Chingford: Royals, Rogues and Retreats
Discover evidence of Chingford’s rural roots on this walk.
Although bearing a London postcode (E4) and only 10.5 miles from Central London, North Chingford still has a semi-rural feel to it.
By 1863 when the world’s first underground railway had opened between Farringdon and Paddington the only access into London from Chingford was by twice weekly stagecoach. Unlike its historically more accessible neighbour Walthamstow, Chingford* was practically cut off from civilisation until the arrival of the railway ten years later.
More famously connected with Elizabeth I the hunting lodge in the picture above was built for another famous royal and some 340 years following this event Chingford welcomed the country’s second longest-serving monarch to the town whilst celebrating another significant event in its history.
The walk includes hearing about a 19th Century swindler and the long-forgotten local cutlery industry and how the cutler broke the rules. We will see the former pub built “in the wildest Loire style” but known as the white elephant and hear about a famous composer’s misguided attempt to qualify as a pilot at Chingford Aerodrome. The walk will finish at a 19th Century refreshment retreat on the edge of Epping Forest but only a 10 minute downhill walk back to the station.
The walk starts and finishes close to Chingford Station. Chingford is in Zone 5 and is 10 minutes via London Overground from Walthamstow Central or 25 minutes from Liverpool Street.