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1 July 2009

Wander Walthamstow Marshes

Walthamstow Marshes, on the borders of Hackney and Waltham Forest in the Lee Valley Park, are designated a Site of Special Scientific Interest, especially important considering the urban location, and is home to species such as the internationally rare Creeping Marshwort. Local bird life includes the reed bunting, reed, sedge and willow warblers, and a variety of wintering birds and finches in autumn.

The Marshes form a natural link between Hackney Marshes to the south and the various reservoirs to the north. To the West, the River Lee carries canal boats to the Springfield Marina and on into London.

In 1909, Alliott Verdon Roe completed the first all–British powered flight here in a Roe I Triplane, which he built in a small workshop in a nearby railway arch. For more on the history of the area, or for information on how to get there, see here or here.

Click here to see the location on a map.

**Edit** A commenter writes to remind us that the Marshes are on National Cycle Route One, and are very easily accessed from Central London by pleasant rides along the canals. Your author wholeheartedly agrees.

**Further edit** London Blogger Diamond Geezer also writes to let us know that this month marks 100 years since Roe's flight and a centenary celebration, featuring a replica plane, is scheduled for Sunday 12th July.

^Picture from Flickr courtesy of Contadini^


  1. Remember, Walthamstow Marshes is on National Cycle Route Number 1. So the bicycle is the best mode of transport for you to get there.

  2. It's 100 years this month since Roe's first flight, and a centenary celebration (with replica plane) is scheduled for Sunday 12th July.

    [further details]

    Well worth a visit to the Marshes, I suspect.