A walk in the heart of the Cotswolds, its countryside, its hills and its woods from the ruins of Hailes Abbey, taken over from the National Trust. This circuit takes part of the Cotswolds Way, an SGR hiking trail that crosses the Cotswolds from North to South for 164 km (from Chipping Campden to Bath).
Calculated time is computed with the distance, the height difference, and an average speed of 2.2 mph. For an intermediate walker, this time includes small breaks.
Free parking with a few spaces near Hailes Abbey and Hailes Church.
(D/A) Head north-west and then right due north at the first crossroads towards the Hailes Abbey Halt (GWSR) ‘train station'.
(1) At the first clear bend in the road to the left, pass through the gate and take the dirt road to the right.
A little further on, avoid the right fork and follow the main path to the left.
(2) Cross the pasture diagonally or right/left, going towards a metal gate at the north end. Arrive at the hamlet of Didbrook.
(3) Follow the small road to the right, including at the crossroads with a red telephone box converted into a defibrillator shelter.
(4) Take the small dead-end road to the right towards Wood Stanway where you have to follow the Cotswolds Way to the Southeast.
At the end of the road, turn right and go straight up to the pastures along the farm stables on the left. At the end of the path, cross the metal gate, turn left, pass the gate and climb the hill to a group of houses.
Go around it to the right and reach the ridge to the left of a row of majestic beech trees. Continue straight ahead and reach the road at Stumps Cross.
(5) Turn onto the first path on the right and continue to the next crossroads.
(6) Turn right, cross a gate on the left and continue the track in the field along the dry stone wall.
(7) At the end of the field, turn left, admiring the view over the valley below until you reach a stone monument. Go down the slope and follow the track to the left until the edge of a forest (Hailes Wood).
(8) Pass the portico and turn right onto the forest path which descends into a magnificent undergrowth to return to the starting point (D/A).
D/A : mi 0 - alt. 338ft
1 : mi 0.27 - alt. 312ft - Metal gate
2 : mi 0.78 - alt. 315ft - Separation of portico-gate paths
3 : mi 0.92 - alt. 299ft - Way into Didbrook
4 : mi 1.4 - alt. 348ft - Crossroads
5 : mi 2.67 - alt. 827ft - Stumps Cross crossroads
6 : mi 3.2 - alt. 912ft - Crossroads of country lanes
7 : mi 3.41 - alt. 873ft - Angle of the pastures
8 : mi 4.09 - alt. 673ft - Forest path
D/A : mi 4.84 - alt. 338ft
Wear proper shoes because the region is often subject to severe weather ... and the paths and trails may be flooded or muddy in places.
There are no picnic tables, water points or shops on the route.
Opportunity to eat at Hailes Fruit Farm.
Make sure to close the gates, porticos or other passages separating or isolating the fields. Keep dogs on a leash when crossing fields when there are flocks of sheep.
Visorando and this author cannot be held responsible in the case of accidents or problems occuring on this walk.
Splendid oaks and beeches on the first part of the route.
Beautiful views of the surroundings from the heights, at the halfway point.
Magnificent properties and charming local stone hamlets.
Hailes Abbey: ruins of a Cistercian abbey open to visitors from April to September.
Didbrook Church and its old cemetery.
Hailes Fruit Farm: fruit for seasonal picking, camping, tea-room and restaurant.
Cotswolds Way: this walk follows the Way between Wood Stanway and Hailes Abbey. The northern part leads to Chipping Campden. The southern part joins Bath at the other end.
GWSR: Gloucestershire - Worcestershire Steam Railway, tourist steam train operating in season.
Global average : 4/5
Number of opinions : 1
Description quality : 3/5
Routemap quality : 4/5
Walk interest : 5/5
Global average : 4 / 5
Date of walk
Description quality : Average
Routemap quality : Good
Walk interest : Very good
This was a lovely walk but we noticed a few things which make the directions easier.
4. The small dead end road is the second road sign posted for Wood Stanway. You then reach a junction and have to go left to reach the end of the road to go up to the pastures. The farm stables are on the right not left.
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