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!

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Four spires - Broughton, Great Cransley, Loddington, Thorpe Malsor

Thu, 2014 Nov 6 8:58 AM GMT
With Gordon. The first frost of the winter soon melted and conditions were v good for walking. Little sun, but dry with a chilly breeze. Around 9 miles. Elevation details ok. Not sure how the max speed is less than average moving speed!
We have walked this way before, in the opposite direction in September 2012 and in August 2012. Time to revisit.

Start from Church Street, walking west past the church (Spire 1), and then along Gate Lane as far as High Street. *Cross over into Cox's Lane, and very soon take the narrow footway on the right,  just by the decorative gate made from garden tools. The path crosses Crane Close and comes to a grassy field which you cross to reach the A43. This has to be crossed. The path is directly opposite and takes you diagonally to your left to reach a gate and steps down to Broughton Hill which goes up into Great Cransley.
**This can be avoided by walking along Cox's Lane and turning right at the end on to Broughton Hill/Cransley Hill. This road goes under the A 43.**

A garden tool gate
 At the top of the hill, just before the Three Cranes pub, turn left along Church Lane, past Cransley Hall and several houses.
Skulking in the shade, two lions guard Cransley Hall

On the sunny side, there are two miniature Chinese-style lions
 The church (Spire 2) is off to the left, through a blue gate and downhill - easy to miss if you're not looking for it.
Church Lane is surfaced, and marked not a through road to Mawsley. Turn right at a bridleway sign on a left hand bend. Go through Cransley Wood. The footpath is clear. At the end of the wood, turn left along the edge, the  right along a field boundary to reach a dismantled railway line. Turn left along this and follow it for a while. You come out just before Mawsley Lodge Farm - an uninhabited building.

Mawsley Lodge Farm buildings
The path goes round this, always well marked. You should have the farm on your right hand side as you turn west, then after a couple of fields turn right when you  meet a cross path. You are now walking northeast.  The grass track becomes surfaced and you go through two or three gates.
Follow the track as it bends to the left and goes past a few rather secluded houses. Ignore the junction to the left and continue along the road, now called Mawsley Lane. It goes downhill, crosses a stream and then climbs up into Loddington, past the playground and cricket pitch.
Turn right at the crossroads along Harrington Road. The church (Spire 3)  is visible to the left. the next mile or so is along Harrington Road with its overgrown pavement for pedestrians, until the right hand turn into Thorpe Malsor.
The porch at the back of Thorpe Malsor church
 Go as far as the church (Spire 4) and green, and take the footpath to the right just before the churchyard.
Ivy-shrouded churchyard

Thorpe Malsor Church
 This bridleway gets quite muddy through the trees, then come out into a field. At the end of the first field turn left at the hedge and follow the path downhill to Cransley reservoir, which comes into view.
Cransley Reservoir
 Turn left at the water's edge, then right to walk along the dam. Turn right in front of the sailing club building, and follow the path as it goes through a gate then turns left uphill along the field edge to Northfield Road.
We leave it behind and climb to the road
 Turn right and follow the road past White Lodge Farm. Just before Great Cranlsey there is a path across a field on the left, which cuts off the corner and brings you out into the village. Turn left and walk past the Three Cranes, down Broughton Hill, up towards Broughton and under the A43.

Continue into the village and turn left at the Red Lion into Church Street.
As we went past the blacksmith's shop we could hear the clang of hammer on metal - I wonder if they made the gate in the first photo?

Map and details


Ida Jones said...

You've been busy this week! It was interesting to see the variety of the places you passed.

aliqot said...

I did very little on Tuesday and felt I had to get outside! Seize the day and all that.