Caught the X4 bus from the Horsemarket. Alighted at Cliftonville rd,and commenced walking from midsummer meadow via the carpark from where we were joined by Mark.The first part of the walk is close to the town centre passing by Carlsberg,but is a pleasent tranquil corridor within an urban setting.The views soon open up after this as we pass through Stortons pits nature reserve with its beautiful lake scene. After a short break at the Duston mill picnic site we rejoined the canal towpath for about a mile southwards before turning up a lane leading into Hunsbury hill country park.This is a intereresting area originally full,of quarrys converted into lovely woodland ,also featuring the ironstone railway musem which we crossed over on a level crossing.Our route took us through the complete length of the park before a few minutes of passing through a residential area (which included a jewish cemetery!)
Soon after we crossed the main London rd close to Hardingstone and thence into Delapre park walking down to the abbey for lunch.This is a beautifull spot and only about a mile from Northampton town centre.The cafe was excellent and provided good value and being served quickly even through they were busy.
After we had lunch and people had time to explore the walled garden.we continued via a wooded area then skirted Delapre lake.A few minutes passing by the Brackmills industrial area and walking alongside the remains of the former Northampton to Peterborough railway before reaching the Nene at the White water rafting centre watching young people canoeing.
We continued to Midsummer meadow via the Barnes Meadow nature reserve stopping to admire the grazing cattle (so close to Northampton town centre!)It was a short walk from here back up to Cliftonville rd from where we caught the X4 back to Kettering.
Using the bus did mean that for some of the party it was free transport and no driving or less driving and no parking charges,and a nice view from the top deck.
Again a disappointing turnout but my thanks go to Mark Julie John and Vonnie by showing their friendship by coming out and supporting us and thanks to Julie for taking the photographs.
Thanks to David S for organising and leading this walk and providing this report and to Sarah S for back marking.