Pete's Walks - Grand Union Canal, Milton Keynes (page 1 of 2)

If you are considering walking this route yourself, please see my disclaimer. You may also like to see these notes about the maps.

I did this walk of about 17 miles (8.5 miles each way, 'guesstimate' only!) on Monday, 15th August, 2011. I had to take my car in to a garage in Milton Keynes for a service and MOT, and chose to go for a 'there and back' walk along the Grand Union Canal while I waited.

I started walking from the garage, which is actually in Kingston on the eastern edge of Milton Keynes, about 8.55am. I first had to follow a couple of main roads and then turn northwards into Milton Keynes village (the original village before the new town was built). I turned left along a bridleway by the ancient parish church, following it all the way to Woolstone - at one point I crossed a bridge over the river Ouzel in a small area of woodland just south of Willen Lake. I passed another old church in Woolstone, and then took a path under a main road that led to the Grand Union Canal (just north of bridge 82, I checked the bridge number so I'd know where to turn off when I came back).

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A fairly typical scene of the Milton Keynes road network

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Milton Keynes village - I turned left by the bridleway sign in the middle of this photo

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The ancient church in Milton Keynes village

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The river Ouzel

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The old church in Woolstone

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Approaching the Grand Union Canal

I followed the canal tow path northwards, with the canal on my left. Beyond the hedge on my right was a hard-surfaced bridleway or cycleway, but I kept to the towpath. Initially I was in a district called Campbell Park, but as I gradually moved northwards I reached Great Linford. I spotted a few wildflowers along the edge of the canal, including Skullcap and Amphibious Bistort, plus two that were new for me - Gypsywort and Trifid Bur-Marigold. After about 2.5 miles the canal turned westwards, though I didn't really notice it as I walked along. After about another mile, still in Great Linford, I reached a short section of canal that I remembered from my Swan's Way walk three years ago.

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The Grand Union Canal, just north of where I joined it

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Grand Union Canal

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Grand Union Canal

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Grand Union Canal

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Grand Union Canal

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Grand Union Canal

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Grand Union Canal

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Grand Union Canal

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Grand Union Canal - this bridge was where I ended Day 1 of my Swan's Way walk and started Day 2.