Pete's Walks - Kensworth and Flamstead (page 1 of 3)

If you are considering walking this route yourself, please see my disclaimer. You may also like to see these notes about the maps.

Google map of the walk

I did this roughly 11 mile walk on Good Friday, 6th April 2012.  I had originally set out to repeat my Kensworth and Little Gaddesden walk, but after a couple of miles I had realised that I'd forgotten to fill my water bottles so I did a two-hour circular walk instead (Kensworth, Studham Common, Whipsnade), then filled my water bottles and immediately set off again on this second circular walk from my home.

It was just before noon as I set off down Common Road, Kensworth, and turned left into Hollicks Lane. After a few hundred yards a footpath starts on the left, following the other side of the hedgerow next to the lane. The path drops down steeply into a valley and up the other side (the lane here is marked '1 in 7 or steeper' on the OS map). At the top of the hill I reached a field corner where I rejoined the lane and followed it a short distance downhill to Church End, where it turns right.

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Near the start of Hollicks Lane

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The path beside Hollicks Lane

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Hollicks Lane, approaching Church End

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Church End

I continued along the lane through the hamlet of Church End, and continued straight on at a road junction. The lane was now following the bottom of a valley, heading towards Kensworth Lynch (another hamlet within the parish of Kensworth, situated around the foot of Lynch Hill and close to the Watling Street). It was quite a lengthy section along the lane, but there was hardly any traffic at all and was quite pleasant. I continued on through Kensworth Lynch, and at the end of the lane crossed Common Road at the foot of Lynch Hill and took the footpath heading southeast to Markyate.

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The lane from Church End to Kensworth Lynch

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The lane from Church End to Kensworth Lynch

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The lane entering Kensworth Lynch

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The start of the footpath going southeast from Kensworth Lynch to Markyate

The path ran parallel to the A5 or Watling Street, down in the valley of the river Ver to my left. I was soon following an intermittent hedgerow on my left. Where a path came in across the huge green field on my right (the path from Kensworth I usually use when going to Markyate), the combined paths went through a gap in the hedge and crossed a corner of another green field before continuing along another hedgerow on the left.  I stopped here for lunch on a new bench, with views over the Ver valley and the grand house of Markyate Cell - the bench was carved with the route of the 'River Ver Trail', for which I'd already seen signposts (looking at the web site, http://www.riverver.co.uk/,  this seems to have replaced the Ver-Colne Valley Walk, which I did almost three years ago).

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Looking back over Kensworth Lynch and the Watling Street, towards Caddington

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The start of the footpath going southeast from Kensworth Lynch to Markyate

I continued following the hedgerow, passing a couple of playing fields and then going down a short alley to reach a street in Markyate. I turned left for maybe a hundred yards, then turned right on a short path, continuing more or less straight on along some streets to go downhill to reach Buckwood Road. An alley led on past a large chapel on my left, and then after crossing a small street and going through a gate in some odd garden feature (I've never known exactly what this is) I turned left down Pickford Road. After a few yards a path started on the right, initially down a drive and then along a track leading slightly uphill between steep banks. At a path junction I forked left, following another hedgerow with a large field of green corn on my right. The path continued beyond the end of the hedge, soon with an intermittent hedge on my right - ahead I could see the 'Hertfordshire Spike' surmounting Flamstead Church.

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The start of the path to Flamstead from Markyate, just before I forked left

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The path from Markyate to Flamstead

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The path from Markyate to Flamstead

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The path from Markyate to Flamstead