After a morning that began with brilliant sunshine and ended with thunder and rain, we were finally in sight of our goal – Moat Mount (above), the source of the Dollis stream. Our neighbourhood walking group had been following its course along the Dollis Valley Greenwalk over the summer. This was the last section, and we were keen to see where it emerged from the earth.
The morning’s ramble had started several miles further east, picking up the stream near Dollis Valley Way. We has been lucky spotting birds along the more southern section, but here the wildlife seemed to have gone into hiding, though someone heard a kingfisher. The stream itself at this point is not much bigger than a large ditch, and hidden by trees and undergrowth. However the views of the wide open spaces beside it more than made up for that.
I did spot a trickle of water in some mud but it was still some way from the trees that were to have been our final destination. And as the rain got heavier, we reluctantly decided to abandon the exploration of Moat Mount – once the site of a moated house and then a grand Victorian villa – and seek shelter in a nearby restaurant. So the source of the Dollis for us remains undiscovered - until another day.
PS: Should anyone be wondering where the name Dollis originated, there seem to be several possible explanations. Dollis is thought to be derived from the British dylif (a flood) or the Anglo-Saxon dwllice (erratic) while Dollis Hill may take its name from a former inhabitant called Dolley or Dawley.
For details of a previous Dollis stream walk, see
More about the Greenwalk at: