Capital Ring 7 and 8: Richmond to Hanwell


We walked a little more of the Capital Ring, starting from Richmond, and for once with very nice weather for it!


The section officially started from Richmond Bridge; we walked down to the Thames from the station, then along the towpath.

The White Cross pub by the river.
1/500 at f8, 23mm, ISO200 51°27′32″N 0°18′28″W
Roadside garages.
1/500 at f8, 23mm, ISO200 51°27′32″N 0°18′32″W
Pink castle house.
1/1000 at f8, 23mm, ISO200 51°27′35″N 0°18′40″W

A little way along the river, we crossed the impressive footbridge over the weir and tide barrier at Richmond Lock.

View from footbridge to opposite footbridge and downriver.
1/1000 at f8, 23mm, ISO200 51°27′44″N 0°19′1″W
Gates closed.
1/1000 at f8, 23mm, ISO200 51°27′44″N 0°19′1″W
Slipway in last arch.
1/250 at f8, 23mm, ISO200 51°27′42″N 0°19′4″W
Overall view (lock wall in background).
1/500 at f8, 23mm, ISO200 51°27′43″N 0°19′4″W
Houseboats on the Thames.
1/500 at f8, 23mm, ISO200 51°27′53″N 0°19′16″W


Our path left the river to run along roads near the complex that used to be the Nazareth House convent. It’s now being converted into expensive housing.

Gate and pile of gravel.
1/500 at f8, 23mm, ISO200 51°27′53″N 0°19′20″W
River Crane tidal gates.
1/1000 at f2.8, 23mm, ISO200 51°27′55″N 0°19′22″W
Part of the convent buildings.
1/1000 at f8, 23mm, ISO200 51°28′4″N 0°19′27″W

We returned to the river briefly at Lion Wharf, before the path diverted inland again.

Crane left over from the wharving days (there’s now a pub).
1/2000 at f4, 23mm, ISO200 51°28′6″N 0°19′19″W
River and the end of Isleworth Ait. (And a plane and a heron.)
1/500 at f8, 23mm, ISO200 51°28′13″N 0°19′18″W
Footbridge (1).
1/500 at f8, 23mm, ISO200 51°28′13″N 0°19′18″W
Footbridge (2).
1/500 at f8, 23mm, ISO200 51°28′13″N 0°19′17″W

Our path led back to a road, rather than across the inviting footbridge. We passed by Isleworth church (All Saints), then across Syon Park and into Brentford, where we joined the canal for the next section of the walk.


Canalside Brentford has changed a lot since my previous visit in 2008. Enormous blocks of new flats are all over it. And the large warehouse structure over a canal dock is still there, but the roof and half of the walls have been replaced by an open latticework. Not sure if that’s because the previous structure was physically unsafe (as suspected in my comments last time) or just a crime hotspot. The new one is still interesting, but less atmospheric.

Shadows on the remaining walls.
1/320 at f8, 23mm, ISO200 51°29′7″N 0°18′50″W
Passing train, clearly visible through what used to be a wall.
1/1000 at f8, 23mm, ISO200 51°29′7″N 0°18′50″W
Corner of dock, with stripey shadows.
1/1000 at f8, 23mm, ISO200 51°29′8″N 0°18′52″W
Nearby railway bridge.
1/1000 at f8, 23mm, ISO200 51°29′9″N 0°18′51″W

The canal runs beside the large shiny GSK headquarters, a self-storage place, and then the M4. But it also passes parks and is lined with trees; there’s a slightly more remote atmosphere, although ‘rural’ would be stretching it.

Small industrial building with skylight.
1/500 at f8, 23mm, ISO200 51°29′26″N 0°19′16″W
Tree. (Graffiti on bridge.)
1/1000 at f5.6, 23mm, ISO200 51°29′30″N 0°19′34″W
Ironically high Underground bridge.
1/1000 at f8, 23mm, ISO200 51°29′33″N 0°19′46″W
Barge by motorway bridge.
1/500 at f8, 23mm, ISO200 51°29′39″N 0°19′50″W
Canal edging.
1/125 at f8, 23mm, ISO200 51°29′41″N 0°19′50″W
Some planks.
1/500 at f8, 23mm, ISO200 51°29′43″N 0°19′51″W
Large shed opposite.
1/1000 at f8, 23mm, ISO200 51°30′5″N 0°20′20″W

By Ealing Hospital the River Brent finally separates from the canal for good; we followed the riverside path, which I hadn’t walked before.

Puddle in arched bridge.
1/125 at f8, 23mm, ISO200 51°30′29″N 0°20′34″W

Brent Lodge Park

After a short way the path opened up into a park, revealing the very impressive Brunel-designed Wharncliffe Viaduct. It was the first railway viaduct to be built with hollow brick pillars, which are apparently now occupied by bats.

Viaduct overview.
1/500 at f8, 23mm, ISO200 51°30′37″N 0°20′37″W
30-year-old graffiti atop the viaduct; it used to say ‘Mournblade’, a heavy metal band.
1/500 at f8, 23mm, ISO200 51°30′39″N 0°20′37″W
And a wizard.
1/500 at f8, 23mm, ISO200 51°30′39″N 0°20′37″W
View along a viaduct arch.
1/125 at f8, 23mm, ISO200 51°30′39″N 0°20′37″W

Hanwell station is a short distance away; we got a train back from there.

All images © Samuel Marshall. All rights reserved.