Walk the Walks

As the sun emerges after some very welcome rain, why not go out for a walk? In particular, if you live in or near Clapham in South London, go for a stroll on its wonderful and historic Common.

To add to your enjoyment and exercise your ‘little grey cells’ as well as your calf muscles, you could follow the Clapham Literary Trail (  Clapham literary trail leafletFinal ) a self-guided walk which takes about ninety minutes and includes Clapham landmarks and the places where Clapham authors of renown, past and present, lived and worked.  There are lots of blue plaques to find and works to identify.

It takes the form of a quiz ( answers supplied ), so, if you fancy testing your literary as well as your historical knowledge of Clapham, while taking some exercise and enjoying the Summer, download the pdf from this web-site or from the Clapham Book Festival site and stride out.

For the younger walker, the Clapham Children’s Book Trail ( Clapham children’s book walk final (1) ) is a version of the Literary Trail designed specifically with walkers aged 8 – 12 in mind, this time accompanied by an adult.   As the school Summer holidays approach, take a walk through children’s literature – you’d be surprised at just which famous writers for younger readers have lived here ( clue – there are very famous wizards, and witches, involved ).

If, on the other hand, art is your thing, why not try the Clapham Art Trail ( Clapham art trail leaflet final (2) ). The Common has attracted artists through out the centuries, who have rendered it in various forms of paint and graphite, from the internationally famous masters to the lesser known. Today local artists are still inspired by the urban, but somehow not quite urban scenes.  Another quiz, illustrated by some of the works in which the green space has featured takes you around the Common.

All the Trails, designed by Clapham Writers, begin at Clapham Common tube station, though many of the works referred to in the leaflets were created long before the Underground existed.

All are FREE to download from this web-site or the Clapham Book Festival web-site,  though we would welcome any donations you would like to make using the Paypal button on screen.  All proceeds go towards delivering the Book Festival and associated literary and reading activities.  If you’re out and about at the Clapham Summer Fete on 31st August why not come and have a chat at the Clapham Book Festival stall, where we’ll have books for sale in aid of the Festival.

This year’s Book Festival is on Saturday 5th October at Omnibus Theatre, so why not check out the Programme . History, historical fiction, biography, memoir, contemporary fiction and journalism are just some of the topics featured in sessions this year, with household names like Frank Gardner and Professor Kate Williams, as well as this year’s Ondaatje Prize winner, Aida Edemariam talking to Booker listee Michele Roberts.  Tickets are already available and are selling fast, so make sure you get yours at Omnibus.

You can find articles about Clapham Book Festivals past at                    Clapham Book Festival 2018                 Historical Seduction             Clapham Book Festival 2017                   Place and the Writer


About Julie Anderson

J J Anderson is a south London writer.
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