Capital Ring 8 and 9: Hanwell to Sudbury Hill


Due to several mistakes before setting out that morning, we didn’t start this walk until a good 90 minutes later than intended, at about half past one. (It also confused me a little that on that morning, there weren‘t any direct trains to Hanwell; you had to go through it to Southall, then change to a train in the opposite direction. This added a little more time as the train was late.)


We walked a short way through residential streets to reach Brent Lodge Park.

Somebody‘s garage.
1/1000 at f8, 23mm, ISO200 51°30′44″N 0°20′24″W

After admiring the large viaduct again, we set off away from it through the park, and promptly got lost. We got back on track eventually, but only after seeing nearly all possible angles of a tall church tower on one edge of the park.

Gravelled edge of the River Brent.
1/250 at f8, 23mm, ISO200 51°30′41″N 0°20′49″W
Cut-off metal support.
1/500 at f8, 23mm, ISO200 51°30′47″N 0°20′57″W

Escaping Brent Lodge Park, we crossed a road and then returned by the river into Perivale Park. This was mostly occupied by sports grounds and included a frankly infeasible number of cricket matches, each with teams dressed in different bright primary colours. I suppose if they all wore white you wouldn't be able to tell who was in which match.

Tree planting in Perivale Park.
1/1000 at f8, 23mm, ISO200 51°31′49″N 0°20′33″W

Road and rail

After that we reached the A40 (Western Avenue) and crossed it using the handy footbridge. It‘s a very busy dual carriageway, with traffic noise loud enough to make talking difficult for quite some distance, and polluted air.

Nice footbridge though. (Railway bridge behind.)
1/500 at f8, 23mm, ISO200 51°32′3″N 0°20′16″W

We followed residential streets and crossed a sports ground before reaching a main road.

With a pair of large railway bridges.
1/500 at f8, 23mm, ISO200 51°32′29″N 0°20′35″W

Passing an ugly shopping centre, we entered Paradise Fields. Given the name I immediately assumed it was built on the site of an old toxic waste dump, but I was wrong: this nature reserve was built on a golf course. Definitely an improvement anyway.


We followed the path through the site, then joined the canal towpath (it's the Paddington Branch of the Grand Union, which I walked with my mum seven years ago).

Canalside building in tree-shadow.
1/250 at f8, 23mm, ISO200 51°32′32″N 0°20′0″W
Grey warehouse and tree.
1/500 at f8, 23mm, ISO200 51°32′31″N 0°19′38″W
Bridge (1).
1/1000 at f5.6, 23mm, ISO200 51°32′32″N 0°19′31″W
Bridge (2).
1/250 at f8, 23mm, ISO200 51°32′32″N 0°19′31″W

Horsenden Hill

We left the canal and climbed Horsenden Hill, which is actually quite a reasonable hill by London standards. There were good views in several directions from the top, across to Southall gasholder and the control tower at Heathrow Airport. The path took us down through woods and into more back streets, which we followed to Sudbury Hill station.

Possibly alive tree in the woods.
1/500 at f8, 23mm, ISO200 51°32′59″N 0°19′43″W
Roadside tree.
1/500 at f8, 23mm, ISO200 51°33′6″N 0°19′55″W

Sudbury Hill station

This Piccadilly Line station seems little changed from an original Art Deco design.

Nice toilets too.
1/125 at f2.8, 23mm, ISO200 51°33′25″N 0°20′10″W
Opposite platform.
1/125 at f8, 23mm, ISO200 51°33′24″N 0°20′13″W
Advertising hoarding.
1/125 at f8, 23mm, ISO200 51°33′25″N 0°20′12″W
Looking up the tall building from the platform.
1/125 at f8, 23mm, ISO200 51°33′25″N 0°20′12″W

All images © Samuel Marshall. All rights reserved.