Spring 2022 Route Descriptions
We have developed 3 routes which are known as the Woodland route (5 miles), the Bluebell Route (10 miles), the River route (15 miles) and the Accessible Route (5 miles)
5 Mile Route
The original 5 mile route has been designed for those that are new to walking, or perhaps want to bring their children and/or dogs along for a nice day out in the surrounding countryside.
This has now been complemented with an Accessible route that avoids some obstructions that would prevent wheel chair use, but follows as much as possible the original 5 mile woodland route.
Starting in Elms Field, it quite quickly passes along footpaths, through into the countryside and woodland without crossing any major roads. There is a bridge over the railway line on the return leg which is avoided on the Accessible route.
On the way out you will pass the Henry Lucas Hospital, Wokingham’s only grade 1 listed building which was built in 1665 as an Alms House for the elderly of the area.
There will be a free “Nature Trail” included to keep the children occupied which involves looking for nature and wildlife along the route.
10 Mile Route
The 10 mile route was introduced as an interim distance challenge. Both the 10 and 15 miles routes start on the same paths as the Woodland route and then split off in the Gorrick Plantation, following Nine Mile Ride over the railway line and passing along Hollybush Ride where the 10 mile route then enters Simons Wood and the 15 mile route heads along a quiet lane and onto footpaths towards Finchampstead.
15 Mile Route
If you follow the longer route (15 Mile) after climbing to the ridge to Finchampstead spare a moment at St James Church. This beautiful 12th century church uniquely has the burials of two holders of the Victoria Cross Britain’s highest award for bravery: Alfred Stowell Jones VC – Delhi – Indian Mutiny and Sir John Watson VC Won at Lucknow – Indian Mutiny
This route will then drop down and follow the river Blackwater towards Ambarrow Car Park where it will rejoin the 10 mile route
The path takes you between Wellington College where numerous famous past pupils including James Hunt, Will Young, Rory Bremner and George Orwell were educated.
Next you will pass through East Berks Golf Course and then to Heath Lake, which consists of an area of woodland and heath land in the parish of Wokingham Without. The shallow 7 acre lake is the only acid lake in Berkshire.
This means it has a naturally high pH which supports several rare plants, including the water-milfoil and the 6 stemmed water crowfoot. Designated as a site of special scientific interest.
A bridleway at the other end of Heath lake then takes you back to the Gorrick Plantation for the last leg of the walk.
5 Mile Accessible Route
The Accessible Route has been added for those with mobility issues who can’t manage stiles, kissing gates and the footbridge over the railway line. It follows much of the existing 5 mile route, but involves going further down the Finchampstead Road to avoid the obstructions. The ground may be uneven in places and muddy if wet, but it should be manageable for those in wheelchairs.
You can view the maps on your phone’s browser by scanning the above QR codes and pressing the map icon – pressing the target icon will allow you to follow your progress.
If you have a preferred walking app that you use you can also download the route as a GPX file into your app.
Go to https://www.wokinghamwalk.co.uk/routes and select the download/print button for the route that you wish to download
In the Download section, select the type of download that you want i.e. Garmin, or Route You Android- app, Route You Apple-app etc. and follow the instructions.
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