A walk along Loxford Water and Seven Kings Water

A river walk following two tributaries of the River Roding

Our walk starts at Barking Park where the Loxford Water flows beside the boating lake. Barking Park opened in 1898 and is fine example of a late Victorian park. We then walk along South Park Drive where the Loxford Water flows along a culvert to South Park, where the river starts its journey to the Roding.

Our walk along the Seven Kings Water begins on the other side of the lake crossing Green Lane and then walking along High Gardens and Aldborough Road South to Seven Kings High Road. The river leads us into Westwood Recreation Ground where we see the Seven Kings Water flowing above ground for the first time. Our river walk then takes us through Seven Kings Park, around King George’s Hospital and across the A12 Eastern Avenue. We have to leave the side of the river for a while here as it runs across inaccessible land and rough ground and our route takes us up Hainault Road. We are re-united with the river in Elmbridge Road, Hainault where it flows into the Garden of Peace cemetery. We walk parallel to the course of the river along Huntsman Road to Peregrine Road where we again find the Seven Kings Water.

Loxford Water

Loxford Water at Barking Park

Loxford Water

South Park Lake

The last section of the walk takes us into Hainault Forest Country Park where the Seven Kings Water has its source in the lake. Thanks to Paul who suggested this walk in a comment on my video of a walk along the Cran Brook, and Diamond Geezer for his description of the course of the Seven Kings Water and Loxford Water.


  1. Graham fowell   •  

    Very interesting. Our old flat in the block at the top of Seven kings road, (Electric parade). Had a water course running under the block diagonally from under the railway line down the back of Gardens to green lane. We saw the enormous circular brick culvert in the basement of the flat at number 4/5. It is culverted in all the way to the park. It’s actually huge subterranean culvert which you could drive a family car down.

  2. Pingback: The 'Unlost' River of East London - the lost byway

  3. Tim   •  

    I think the Ilford/Barking boundary marker is still just outside the South Park Drive entrance to Barking Park.

  4. malcolm Staight   •  

    I Grew up in Chadwell Heath from 1952-1974 and now live in Surrey. The area of Seven Kings water known as Happy Valley with an access via a gate from the Eastern Avenue was open to the public. I spent lots of time catching sticklebacks with a net with friends. In the summer it was about a foot deep to just a few inches with it about 4 yards wide. This area was about 100 yards long in the shade of trees about 80 yards from the Eastern Avenue there was clearly the remains of a wooden built banking which i now believe was the remains of a bridge..
    I understand Prior to the Eastern Avenue being built there had been a wooden bridge in the Happy Valley section. The section North of the Eastern Avenue to Hainault Road was walkable until around 1958 when Hargreaves Scouts camp was built. Even then about 200 yards was still possible to walk.
    Again on this section it was possible to catch Sticklebacks in our nets. These were the only fish life i ever saw in this section. On the Barking Park section in the lake although fishing with a rod and line was not allowed for a period the park keepers turned a blind eye and it was full of Gudgeon. a small fish that grows to about 4oz.. I understand South Park lake also had fish life.
    The main source of Hainault Lake was always busy with fishermen. Fishing was free on the whole lake and was boat free .I fished it for many years from late 1950s till around 1980 with Rudd, Tench Perch, Carp and Crusion Carp and the odd Pike.
    The lake was very silted up behind the island in the early 60s resulting in it being dredged. At one time before this it was even possible to walk in wellies on to the island. The silting up is caused by two very small streams of water one from the field known as Cabin Plain the other on the far back from the forest.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.