At 955ha, Richmond Park is undoubtably London’s premier running destination. The Tamsin Trail is the ideal taster.
The trail roughly follows the park’s perimeter and can be started at any point. However, this description begins and ends at Pembroke Lodge, which has a car park, cafe, drinking fountain, and toilets—making it the ideal start location.
Start: From Pembroke Lodge, and going clockwise, find the paved trail heading towards the Richmond Gate entrance. Look for the blue arrows marking the way for the Tamsin Trail.
0.55mi: Richmond Gate. As you come to each intersecting road, look for the continuation of the trail opposite, always marked with the blue arrow. The trail sticks reasonably close to the park boundary and is largely flat over the first half, with a barely noticeable descent.
2mi: Sheen Gate. Most of this section is nestled amongst the trees that line the park boundary. These trees have recently been trimmed and thinned to keep your view of the park nice and open—making the trail much safer for solo runners.
2.5mi: Roehampton Gate. There are toilets, a cafe, and even bike hire just past this park entrance.
3.75mi: Robin Hood Gate. At the 3.5-mile point (just before Robin Hood Gate) you will begin to climb up to Broomfield Hill. The climb lasts about a mile all up. From the summit (58m, compared to the lows of 9m the course encounters at the 2.8mi mark) you’ll head down, winding through oak trees and pockets of grassland.
4.9mi:Ladderstile Gate. This is a pedestrian-only entrance way and also marks the beginning of the descent.
5.55mi: Kingston Gate. The trail makes a 90-degree turn to the right (north) here. There are also toilets at this gate.
6.35mi: Ham Gate Pond. After the final road crossing, before returning to Pembroke Lodge, the Tamsin Trail splits in two. Take the right hand option closest to the road as this will provide the most direct route home. Oh and there’s another little climb as you come towards home.
7.25mi: Pembroke Lodge. Grab an ice cream or a coffee from the cafe as your reward. There are also toilets and a drinking fountain here.
Warm Down: The walled gardens of Pembroke Lodge make for a great little warm down jog/walk. And while you’re here, be sure to check out the little surprise view at King Henry’s Mound (just north of Pembroke Lodge).
Explore the centre of the park, head to the nearby Thames Path (accessible from Richmond and Petersham Gates), or follow the Beverley Brook Walk east into Wimbledon Common or north to Barnes Common and the Thames.
Distance: 7.25mi (11.7km)
Surface: Crushed limestone, dirt, and some sealed sections.
Terrain: Moderate hills.
Traffic Warning: There are several roads through the park so take care when crossing these.
Weather Warning: Some sections are exposed to the weather.
Time Restrictions: Closed after dusk (opens 7:30am in winter and 7:00am in summer).
Toilets: Pembroke Lodge, Richmond Gate, Sheen Gate, Roehampton Gate, Robin Hood Gate, Kingston Gate, and Ham Gate.
Start/Finish: Pembroke Lodge, Richmond, Borough of Richmond, TW10 (9.9mi southwest of central London)
Rail: Richmond Tube Station (District Line) is 1.2mi north of Richmond Gate (where you can start the run instead).
Bus: 65 & 371.
Car: Parking available at Pembroke Lodge.
Thumbs Up: A beautiful park and an easy-to-follow trail. And of course, close ups of wild deer.
Thumbs Down: It’s obviously a little harder to get to than the central London runs.
Warning about deer: This from the park authorities: “The deer are wild animals, so never try to touch or feed them. Always keep a respectful distance, especially if you have a dog. Dogs must be kept on leads when deer are nearby—it is an offense to allow a dog to chase the deer.” If you want to know why, Google search “fenton deer video”.
SHARE THIS RUN