Choir walking group


The CMVC walking group was back in action on Tuesday August 26 with a challenging circuit of more than five miles from the White Hart pub in Chipstead. Seven choir members spent three and a half hours walking through and over the North Downs in drizzly weather that did nothing to dampen their spirits.

The choir seven pose at their refreshment halt at Well House Inn (photo Trevor Watkins)

The walkers traversed a variety of landscapes, from woodland and meadows to grazing fields and horse paddocks. There were several stiff climbs and subsequent drops as they encountered the ridges and valleys of the Downs. They also steered a path among the manicured greens and bunkers of the Surrey Downs golf club.



Choir walking group member Peter Gillman climbed two Munros at Easter.  The Munros were Geal-Charn and A'Mharcoinach in the Drumochter Hills. The total ascent was 750 metres and the walk took Peter - a member of the bass section -  and his son Seth six hours.

Peter celebrates on summit of Geal-Charn

The climb marked Peter's return to the Scottish hills following an accident in October 2012, when he ruptured his right quadriceps tendon.  Following his operation at the Princess Royal Hospital, Farnborough, Peter spent three months in plaster and then on crutches.

"I set myself the motivational target of climbing a Munro," Peter says.  "In the event Seth and I did two.  It was a fabulous day, one of the best."

The Munros are Scottish mountains more than 3000ft (914ms) high.  There are 283 of them and Peter finished climbing them in 2010. Peter is 72.

The choir walking group will be undertaking a low-level outing near Croydon soon.

Seth Gillman approaches summit of A'Mharcoinach


The walking group took advantage of a day of fine weather to complete its walk of the Wandle Trail. Having covered the southern half last month, it tackled the northern stretch from Wandsworth to Mitcham on Tuesday February 18.

Near journey's end: Messrs Lee, Watkins, Mouat, Evans and Jones put their feet up at Riverside pub


The choir walking group, in the shape of choir bass Peter Gillman, walked to the foot of the North Face of Ben Nevis on Tuesday February 4.

Peter sends greetings from a wintry Ben Nevis


The choir's hard-core walkers covered a substantial section of the Wandle Trail on January 20, starting in Mitcham and finishing at the trusty Royal Standard in central Croydon.

The intrepid four beside Wandle near Mitcham. L to r: Dick Jones, Steve Lloyd, Peter Gillman, Roger Lee.

The walk followed the course of the River Wandle for six miles.  It started in Poulter Park and went through Watercress Park, Dale Park, Beddington Park and Waddon Ponds park before hitting Waddon Road and the final stretch to the Standard, where our host Martin Perkins oversaw proceedings.



The choir walking group met three times in the autumn.  In October a select pair (Roger Lee, Peter Gillman) did a delightful linear walk from Botley Farm to Crockham Hill, enjoying warm autumn sunshine.

Choir walkers near West Wickham in December

In November the same pair, plus Dick Jones and Jon Evans, undertook  a five-mile circular walk from Downe, passing through Berry's Green and Luxted before skirting the Charles Darwin house on the return to Downe.  Once again the group had delightful weather.

And in December a new grouping - Messrs Evans, Gillman and Jones plus Chris Beckley and Trevor Watkins - walked from Hayes station to Eden Park station via Coney Hall, West Wickham parish church, and Springpark Woods.

The walking group has proved a splendid addition to the choir's excellent social activities and has also been instrumental in attracting at least one new member to the choir.

The Botley two: Roger and Peter, keeping the spirit alive

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