Image: Xerox Hiking Club Website
The 5,000-year-old Ridgeway is the oldest continuously used road in Europe. It runs close to Chequers and crosses Victory Drive, which is lined with beech trees planted by Winston Churchill in the 1960s.
Chris Ambrose sent us a link to Hiking History, England's Ancient Ridgeway Trail . We hope you enjoy it.
Here on these pale rolling hills, the plowed fields, littered with white hunks of rock, sweep away in gradations of color, from creamy white to dark chocolate. The grassland becomes silvery as it arches into the distance. The wind always seems to be blowing. The landscape is elemental, austere, with a kind of monumental elegance. The formal lines of the fields and hills not only speak of the severity of life in the prehistoric past, but would also match some well-tended parkland belonging to an earl.
I used to come here as a child. The Ridgeway, now officially called the Ridgeway National Trail, was a favorite Sunday outing. Just half an hour south of Oxford, my family’s home back then, its steep turfy hillsides were the best place in the world for rolling downhill. We’d lie across the grassy slopes and roll down sideways. . .for hundreds of feet. . .
Throughout the summer, Chris created wonderful images for our book, Sharing the Inheritance. We'd all like to get out on this trail. Maybe soon.