of the downs. We will traverse gently undulating gravel track with Hadleigh Castle up on the left hand side and walk for about 4 miles into Old Leigh, a picturesque, historical place, with fishing boats, craft shops, pubs, houses, wharfs, marine industries and cockle sheds which stretch along the shoreline. Should you wish to eat your packed lunch there are also benches, though a packed lunch is not necessary due to the wide variety of eateries and fresh fish!
After lunch we head by the sea wall onto a bridge which leads to Two Tree Island. The eastern section of Two Tree is part of Leigh National Nature Reserve, along with the adjoining saltmarsh and a large area of intertidal mudflats. The saltmarsh, along the southern shore of the island, is one of the best surviving in the Thames estuary.
Terrain: Gravel track, pavement, grass
Dropout points: Leigh on Sea