and occasionally rides a bike.
A word of warning. The walk descriptions are not detailed enough to guide you - please take a map. The batteries never run out, and you always have a signal. Oh, And don't take left or right as gospel!

Monday, August 19, 2019

Manton, Egleton, Brooke, Martinsthorpe.

Thursday 15 August

A shorter walk today, about 7.5 miles. With Eddie, Harry and Maureen.  This walk from 2014, but in reverse.

We set off from the Horse and Jockey in Manton and walked round the lakeside cycle route.
part of Rutland Water

Men at work on the railway line
We had a short pause to look at the ospreys' nest - from a distance.
We carried on as far as the Nature reserve at Egleton.
The season moves on

 At Egleton we turned left and headed to the A6003. 

We crossed this and the railway line, and made our way up the hill, with views of Oakham on our left.

 At the top of the hill we followed the footpath heading towards Brooke. On the way a farmer was chopping up a fallen giant, a large oak tree destroyed by recent strong winds. 

Another fairy ring
  We passed Brooke Covert East, and turned slightly left to go downhill towards the village, joining the track which becomes the access road to the recently renovated Hillside Cottage. From certain places the Dovecote near Brooke Priory can be clearly seen.
The Dovecote

We enter the village close to Bridge Farm, and follow the road directly ahead to reach the church. 

Tomb if Charles Noel
The door was open today, and we bought a couple of jars of rather good gooseberry and elderflower jam, before having a coffee break in the church porch.

We left the village by the road to Ridlington (not the Braunston Road). It climbs up to a crossroads, where we turned right towards America Lodge. 

The road becomes a track and then a path, keeping to the top of the ridge with views of the reservoir, 

all the way to the site of the deserted village of Martinsthorpe. 

The house is being rebuilt  on the site of Old Hall Farm. 

We walked to the right of it, then on to the A6003, just opposite the road along to Normanton.

A short walk back to car, followed by lunch at the pub.

The route. First mile was round the reservoir path.

Southey Wood, Ufford, Castor Hanglands, Upton

Monday 12 August 

8 and 3/4 miles, with Eddie and Norma. Flat, although with a high point! Fine weather.

We parked near Southey Wood, where the car park is now closed.

 We followed the main footpath north and then west, eventually turning right, north along the bridleway known as "the drift". At Marholm Road we turned left ,  swinging right through Ufford.  
St Andrew's church was the "highest point", on Church Hill, at 44.16 meters (almost 145 feet!) above sea level.

It was the site for a beacon to warn of the invasion of the Spanish Armada. 
We walked past the large houses in Ufford, and took a footpath to the right which follows the edge of fields.  Be sure to take the path to the left of the hedge when this is possible, as the hedge becomes impassable further on.

The path came out at the side of Jubilee Wood (planted for Victoria's jubilee) on to High Field Road.

We turned right here and followed the road to the T-junction. We turned left along the only slightly busy stretch of road - we collected a small bag full of cans along the verge here.
At the cross roads we carried straight on the to Granary tea shop, attached to Willow Brook Farm shop,  where we had a well-deserved coffee break .

Scones for some ... cherry pie for Eddie...
We followed their permissive path into Castor Hanglands Nature Reserve. No horses today, but there were some cows and sheep.

We kept going south through the wood, and came out to open farmland. We continued straight ahead until a path crossed ours, then we turned right.  Instead of turning right and across fields to Manor Farm we continued west beside trees until the path turned sharp right.  At a left turn, which we didn't take there is a tree stump obligingly carved into an excellent seat. 
From here we walked past Manor Farm, and the field with the pillar - we still haven't found out where it comes from. 

We looked at St John the Baptist Church, Upton - set a little way away from the small village itself.we decided it was a bit too far to walk for the key. The church was built as a Chapel-of-Ease in the Parish of Castor in AD 1120. Major restoration work was carried out in 2005 and 2006. Repairs were made to the bell-turret, the roof and the windows, with support from English Heritage.

We peered through the windows - there is a large tomb with carved figures.

From here we returned to the track which took us over the cattle grid and headed north towards Southey Woods car park. 
On the way we passed this 'observation tower', and very soon arrived at the road and the car.

Sunday, August 18, 2019

Ketton circular, almost to Empingham.

Thursday 08 August

With Eddie, harry and Maureen. Almost 9 miles. We set off from the lay-by with a phone box on the road coming in from Luffenham. We walked along the A6121 through the village, where there are several interesting buildings.  
This was the house of on George Hibbins, one of a family of stone and memorial masons.  The house has several carved decorations.

and a statue.

Monument for Victoria's golden jubilee in 1887

I suffer from agapanthus envy
We walked through Ketton as far as Pit Lane, past the industrial area and the cement works 

as far as the edge of the disused quarry Nature reserve,
where the path goes off to the left, at a righthand bend in the road.  

through the woodland
to some open land covered in weeds, and several butterflies
and on to the Macmillan Way/Hereward Way footpath.

This goes through the quarry on a separated path, with a bridge over the roadway. 
Watched the dinky toy like  trucks...

Onward past some blackberry bushes, then we came to a stile through a  hedge*, where another path crossed ours. We continued straight ahead, through cornfields and past Woodside Farm, until we reached a road.
At this point we joined the route of last Monday's walk. 
We came out on the roadside verge, then through a gate on the other side of the hedge ( a right angled turn to our  right) Gently downhill  through two fields  across the A606, close to a lay-by, and a fair way downhill towards Empingham. 

When we met a path crossing our route we turned right, through a meadow, up a short slope to a double  stile, and through a cornfield. This path continues past Shacklewell Lodge and Shacklewell Cottage before joining the A606. 

There's a quarter of a mile or so alongside this busy road - it has a decent verge to walk on. After a short uphill drag we turned very sharply right, to cross a field and meet a path between hedges.
Turn right again, and follow the grassy bridleway round a 90 degree turn and then along until you reach the stile (* above).  
At this point we turned left and followed the route we had taken earlier today. We ignored the path to our left and continued past Home Farm and into Ketton. A right turn and a short walk past the library, school and Jubilee monument took us back to the car.