Unto the Fields of Buckhurst Hill

This walk and video was inspired by a comment on my YouTube channel, urging me to visit Linder’s Field in Buckhurst Hill. I had to confess I’d never heard of it and in the way that digital maps can deceive you, thought I’d never been anywhere near it somehow.

To make more of a walk, I decided to start down by the River Roding, one early afteroon at the end of November, when really the winter should be starting to bite but in reality it was quite mild. The terrain brought to mind my recent discovery of D.W Gillingham’s wonderful book about the Roding Valley, Unto the Fields, published in 1953.

“Now I have chosen this November morning to introduce you to the fields because November is the beginning of Nature’s year”.

Gillingham writes of the misty, frost covered mornings in November when this winter the frost didn’t arrive until near the end of December. I’m not complaining.

Linder's Field Buckhurst Hill

Linder’s Field Buckhurst Hill

Following a stream through a housing estate, remains of Gillingham’s world, I found Linder’s Field on the other side of a footbridge and realised it was the open space I’d seen from the tube a hundred times on the way to Loughton and Theydon Bois and wondered how to reach it. A magical place sealed from the outside world.


  1. John Cousins   •  

    I was born in Wanstead hospital 20th May 1949 and was brought up in Woodford and Buckhurst Hill. As a young lad and as a teenager my adventures were along the river Roding, fishing, swimming at the place we called the Cascades which we thought where a German bomb landed in the river, just up river from the three arched railway bridge beyond Roding Valley station.
    In the winter of 1963 skating on the frozen river, Catching roach to near to the sewage works off Buckhurst Way. In summer playing in the river banks building dens, and late summer conkering in Ray Park. The stretch of the river and its banks was was an adventure land for me and many of my friends.
    Kind regards John Cousins

  2. Mark Derek Skelton   •  

    I was also born in Wanstead hospital but in 1965. I spent much of my summer holidays until we moved the states playing and fishing around the Roding. If anyone knows of a copy of the DW Gillingham book ‘Unto the Fields’ I would love to get one. My mother also grew up in the area (Loughton). Wonderful memories.

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