Starting from the quiet hamlet of Bag Enderby, this 2 miles walk explores the different aspects of the Wolds landscape, passing through Somersby, Tennyson's birthplace and home for the first twenty eight years of his life.
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.
(D/A) Leave the churchyard past the noticeboard and former rectory, Ferndale Manor, on your left. Follow the path alongside the thatched Ivy House Farm on your left, with the old dairy and quarry on your right.
(1) Follow the footpath through the fields to Somersby, passing over 4 sets of stiles. As you cross these fields and pastures, enjoy views of the rear of Somersby Grange and Somersby House.
(2) Continue on the footpath through the farmyard and onto the lane where you turn left. St Margaret's on your right is a 15th century church, with plenty of information on Alfred inside. Almost opposite the church is the castellated Somersby Grange and to its right, the cream coloured Somersby House, Tennyson's birthplace.
(3) Carry on down Bridge Road to the bridge over the brook. Turn around and view old redbrick Gamekeepers Cottage built next to the ancient Holywell Wood before you head on back up the hill, the way you came. Cross the stile on your left opposite Candleshoe Cottage, viewing Holywell Wood as you walk along to the farm cottages on Tetford Road. Holywell Wood is not accessible now but the Tennyson children played here.
(4) Emerge onto Tetford Road and turn right, passing Somersby House Farm and left at the grassed triangle in Somersby, continuing along the leafy lane to Bag Enderby. At Bag Enderby turn right by the Poet's Tree, passing various farm cottages before returning to the church.
D/A : mi 0 - alt. 190ft - Churchyard
1 : mi 0.28 - alt. 161ft - Somersby Grange
2 : mi 0.6 - alt. 180ft - St Margaret's Church
3 : mi 0.92 - alt. 151ft - Bridge Road
4 : mi 1.32 - alt. 190ft - Tetford Road
D/A : mi 2.09 - alt. 187ft - Churchyard
Maps: OS Explorer Map 273
Parking: Parking on the grass in front of Bag Enderby church.
Terrain: A mixture of footpaths, bridleways and quiet lanes - may be muddy in places.
Stiles: A few.
Refreshments & Toilets: White Hart Inn, Tetford (2.5 miles) with its Tennyson settle, or the George & Dragon and the two tearooms at Hagworthingham (3 miles).
The Lincolnshire Wolds is a nationally important and cherished landscape. Most of it was designated as an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) in 1973. Covering an area of 558 square kilometres or 216 square miles, the AONB contains the highest ground in eastern England between Yorkshire and Kent, rising to over 150m along its western edge. Rolling chalk hills and areas of sandstone and clay underlie this attractive landscape.
The Lincolnshire Wolds has been inhabited since prehistoric times and the appearance of the countryside today has been greatly influenced by past and present agricultural practices.
A Countryside Service helps to protect and enhance the landscape through partnership projects with local landowners, farmers, parish councils, businesses and residents of the Wolds.
Office Address :
Lincolnshire Wolds Countryside Service
Lincs LN11 0DA
Phone: 01522 555780 Twitter: @LincsWoldsAONB
Visorando and this author cannot be held responsible in the case of accidents or problems occuring on this walk.
Bag Enderby - St Margaret's Church has nailed to its door a Danish shield boss found long ago in a nearby field. The church contains medieval glass, a rood screen and an ancient font, with depictions of Danish mythology carved upon it. George Clayton Tennyson, Alfred's father was rector of Bag Enderby and Somersby. Near the 18th century thatched Ivy House Farm stands the former dairy barns and the quarry, which supplied the stone for the church.
The hollow tree stump at the top of the village is known as 'The Poets Tree'; the Tennyson children allegedly played on its long, low branch.
Somersby - Somersby House, the cream-coloured building in the centre of the hamlet was home to the Tennyson family from 1808 to 1837. Alfred was born here on August 6th, 1809, and spent his childhood exploring the countryside with his 10 siblings. It is now a private home and only opens to the public on special occasions. The castellated Grange next door was home to the landowners of the time. During restoration work carried out in 2015, a graffito was uncovered in the belfry of St Margaret's. Carved into the stone, it simply says 'AT 1837, the year the Tennysons left.
The bridge over the brook, the River Lymn, was built in 1827, the year Alfred started at Cambridge. The river runs through the meadow beyond Somersby House Garden before flowing through Bag Enderby to Wainfleet and out to sea at Gibraltar Point. It is widely believed that the poem, The Brook was inspired by the River Lymn, the river that ran through Tennyson's childhood......
''I chatter, chatter, as I flow
To join the brimming river,
For men may come and men may go,
But I go on forever.''
No more evidence is needed that the wolds landscape inspired the young Poet Laureate than the opening verse of The Lady of Shallott (1832).
''On either side the river lie
Long fields of barley and of rye,
That clothe the wold and meet the sky;
And thro' the field the road runs by
To many-tower'd Camelot;''
Starting from the quiet hamlet of Bag Enderby, this 5.5 miles walk explores the different aspects of the Wolds landscape, passing through Somersby, Tennyson's birthplace and home for the first twenty eight years of his life.
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