Monday, 19 April 2010

Wychavon Way

It is spring which means time to start walking again. The weather over the Easter break has been ideal for walking and we managed to get in a nice one day walk in beautiful weather around the Daffodil Way starting the circular walk at Dymock in Gloucestershire. map pointer

Our main objective for the holiday was to walk the Wychavon Way which passes through neighbouring villages with the halfway point near home. We decided 4 days would allow for an unhurried walk of the ~42miles track.

As we were planning the walk a new route had just been agreed but it was not yet marked and no maps were available so we opted to follow the old route created to commemorate the Silver Jubilee in 1977. This route connects Holt Fleet to Winchcombe and we walked in this roughly Southeastern direction. map pointer

Day 1 took us to a point East of Droitwich just past the M5. I now understand one of reasons to reroute the walk, the section around Droitwich was not at all interesting and involved walking through an industrial estate and quite a distance along roads. The marking of the route was very poor, perhaps it has not been maintained because it will not be part of the new route. The second leg was more interesting with walking along streams, through woodland and with just a few lanes to cross before breaking again at Rous Lench just a couple of miles from home. The rest of the route was very scenic and included several hills that provided lovely panoramic views over the Vale of Evesham.

We left the Lenches and from Cracombe Hill we could see across the River Avon to our next high point - Bredon Hill. From here on the general route proved easy enough since it takes in all the high points, after Bredon Hill we head for Alderton Hill followed by Stanley Mount before descending into Winchcombe.

Last spring we walked the Worcestershire Way which is also maintained by Worcestershire County Council. It is quite clear that the Wychavon Way needs work, the new route looks like it should be a big improvement since it starts at Droitwich and misses the new industrial estates but I think this is not enough. The marking of the route is appalling in places and much of it is along bridleways which were very cut up by horses. The change of end point to Broadway makes some sense since it is within Wychavon District which is not the case for Winchcombe.