I've lived in Newport Pagnell since 1989 and have been fortunate to bring up my family here. Outsiders think Milton Keynes is a concrete city (although it doesn't have city status) with loads of roundabouts and concrete cows. But hey, they are the ones missing out. Out of sight of the roads is a magical network of redways and towpaths...
Many a weekend as a family I would pack a picnic and we would all take off with our bikes to explore, without any costs, safe in the knowledge we were away from the roads and traffic.
Starting at the redway in Newport Pagnell, which was the old railway line between Newport Pagnell and Wolverton, we would stop at Gifford Park to enjoy one of the many play areas.
Once we had managed to persuade the children away from the play area - back on the redway to follow the canal towpath.
Appreciating the long stretch of the avenue of trees, I would image we were in France admiring the houses along the canal with balconies to sit and enjoy the views of wildlife and narrowboats passing. My children, who are now grown up, still remember our family fun filled times with affection.
Now it’s my time…
My partner and I regularly cycle the towpaths in Milton Keynes appreciating the lovely pubs along the canal side. On a lovely summer evening a two-mile cycle ride is rewarded with a drink and food at the Black Horse pub in Great Linford.
Sunday is the time for venturing further; travelling from Newport to Fenny Stratford along the towpaths – nine miles – stopping at The Plough at Simpson.