Chelmsford YHA Group


Wednesday Meetings, Weekends Away & Other Events

August 2003

Sunday 3rd August

Visit to Penshurst Place, Kent


Penshurst Place

Penshurst Place is the ancestral seat of the Sidney family and comprises some lovely gardens and a stately house. The great Elizabethan poet, scholar and diplomat Sir Philip Sidney ('Your need is yet greater than mine') was born at Penshurst and it was here that he planned some of the works that revolutionized poetry in England and so inspired Shakespeare, Marlow and their contemporaries.

Sir Richard Chancellor, a member of the Sidney family and the first Englishman to sail into the White Sea and have dinner with Ivan the Terrible, was a visitor at Penshurst between expeditions.

Cost for the house and grounds is adults £6.50. There is a restaurant and tea shop and free car parking at the main entrance. The grounds open are open from 10:30am and the the House from 12 noon. We shall probably arrange to meet at the main entrance at 10:30. am.

Further details on Penshurst Place are on A biography of Sir Philip Sidney is on

From M25 Junction 5, follow A21 to Tonbridge, leaving at HILDENBOROUGH exit; then follow brown tourist signs. Please let John know if you're think of coming, or need a lift.

Wednesday 6th August

The Inn on the Green, Writtle

Writtle Pub Walk


Meet at the public car park east of Writtle green (grid ref TL679063, see map) at 7.30pm for an evening stroll of about three miles, followed by a drink at the Inn on the Green.

9th/10th August

Cycling to Saffron Walden


Saffron Walden hostel

Our regular cycling weekend, this year it's the turn of Saffron Walden hostel.

On Saturday we will cycle from Chelmsford through the north Essex countryside, crossing the Essex Alps to Saffron Walden. The hostel is a 500-year-old former maltings, one of the oldest buildings in the town, retaining many original features, including an oak-wheeled sack-hoist in one of the dormitories.

Returning to Chelmsford by a different route on Sunday. The pace is gentle, with pub meals and tea shop/pub stops. The distance is about 35 miles in each direction. See also some photos from last time.

Meet outside the YMCA in Victoria Road, Chelmsford at 10am on Saturday.

£12 will cover your bed and breakfast

Wednesday 13th August

The Viper

Evening Cycle Ride


If you are sufficiently recovered from the Saffron Walden weekend, dust those bikes off again for a ride to The Viper PH at Mill Green. A modest distance at a modest pace, but bring lights for the ride home. Meet 7:30pm at the YMCA.

Wednesday 20th August

Committee Meeting

Everyone welcome. We will be discussing Wednesday nights for October and weekends away in winter. All suggestions welcome.

22nd to 25th August

Pen-y-Bont-Fawr Scount Centre

Pen-y-Bont-Fawr, Mid-Wales


Tom has booked the Pen-y-Bont-Fawr Scout Centre in the Tanat Valley for the August Bank Holiday weekend.

The centre has a spacious hall/dining area, fully equipped kitchen, drying room, a large dormitory and three smaller bedrooms.

Attractions in the area include Pistyll Rhaeadr (the highest waterfall in Wales), Lake Vyrnwy RSPB reserve, and superb walking in the Aran, Arenig and Berwyn Mountains.


  1. Take the A5 via Shrewsbury
  2. After passing through Nesscliffe on A5, pick up B4396 through Knockin and Morton
  3. Cross A483 at Llynclys and follow the signs for Llanrhaeadr
  4. Two miles before the village of Llanrhaeadr the road branches to the left on to B4396 towards Pen-y-bont Fawr
  5. When this road the joins B4391 bear right towards Penybont and Llangynog
  6. Once you enter the village go past the Railway Inn and the Post Office, just after the turning to Hirnant (on your left) you will see the old school on the right, next to the church. The entrance is down the left-hand side of the building.

Please note: You need to bring a sleeping bag, and your own crockery and cutlery (plate, bowl, cup, knife, fork, spoon)

£15 deposit please. Total cost about £50 including bed, meals and petrol contribution.

Wednesday 27th August

A Bat Walk

James K

Discover bats at Hanningfield. An Essex Wildlife Trust talk followed by a walk in the dark with bat detectors to discover the nocturnal habits of bats.

Meet for 7.30pm start at the Essex Wildlife Trust visitor centre at Hanningfield Reservoir. Turn off the B1007 (Billericay-Chelmsford) on to Downham Road and turn left on to Hawkswood Road. The Visitor Centre entrance is just beyond the causeway opposite Crowsheath Lane. Booking essential: phone 01268 711001.

Sunday 31st August

Bradwell & Tillingham Walk

Dave J

An 11 mile walk through the remote and isolated Dengie peninsula between the Blackwater and Crouch estuaries passing the 7th century St Peter's chapel founded by St Cedd and through the flat expanses of the mouth of the Blackwater with splendid views out to sea. Bring sandwiches, although there are pubs in Bradwell and Tillingham where we can quench our thirst. Meet 11am at Bradwell Marina in Bradwell Waterside. Tell Dave J if you want to share lifts.

Note: Unless otherwise stated, Wednesday events start at 8.30pm at the YMCA in Victoria Road, Chelmsford

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