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July to December 2007

January to June 2008

Just Friends Walking Group - January- June 2007

We belong to the aptly named Just Friends walking group which is made up of people, mainly with a Methodist Church background from Norwich and the surrounding areas.

The group meets every two weeks on Tuesdays for five to six mile walks in Norfolk.

The members take it in turns to organise and lead the walks, which usually culminate in lunch.

At the start of 2007 we started to take photographs of the group and below is a short record of the walks to date. Click on the individual photos to open a larger image.

January 9th, 2007

THE walk was around the Thorpe area of Norwich - starting out and finishing at the Cottage Public House off Thunder Lane. The group are pictured on the right after a morning coffee shop stop. The walk, which was mainly urban in nature covered a distance of approximately five miles and was organised by John.

The walk took in the picturesque area around Thorpe Green and some interesting architecture around the Yarmouth Road area on the outskirts of the city and concluded with lunch at the Cottage Public House. 

On the left is Thorpe Green and above some of the interesting rooftops in Yarmouth Road.

January 23rd, 2007

EARLY morning snow and sleet showers gave way to reasonable weather for a walk organised by John and Heather which started at Sloughbottom Park off Drayton Road on the Norwich Ring Road.

The route took in areas of land around Hellesdon Mill and was a mix of urban and rural.

The photograph below left was taken just across from the river at Hellesdon where a giant tree had been uprooted by the winds of the previous weeks. The roots had been ripped out of the ground and the branches had crashed onto the roof, smashing tiles in what must have been a frightening experience for the owners.

During the walk of about four to five miles we also saw other debris caused by the gales including an advertising  hoarding which had been smashed by the winds (see picture on the right).

As with every walk, this one culminated with refreshments - this time at tea rooms in nearby Drayton.

February 6th, 2007

The first walk of February was in the Coltishall area.

We met at the Recruiting Sergeant Public House (where we later had lunch) and then undertook a walk of about six miles through fields made soft by recent rain and running alongside the River Bure.

There was a series of stiles to negotiate before having a midway break and then turning back and walking along the Bure Valley Way and the Bure Valley Railway Line to Coltishall.

On the way we passed Little Hautbois (pronounced Hobbis) Hall. This walk was led by David and Janet. The morning was cold and frosty but became brighter as the walk progressed.

Above left is Cotishall Church and right a lone swan navigates the River Bure with Little Hautbois Hall in the distance.

March 6th, 2007

The first walk in March attracted an excellent response with 16 people meeting at the small car park by the river at Cringleford just outside Norwich.

The five mile walk went along the riverbank to the University of East Anglia and then across Earlham Park and the main Norwich to Watton Road, through fields to the edges of Bowthorpe and then back along Colney Lane to Cringleford and lunch at the Cellar House. The walk was organised by Anne and Peter.

On the left is Colney Church and above the group of 15 (photographer excluded of course)

The walk scheduled for March 20th was cancelled due to bad weather

April 3rd, 2007

The walk started and ended at the Shoulder of Mutton Public House in Strumpshaw and took in just over five miles of rural Norfolk around Strumpshaw Fen and across fields.

One of the most interesting stops on the route is photographed on the right at the top. The walking group are pictured outside St Michael's Church in Braydeston. Brundall and Braydeston were separate communities until they merged in 1883, but two separate churches have survived.

An attempt by the Bishop of Norwich and the Church Commissioners in 1948 to close the church led to a celebrated legal battle, eventually tried by the Lord Chief Justice in Downing Street. The people of Braydeston won the day and the church retained its status as a parish church.

April 17th

This walk was mainly urban in nature with 13 group members taking to the streets around Norwich. It started and finished at the Crown Point Public House in Trowse and moved up Bracondale to Sainsbury's in Queen's Road. Then we walked along the old city railway line to the Lakenham area, past the Cock Public House and across the fields and back to Crown Point for lunch.

May 1st

Sixteen people took part in a walk organised by John and Heather around Wymondham and Silfield in South Norfolk.

Beautiful sunshine accompanied us throughout as we walked across open fields and rural paths, criss-crossing the major road system on a number of occasions. 

The walk started and finished at Wymondham Railway Tavern and also included the historic

Wymondham Railway Station which is depicted below. The station which usually boasts a riot of colourful flowers and also one of the best railway cafes in the country has won several awards but is slightly off colour at the present due to some mindless  vandalism. It is still a very attractive sight, however.

May 15th

The walk started at Hainford and worked its way around fields and locations and back to the Hainford Chequers for lunch. The day started out bright and warm but 15 minutes into the walk the rain started to come down as the group photo above shows. Sixteen people took part in the 4.5 mile walk which was organised by John. Below is the less acceptable face of the Norfolk countryside.


May 29th

The May 29th walk was around the Rockland St Mary area. Just click on the photographs to see enlarged images.

June 26th

The final walk in the first half of 2007 was round the Hethersett/Ketteringham area - across fields, bridle paths and quiet roads. Eleven members took part.

Unfortunately it will be a walk to remember for one of our members as Juliet caught her foot in one of the many puddles and muddy areas and broke her ankle. Everyone in the group wishes her a speedy recovery. The incident brought an otherwise pleasant ramble to an early end. Sadly the recent heavy rain had turned many of the fields into boggy areas.

The photograph on the left and above are of Ketteringham Church and graveyard. Obviously the photographer doesn't mind converging perpendiculars!!!


Juliet Lomas' photographic gallery of 2007 walks.

(click on the individual photographs for a bigger image)

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