Leatherhead - Surrey walks

PUBLISHED: 19:41 05 January 2012 | UPDATED: 20:51 20 February 2013

Leatherhead - Surrey walks

Leatherhead - Surrey walks

Enjoy woods, water and wildlife with this lovely autumn stroll along the banks of the River Mole at Leatherhead

Footnotes: all you need to know
Leatherhead train station, Leatherhead Grid reference: 163 568 Map: Ordnance Survey Explorer 146 Length of walk: 5.5 miles Route: Leatherhead train station, Fetcham Grove, River Mole, Norbury Park House and Bocketts Farm Food/drink: The historic The Running Horse (01372 372081) on Bridge Street is a traditional real ale CAMRA and Cask Marque Surrey country pub, serving good quality food. On the High Street, you are spoilt for choice: Vecchia Trattoria (01372 383290) and Piazza Firenze (01372 378852) both offer great menus. Also nearby: For a while, the main attraction would have been Lord Beaverbrooks Cherkley Court, but the house and gardens are once again closed to public visits. Privately owned, plans are being made to transform it into a hotel and golf course. The Fire and Iron Gallery, which made the Dorking Cockerel, is well worth a visit. Recommended by: Bob Hayward, Surrey Area Ramblers / www.surreyramblers.org.uk Next month: Banstead

Originally published in Surrey Life magazine November 2011

Enjoy woods, water and wildlife with this lovely autumn stroll along the banks of the River Mole at Leatherhead

Photos: Andy Newbold

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Viewpoint 1

Highbury, a place that features in Jane Austens Emma, is very likely to be Leatherhead. It is described in the novel as the large and populous village, almost amounting to a town. Jane visited relatives in Great Bookham during the writing of the novel and would have known Leatherhead well.

Viewpoint 2

Legend has it that Queen Elizabeth I spent a night at The Running Horse public house once upon a time when the River Mole flooded. It is also one of the oldest buildings in the area.

Viewpoint 3

The natural condition of the River Mole today belies its earlier, more formal landscaping as part of the estate of Thorncroft Manor. The small Shell Bridge, linking two of the islands, is a survival of a more formal landscape attributed to Capability Brown. If you do this walk in early morning, and by this we mean dawn, you can often see kingfishers as they scoot along the water looking for fish.

Viewpoint 4

Norbury Park is a working landscape, with farms and a commercial sawmill, Norbury Park Wood Products. The park lies within the Surrey Hills Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and is managed by the Surrey Wildlife Trust. Norbury Blue cheese is also made here.

Viewpoint 5

Bocketts Farm is a working farm with a combination of animals and play areas that make it a very popular destination for families. Particular highlights include the pig race course, pony rides, kitchen garden and 18th Century barn tearooms.

Why not share your reviews and photos from this walkbelow and suggest your own favourite Surrey rambles by sending an e-mail to matthew.williams@surreylife.co.uk

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