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Langdon Hills

Circuits through nature reserve and country park

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Walk summary

Summer for Willow Park and One Tree Hill, otherwise any time of the year

Wild flowers and flying insects in the meadows and clearings and along the rides in summer; songbirds all over the place.

Well-used paths can be muddy in winter and wet weather.

Fenchurch St line train to Laindon station (point A), or park at Dunton visitor centre (H) or Lee Chapel Lane (F).

Full circuit from Laindon station (ABCDEFGHIA) 5 hours; eastern section, inc. Willow Park and One Tree Hill 3½ hours from station (ABCDEFBA), 3 hours from Lee Chapel Lane (FBCDEF); circuit from Dunton visitor centre (HIGH) 2 hours.

Undulating terrain on mainly unsurfaced paths; some short sections on quiet roads, and access to the station from Lincewood is mainly by road.

Click on a marker on the map for route details

Stage AB: Laindon station to Mark's Hill

20 mins

Leave Laindon station via the footbridge, turning left at the road, then left again down steps at the end of the bridge. At the bottom of the steps turn right along the pavement, then bear right on to a bridleway. Go straight on where a footpath crosses, through a tunnel of scrub. After entering the woodland of Mark's Hill nature reserve bear right at a T-junction, ignore a footpath entering from the left, then at the next junction bear left up the slope, entering a glade with patches of scrub. Crossing the glade, go straight across a surfaced track and through a barrier, and follow the path until the next footpath enters from the right, with a log seat on the left.

Stage BC: Mark's Hill to Dry Street via Willow Park

65 mins

Continue along the path and turn left at the next junction, following the path down to Staneway, via a gate. Cross the road, then walk up left for 50m and turn right on to a footpath. Keep straight on across a bridleway, following a stream bed – usually dry in summer – on your right. When you join another path, turn right to cross the stream bed then continue diagonally across a meadow. At the other side you come out on to a surfaced bridleway. Turn left on it for 20m then right, and almost immediately right on to a footpath that runs through another meadow and out on to another surfaced bridleway via a gate. Turn left to follow the bridleway. Ignore two footpaths leaving right and take the third at an intersection, leading into a meadow. Continue into a second meadow, bearing left along its edge past a (fenced off) pond then beside a hedgerow, then left through the hedgerow and via a stile into a third, following the hedge on your right down to meet a path across the centre of the meadow, and turning left to follow it down to the bottom corner. Here you meet a bridleway, turning half-right to follow it past the backs of houses. Go straight on at a junction near the old car park, and continue until you meet another bridleway, turning right down to Dry Street.

Stage CD: Dry Street to One Tree Hill

20 mins

Go straight across Dry Street to the bridleway opposite. Follow it parallel to One Tree Hill on the left, then cross the road to the church car park to continue on the other side. At a white poplar the bridleway turns left. Leave it here to follow a footpath that continues straight on through some trees into a meadow. Follow the path along its lefthand edge, then through a hedgerow into a second meadow, continuing uphill until you see the car park and information room through a gap in the hedgerow on your right. Cross the road to the car park.

Stage DE: One Tree Hill to Southway

30 mins

Walk diagonally across the car park passing to the left of the information room. Emerging into open grassland, take the second from right of four grass paths, leading across the brow of the hill towards woodland, with views of the Thames valley ahead. Reaching Northlands Wood, take the right fork leading up into the trees. Keep heading gently upwards forking right to stay close to the edge of the wood, eventually coming out on to a bridleway via a gate, and continuing up to Dry Street. Turn right along Dry Street for 100m then turn left into Southway, a hedged bridleway. Follow it for 200m then turn right over a stile into Willow Park.

Stage EF: Southway to Lee Chapel lane

30 mins

In Willow Park, walk straight ahead across the meadow, over a stile and footbridge to the next and continue up to the centre track, where turn left to follow it to a stile in the hedgerow, then across the next meadow and through the hedge, turning half-right to cross a third meadow, then through bracken and a strip of trees, then half-left across the lefthand side of a fourth meadow, then briefly through woods to a gate. Walk past the gate and turn left on the surfaced track, after 20m turning right off it on to a grass path. Follow this past a damp area on your left to a path junction, turning left across the meadow with the angling lake down on your right. Joining a gravel access track, you soon come to a gate to Victoria Avenue, with a car park opposite.

Stage FB: Lee Chapel Lane to Mark's Hill

25 mins

From the car park, walk 150m back down Lee Chapel Lane and follow a bridleway on the right that leads up to Staneway. Cross straight over and continue up Woodgrange Avenue and into Mark's Hill nature reserve. Take the next footpath on the right, turn left at the next path junction, then continue straight past the pond and, curving round to the right, walk on to a T-junction with a log seat in front of you. Turn left to return to Laindon station, or right for the circuit through Willow Park and One Tree Hill.

Stage FG: Lee Chapel Lane to Lincewood (S)

20 mins

Go past the gate and follow Lee Chapel Lane through the houses until you come out on to Staneway. Cross the road and turn left looking for a bridleway leaving on the right 100m down. Follow it through woods – Hall Wood on your left and private woodland on the right. It turns sharp right just before you come to a junction: head half-left towards a Langdon reserve sign and follow the footpath from there, parallel to the bridleway at first, diverging later. The path runs through woodland with occasional glades. Follow it to a T-junction. (Bear left for the circuit through Dunton; bear right to head back to Laindon station.)

Stage GH: Lincewood (S) to Dunton

35 mins

Continue through woodland, with glimpses of arable farmland through the trees to the left. Keep left at the next T-junction, continuing on the remnants of an old plotlands road. After a footbridge and squeeze posts you join a surfaced bridleway, running beside a belt of trees on the right and arable farmland on the left. Follow it and turn left at the first T-junction, on to a loose-surfaced track, swinging right and heading downhill into Dunton, now a grassy path. As you reach the bottom of the hill turn right on to any of the side paths, then left on the main track that leads to the Dunton visitor centre and car park.

Stage GI: Lincewood (S) to Lincewood (N) (for station)

10 mins

Follow the path through woodland and glades, bearing left at the first T-junction and keeping straight on at the second, coming to an intersection at a length of railings. Turn right and follow the path gently downhill to another intersection, with the path back to Laindon station straight ahead.

Stage HI: Dunton VC to Lincewood (N) via LL&M

65 mins

Take the path that runs across the back of the car park, away from the entrance to the visitor centre. At the first intersection, continue straight on on the footpath a short way down to the left, then go right at a T-junction, then after 50m left, through open ash woodland. Entering Langdon Lake & Meadows, go right at the reserve sign, then left and walk past the lake, turning right beyond it on one of the paths leading up the the hill. Near the top turn right into a meadow via a kissing gate, following the path across the top with views to your right, then out via another kissing gate on the left, turning right when you reach the bridleway. Follow the bridleway straight across the top of the hill until you come to the surfaced path up from the visitor centre, turning left here to climb a little further. Go straight on where the surfaced path swings right, through a belt of trees then across two meadows. Take the righthand fork in the second meadow, following it round by the belt of trees and through a third meadow. Meeting a surfaced bridleway, turn left then shortly right and follow uphill through woodland, passing two footpaths entering from the left, then an exit on the right by railings, until you come to an intersection.

Stage IA: Lincewood (N) to Laindon station

25 mins

Keep straight on on the footpath (an ex-plotlands concrete track), leaving Langdon reserve and following a tarmac path that runs round a playing field and across the end of a road before coming out on Berry Lane. Turn left up Berry Lane, then 300m on right into Emanuel Road. At the end of Emanuel Road (300m), turn left up Langdon Hills High Road, after 200m coming to a roundabout. Take the road straight on which leads over the railway to the station.

Stage IG: Lincewood (N) to Lincewood (S)

10 mins

Turn right and follow the path gently uphill through woodland and glades, keeping straight on at the first T-junction and bearing right at the second, coming to an intersection in a small glade. Turn right and follow the path to another intersection, with the path back to Laindon station straight ahead.