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!

Wednesday, August 11, 2021

Gumley, Saddington, Smeeton Westerby, Foxton Locks

 Thursday 05 August, with Eddie. 7.5 miles, 450 feet of up and downery.

Met Eddie at 9.30 at Gumley. We walked uphill through the village, past their free library phone booth with its window box,

then past St. Helens church,

keeping Gumley Wood on our right, to cross a minor road. Through this unusual stile

and on through the fields following the Leicestershire Round to the high point with a memorial seat with a fine view.

It was downhill briefly, past Saddington Reservoir,

and up the steepish slope to Saddington village. We continued on the LR past Loafabout Cottage, with its inviting seat. 
Then our route took us through a flowery ginnel, jitty or snicket.

We left the LR at this point, turning right by a farm with lots of old vehicles, claiming to do property repairs… The footpath took us through a field where the two sheep seemed like hand-reared pets.

Their reaction to humans was “Let’s see if they have something for us.”  
For a few hundred yards we walked on the Smeeton Road, crossing the canal bridge, then taking a footpath to our left, climbing gradually to a track marked as Mill Lane and into Smeeton Westerby (once two separate villages). 
We turned right down Debdale Lane, a surfaced track, which leads past Bridge 67 Farm and also promises a cafe (Carma’s Cafe - a pop-up mobile one, not open until Saturday) This track goes to the Grand Union Canal, slightly north of Debdale Wharf. 

We turned right and followed the towpath to Foxton Locks - coffee or beer and a cake.  

Then we just had to walk to our right over the bridge above the bottom lock and follow the footpath to Foxton Road, where we turned right and did a final climb back to Gumley. 

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