Off Road running in London

Looking for long run suggestions in London for weekend runs

17 messages
16/10/2012 at 16:54


Does anyone know of any good off road / trail runs in London? Most of my weekly runs are to/from work so along main roads from Clapham to central london. It would be nice to pass through somewhere slightly more scenic than Stockwell or Elephant and Castle on my longer weekend runs.

I've used the canal paths occassionally, which make a nice change, and obviously I can do loops of the parks. Wimbledon is not that far, and Richmond just a bit further (although a bit on the hilly side). Wondered if anyone had found somewhere within zone 2 or 3 that's pleasant to run.

16/10/2012 at 17:00

This might give you a few ideas.  I'm fairly familiar with the Green Chain Walk, which is the SE section of the Capital Ring.  It struggles to stay "green" at some points but is still a bit of an eye-opener to how many green spaces there are in London.

16/10/2012 at 17:11

ah, wow, thanks Phil

16/10/2012 at 20:45

Look at the TFL site - they have I think 7 key walks around London, mostly greener than built-up. The London LOOP is astonishingly rural in many places. If you start in Erith it is positively bleak, Dickensian. 

16/10/2012 at 20:49

I'd strongly recommend getting the official guide for the LOOP if you want to run it. Waymarking is almost good enough, but it's nice to have a map and written instructions, as well as commentary on what you're seeing.

18/10/2012 at 21:35

I stick to the embankment, north side is good going both east and west

25/10/2012 at 17:24

Run the Wandle trail!

From Clapham you can follow the Thames Path down to Wandsworth and pick up the trail from there, might have to dodge a few cars around Wandsworth until you get to King Georges Park and then a few side streets around Earlsfield until you get back on to the river trail proper but then its a good run all the way down to Carshalton and back.

Of course you could always stay on the Thames Path and follow that up river, once pass Putney Bridge its all tow path.

25/10/2012 at 18:31
Colin McLaughlin wrote (see)
Sussex Runner (NLR) wrote (see)
The freedom of peaceful assembly is conditional on the laws of the land which does not allow racism. The OP posed the question " is this racism" ? So rather than answer the question Col you have said what we loony lefties call - stated the bloody obvious.

Okay, I'll answer it better then.

The purpose of black people forming an organisation for black people won't be, in order to exclude white people. The purpose of black people forming an organisation for black people is so black people can consort with other black people. Look at motive. So it isn't racist, no.

If white people formed a "white footballers association", on the other hand, I suggest it's probable that the actual purpose of the organisation would be to exclude black people - to discriminate - so that would be racist.

Look at motive.


I don't have any problem with black people hanging out with black people within a peaceful organisation if they want to.


Dutch Johnny wrote (see)

Run the Wandle trail!

"Tarmac or fine gravel and dust"

I appreciate that this maybe heaven in London, and I don't want to sound like a countryside snob, but this isn't exactly off road, is it? Tarmac and Gravel? To me off road is when it rains your shoes are twice the size after ten yards because of all the mud caked on them.

25/10/2012 at 18:34

...crap webstie, I didn't put the first part of the quote in...and now I can't edit it...? 

25/10/2012 at 19:20

Blimey. Never mind.



1. Train it to Kingston SW mainline railway station.

2. Run half a mile to the River Thames.

3. Run along the River Thames path from Kingston to Richmond.

4. Just before Richmond, proceed up the hill and into Richmond Park via Richmond Gate.

5. Run halfway round (or across) Richmond Park by whatever route you want, exiting via Robin Hood Gate.

6. Cross the A3. (They've put in traffic lights for pedestrians now, so it's safe and easy to cross.)

7. Proceed around (or across) Wimbledon Common by whatever route you want, ending up at Wimbledon Village.

8. Run down Wimbledon Hill.

9. Train it home.


26/10/2012 at 07:49

Couldn't agree more Lardarse but the ask was off road running in London so unless you head down to Richmond Park/Wimbldon Common then towpaths it is as at least it gets you away from the traffic.

Places around the London Loop can offer you mud but is that really London? The Loop is around London so takes in Kent/SurryHerts/Essex and not a London address, i.e SW4

26/10/2012 at 08:17

I didn't mean to sound to pretentious, I was interested in the thought process. So if you live in London you see a run as being off road if it means you can run next to grass and see the odd tree, even if you're still on tarmac. I just found that fascinating. I run on roads mostly, but i'm always a side step from being on grass/in a field/falling in a ditch. Although this is virtually traffic free i'd never consider it as off road. I wouldn't consder running through a park off road either. Some of the routes I take when it's dry I actively avoid when it's rained heavy because you just can't run there - 18 inch deep tractor trails full of water.

26/10/2012 at 11:32

I should have clarified in the opening post and title of this thread, I meant "away from the road" rather than strictly "off road" which to me means caked up to the waist in cow shit or bounding around Mordor's mountains, neither of which are very accessible in London, so I manage my expectations accordingly.

04/11/2012 at 20:13

I quite enjoy running in Trent Park/Whitewebbs wood - might be a bit far out for you but you can actually run through the woods.

08/11/2012 at 21:30

I've been looking for somewhere a little muddier to run aswel, does anyone run in Epping Forest, it's not far up the central line.

08/11/2012 at 22:41

I go walking in Epping Forest sometimes and see the odd runner there, but not many. It does seem to get quite boggy.

AgentGinger if it's not actual off-road you're looking for, you can have quite a pleasant MLR linking up Battersea Park, Clapham Common, Wandsworth, Tooting and Streatham Commons, but you probably know that.


12/11/2012 at 13:53
I have a good mostly away from road route which you could do from Clapham, through brockwell, up to dulwich park and bellair park, Sydenham woods up to crystal palace park, round and back.

PM if you want a guide one weekend.
Edited: 12/11/2012 at 13:53

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