London Parks & Gardens Trust

A Cycle Ride around Enfield

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Directions

You can conveniently visit many of Enfield's parks on a bike, riding mostly along country roads and residential suburban streets as well as paths through some of the parks.

The total length is about 23 km (14½ miles). Although you could complete the whole ride in half a day, it is more likely to take a whole day if you stop to look at a few of the sites along the way.

The ride starts and ends at Enfield Chase station. Outside the peak hours, you can take your bike free of charge on the trains serving this station. If you intend to travel on a Sunday, it is advisable to check on www.nationalrail.co.uk that the line is not closed for engineering works. You cannot take your bike on the Piccadilly Line, unless folded.

Description

A large part of the London Borough of Enfield was the royal hunting ground of Enfield Chase from 1136 till its enclosure in 1779. From the 17th century onwards, the gentry were attracted to Enfield and built houses both in the town and in the surrounding countryside. The grounds of several of their country estates are now parks, where the original landscaping and buildings have survived to varying degrees.

Another feature of the Enfield landscape is the New River. Sir Hugh Myddelton's project to bring water 38 miles from Amwell Springs in Hertfordshire through Enfield to Islington was completed in 1613. The course has since been altered several times, with the result that the loops through the Whitewebbs and Forty Hall estates were abandoned.