It was a dry, bright morning and the train, bringing the majority of the walkers, arrived exactly on time to join the others already gathered at Sea Mills railway station, near the site of a Roman port where the River Trym and the tidal River Avon meet. We set off, following the winding Trym valley through woodland in its autumn colours, until we came into the Blaise estate, which was landscaped on a grand scale by Humphry Repton. Eventually, after passing through the steep gorge, we reached Henbury Church and briefly visited the grave of Scipio Africanus, a former slave who sadly died in 1720 aged only 18 years. Shortly afterwards we stopped for lunch at Blaise Mansion. After lunch we climbed up to the turreted castle, a folly which overlooks the estate and gives fine views over the gorge and woods to Sneyd Park. Another stretch of woodland and common took us to the imposing Kingsweston House, which has been restored to reveal its fine classical exterior features. There was a short break for refreshments and a chance to take in the view, across the industrial scene around Avonmouth and beyond over the River Severn to the south Wales coast and the hills behind. We then walked on through parkland, a cricket ground and the edge of a golf course to reach the magnificent Horseshoe Curve on the River Avon, with views over north Somerset. Another mile or so along the banks of the River Avon brought us back to our starting point where we said our farewells. Those returning by train had a five minute wait before the arrival of the return train.
Many thanks to all who came along and who made it such an enjoyable day. We are also very grateful to Bill Fuller for taking many excellent photographs during the walk.
John and Martin