Walk 1604 - printer friendly version
Long Marston from Cheddington circular Walk
Author - Allan Friswell
Length - 6.5 miles / 10.6 km
Ascent - 250 feet / 76 metres
Grade - easy/mod
Start - OS grid reference SP919176
Lat 51.849441 + Long -0.66722324
Postcode LU7 0SN (approx. location only)
This is a long village! Cheddington will forever be associated with the Great Train Robbery although this claim to fame rests solely on a proximity to where the crime took place in 1962. The hillsides here show traces of lynchets, ridges or ledges formed along the downhill side of a plot by ploughing in ancient times. Murray's 1947 Buckinghamshire Guide says of Cheddington "Has a flavour of Beds. and Herts. Church old and dull". You must judge for yourself. The village was and remains the only village on the main Euston to Glagow line; the station was reputedly built to allow for the easy transportation of Lord Roseberry's racehorses. Three Horseshoes is a smashing little pub with log fires in winter. Adnams and Greene King IPA are on offer.
How to get there: Cheddington is best approached from either the A5 just before Dunstable coming from Milton Keynes: or from Leighton Buzzard. In any case it's the A505 you need to follow. Take the turning to Ivinghoe and after a couple of miles take the right hand turn to the village. Go left at the roundabout and the pub is on the right after 200 yards. OS Explorer 181, Pathfinder 1094, map reference SP 919176. The pub has a large car park. However check with the landlord prior to parking. Alternative parking on the road is available nearby.
The walk includes a few easy hills, and a certain amount of on-road walking, but is an agreeable ramble. Waymarking is average.
The Walk : Turn right from the pub, walk along through the village past the Post Office and turn right up the path. Cross the lane, over the stile and follow the right hand edge of the field uphill, with a couple of dogleg turns. To the left you can see the white scar of Pitstone Quarry and the Chiltern Hills. The path goes down between Southend Hill and Westend Hill on your left and right respectively. At the foot of the hill take the usually overgrown stile, pass through the trees, cross the bridge and follow the path right, skirting the lorry park and industrial estate. Follow the path to the main road, taking great care not to put your foot into one of the numerous gullies that cross it.
At the road, turn left and walk along it for about one mile into Long Marston, passing the cricket ground. At the Queen's Head pub turn right, walk to the Boot pub and take the path running behind it. Go over three stiles. Cross the next two fields at half left and at the stile, where two paths are marked, turn right and follow the field edge. Where the path doglegs right, you turn left and cross the field in the direction of the radio mast, making for a bridge between two large bushes. After this you keep ahead to the left hand edge of the spinney. Cross a very sturdy bridge, and follow the field's edge to the radio mast. Take the path on the left of the mast, keeping left through the next small and then larger fields.
At the next field walk across directly in line with the farmhouse, cross a stile and maintain your line over the meadow. Cross the stile, turn right past Alnwick and follow the track passing a plantation of about 40 young apple trees, and go through the gateway into Broadmead Farm. Here you pass the footpath post into the garden, turn right over the "stile" and keep ahead through the garden to the stile at the far end. Turn right, follow the edge of the field along the defined track. It doglegs left and right various times, but just follow it to the trees called the Belt. Keep these on your left and walk ahead for 500 metres past the golf club to the main Mentmore - Cheddington road. You will get a brief glimpse of Mentmore Towers on the left. At the road, turn right and follow the bridle way back almost as far as Cheddington. The last 200 yards you will have to walk on the road. At the crossroads, cross and walk uphill to the Three Horseshoes