The English spring has finally sprung, buds are bursting, birds are filling St Albans and Harpenden parks and woodlands. Getting out more for a spring stroll around St Albans and Harpenden is a must. Visiting local areas on foot is a great way to get to know a place especially if you are thinking of moving to the area.
To arrive on foot in St Albans you could choose to follow The Alban Way. The Alban Way travels along the trackbed of the former Hatfield to St Albans branch line of the Great Northern Railway and runs for six and a half miles. It has a smooth surface and many access points, most of which are ramped or level, making a really safe, accessible and traffic-free route for walkers and cyclists. At this time of year, in particular, The Alban Way isn’t just a delight for people, its green corridor for many plants, insects, birds and animals. By keeping your eyes peeled you may be able to see the former railway platforms in the undergrowth being rewilded by nature.
If you fancy something a bit grand on your spring stroll halfway between St Albans and Harpenden can be found Childwickbury. It is the private estate once owned by film director Stanley Kubrick and still home to his artist wife Christiane. She was the founder of the annual art fair held in the (very grand) stable block built by another previous owner; furniture magnate and racehorse owner Sir John Blundell Maple.
The estate has a small but perfectly formed hamlet built on it that features a church built by Sir George Gilbert Scott who was the architect of The Albert Hall and St Pancras Station in London. Childwickbury welcomes walkers on some estate roads where you can wander past grazing livestock and ancient woodland in a picture-perfect landscape that hasn’t changed for centuries. Interesting local colour if you are thinking of making the move to St Albans or Harpenden this spring.