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!

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Bradgate Park - Beacon Hill - Ulverscroft Priory - Newtown Linford

Walked on Monday 10 September 2012, with Barry, Gordon and Maureen.  Mostly fine.

We parked at the Newtown Linford car park, and took the low level path along the main drive by the river Lin, towards the ruins of Bradgate House, childhood home of Jane Grey, the nine-day queen.  The park has been a deer park from way back when, and there are still plenty of deer in this area.

There's a lovely stretch of river.

and some impressive trees.

Remains of Bradgate House and a moody sky
Uphill to the obelisk

Just before reaching the ruins of the house, we took the path uphill to the left to reach the War Memorial, where there was a keen cold wind.  We didn't hang around, but followed the path through the spinney to Old John.
18th century folly and great viewpoint
Who said down hill was easier?
We headed to the Hunts Hill car park on the north west side of the park.  The way ahead was over the crossroads to Benscliffe Road, and after a couple of hundred yards we turned right into Rough Hill Wood - the path went up slightly then downhill to a golf course. Part way through the golf course we crossed Joe Moore's Lane.  The golf course was busier on a Monday than it had been on a Sunday, but no problems and the way is easy to follow.
After leaving the golf course the path crosses a couple of fields to emerge on a track, then goes past some stables and a large garage, then swings left and comes out on Maplewell Road.  Here we turned right and followed the road towards Woodhouse Eaves.  We didn't take the first footpath signed to the left, but turned left at Mill Road. This turns into a track and climbs fairly steeply towards Windmill Hill.
Up towards Windmill Hill

Looking over to Broombriggs

The windmill with viewing platform - the stairs are under repair at present
We chose not to go up to the windmill on this occasion - I'll put it in the good intentions file.  When the mill was operational there were no trees surrounding it.

We came out at the car park for Broombriggs Country Park, cheaper but more remote than Bradgate.  We crossed Beacon Road, turned left along the cycle track, then right on to a path for walkers.  After about 100 yards we turned left again on the main path.  Dappled shade makes this a lovely walk, in spite of some traffic noise from the road.  
A great opportunity for posers?
We turned off the main path along the grassy track which leads to the summit, via the toposcope, which claims views as far as Boston Stump over 50 miles away. Not today - though there was a group of trees in the way.  

Great views all round, even so.
Like the earrings

The obelisk and Old John from Beacon Hill.
From here we followed the route down past the car park, turning right past the toilet block and down the path parallel to the road. 

At the charcoal burner we took the small path to the left which came out at the crossroads. We crossed over to the Copt Oak road - there is a verge, but not quite wide enough for comfortable walking. Luckily this is a short section and we turned left along a footpath on the drive to Black Hill Farm. After the trees stop the footpath heads off to the right along a hedge.  You're not likely to make a mistake here, as there is a warning notice on the drive.

The path is clearly marked, and takes you along field edges to Ulverscroft Lodge Farm.  Here we turned left to go round the house and meet the drive which took us to the ruined 11th century Ulverscroft Priory.   The cottage nearby is inhabited, and there has been scaffolding up on some of the ruins for years. 
Pond near the priory

Ruins of Ulverscroft Priory
The drive comes out on Priory Lane, and we crossed over to Ulverscroft Lane.  I'm hoping the resurfacing they've just done doesn't encourage a lot of traffic - it's pleasant and quiet at the moment. 

Just under a mile along the lane we turned right to take a footpath which leads through fields.  When the path opens out in a field you fork left after crossing a stile.  After this the path is clear and goes through woodland. This was a bit muddy.   There is no problem until you pass a ruined building on the left (Ulverscroft Mill). Here  you meet another path, and turn left and shortly afterwards right to cross a footbridge.  The path leads into Newtown Linford coming out near some thatched cottages.

We turned right along the main street, full of interesting very well-kept houses.   It's probably just over half a mile back to Bradgate Park, and nearby there's a selection of tea-shops.

Map and details

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