Chingford to Ilford Central Library (Hainault Street)
Tuesday August 24th 2010
We had been quite taken with Chingford on this our first visit; though it proved to be something of a flying visit as we finished with the 97. Chingford, though largely sporting smaller Thirties-type properties, one even a bungalow complete with Lych-gate, seemed to have a villagey feel accounted for perhaps by the Village Green complete with rural sounding pub – the Bull on the Green, though in reality its upper stories are quite derelict! So much for the villagey feel – Googling the local paper suggests that not all the local residents love
this particular pub ....
May be Chingford is an illusory village but Woodford felt even more rural, coming complete with duck pond, village green, village sign (missed that one) and the very southern edge of Epping Forest, which the bus edges along whilst weaving its way on Whitehall Lane. The schools look equally old-fashioned – we’re used to seeing all the new builds in Inner London so to see an ivy clad Bancroft’s or even a mid 20th Century Woodford County Girls School made quite a change. Woodford was of course the parliamentary seat which Churchill held for many years – he is commemorated in many ways through out the Woodfords – he seems to have or run an estate agents and a café, but most significantly he has a good statue on the Common.
Heading south all the while the bus takes a left turn towards South Woodford Station. The George pub at the end of the road seems to give its name to a small shopping centre – more passenger traffic here. What was more impressive however was the beautifully restored terrace of ?early 19th century houses complete with Terrazzo flooring and canopies. Inevitably they have been taken over by the local doctors and solicitors but look pretty nevertheless.
The 179 does a little loop to take in the station and seems to be the only bus hereabouts except for some W routes (we cannot bear to think how old we will be on getting to those!) and then emerges at the local landmark that is Charlie Brown's roundabout. There are many photographers who have taken better pictures than us.
The only interesting thing about OUR photo was how clearly it showed the ‘storm clouds gathering’ – we hope you all get the reference for our Churchillian blog this week – and indeed before we had crossed over the River Roding and back into Inner London courtesy of Newham borough it started raining quite hard.
This bit of route is quite familiar to us and we welcomed again the greenery, which is Valentine’s Park – there was another school nearby and again the young people were streaming out clutching their results envelopes.
In case you have neither acting talent as Will Kemp, nor his stamina, neither did you get the results you hoped for the ETGS also offers courses though seemingly not for free.
Not much of this route seemed that new to us, except right at the beginning, but it was novel to visit Chingford and a while since we had been in Ilford … not that there was much river fording left in this route, more like weaving its way to avoid the major trunk routes leading East out of London.