Once inside the gate I felt a little like I was being watched all the time, but to be honest this was probably more a result of my paranoia rather than being based on fact. The path itself was fairly unremarkable as it wound its way around the southern end of the map, but that is not to say that it was not enjoyable and devoid of interest. All the interest really lay offshore, with hundreds of birds living their lives in a fairly food rich environment. On Hayling Island opposite, some rook scaring devices were set off sending a flock of several hundred geese honking and flying away in panic which created quite a spectacle. A little further on I was joined by a different flying noise as a couple of microlights buzzed around overhead. Along the coast were also some poignant reminders of army life, as I passed several benches that acted as memorials to soldiers that had died in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Eventually I came to Thornham church, one of the few buildings that remained from before the occupation by the armed forces. It was by now receiving restoration works funded by landfill tax money. After another mile or so I reached the perimeter fence once again, which pleased me no end as I prefer walks without the fear of being watched at all times. This time I merely had to state that I was leaving and the gate was buzzed open for me. On the opposite side I could see the Chidham Peninsula, which seemed a long way away but would be the next section of coastline that I would have to tackle. This wasn’t as big as Thornley Island, but would delay my progress eastward. As I headed around the coast I reached Thornham marina, once again full of expensive looking yachts. At this point although passing my halfway point for the day after six miles or so, I was less than one mile from the start. How I love coastal walking!
The stretch from Thornham Marina to Chidham beach was pretty boring if I’m honest, but just as my spirits were sagging I dropped down onto the beach from the sea wall. For a short stretch I walked along the shingle and the Itchenor Creek came into view, offering much more interesting views. I climbed up on to the sea wall again at Cobnor Point and headed up the side of Bosham Creek. The views across to Bosham Village were superb and by now the monotone grey skies which had stubbornly refuse to move earlier in the day were no giving way to the odd breaks of sunshine and giving fantastic lighting conditions for photography. I practised a few different shots of Bosham Church across the water using different camera settings and got some fairly decent results considering that I am a point and shoot type of photographer.
Eventually I reached Chidham Lane and conscious of the time I decided that I had had enough of sea wall walking and headed along the lane to meet the A259. It was lucky that I did for shortly after arriving at the bus stop the hourly 700 bus arrived and I had the short ride back to Emsworth without having to wait ages!