Walk 142: Ringstead & Denford Circular Walk

The ‘Needs to Know’

Distance: Almost 5 miles (8.05km). It is possible to extend the walk by continuing into Stanwick Lakes

Time to walk: A leisurely couple of hours

Difficulty: Flat walking on a mixture of good tracks

Parking: On street near Carlow Road in Ringstead

Public toilets: Pubs & the Tea Room in Woodford

Map of the route: 

This walk has been put together by Viv Wilkinson & takes in one of my favourite places, Kinewell Lake plus the wonderful Watermill Tea Room in Woodford. However it adds on an additional 1.5 mile distance to the Kinewell walk by visiting Denford, together with some wonderful riverside walking – thanks Viv!

Right…shall we go & have a look?

Let’s Walk!

1. Viv’s walk begins in Carlow Road in the lovely village of Ringstead, which lies about 15 miles north-east of Northampton…

Now…did you know that one of Ringstead’s most famous associates was a certain William Tuttle, who was born here & who settled in Charlestown, Massachusetts in 1636. His descendants number in the tens of thousands today. Notable among them are: Ernest HemingwayBob NewhartSinclair LewisHumphrey BogartWinston ChurchillGerald FordLester B. PearsonJonathan EdwardsO. HenryMargaret WarnerDrew Gilpin FaustNorman Rockwell & Annette Bening

It was also the birthplace of Alfred Roberts, the father of Margaret Thatcher

2. Across to the right’s the High Street…

Continue down Carlow Road…

3. Turn right into Back Lane…

4. Look out for a footpath on the left about 300 yards down Back Lane…

5. The footpath continues straight across up the side of the fence (the poo bin is no longer there)…

…& eventually passes some allotments on the right, before opening out into fields

6. Head for the gap in the bushes below…

& then you’ll see the footpath going diagonally right…

…which reaches a track & a gate into a road. This is Denford

7. This is a busy road on a bend. Cross over to the grassy area & keep to the right hand side…

The footpath on the left eventually runs out, so best stay on the right here

8. Carry on past Manor House Farm Cottage…

…& keep straight ahead onto Front Street

9. At the bottom of Front Street walk down Childs Street, which leads to the main road through Denford…

10. Leaving Childs Street, if you look back you’ll see The Cock Inn …

Cross over the road, heading slightly right to a lane…

11. Walk down Meadow Lane…

The ladies below were happy with being snapped, but struggling with the gate – we were happy to help!

12. This is the first of three bridges to cross. Sometimes there’s cows in this field, but today we were lucky…

The second is straight ahead…

13. This is a really lovely stretch of the River Nene…

The third bridge is below where we turn off

14. Take care to pick the correct path through the gate on your left (in the pictures below)…

15. The river’s now on your left…

Follow the path straight ahead for about one mile

There’s some interesting old buildings & barns on the other side…

16. Pass through the gate in the picture below…the river is still on your left…

There was a heron fishing along this stretch

17. Go over the stile on your left…

18. Pick up the path again running past the river…

19. Keeping the river to your left, you’ll eventually reach the old railway line into Stanwick Lakes

20. Take a left onto the old railway line over the river…

On the bridge there’s a nice view to the right of the weir

There were some nesting swans along here too…

21. This is quite a busy footpath with walkers, horse riders & cyclists. You stay on this for at least a mile

22. Eventually you reach a second bridge…

I love the view from here & can imagine Victorian ladies in their refinery picnicking on the banks of the river here

23. Look out for this ruin on the right as we leave at the crossroads just after this…

Take a left at the crossroads…

If the Woodford Mill is open you’ll see their board on the left. Sadly it was closed as they don’t open on Mondays

24. Head up the slight hill… 

…& pass through the kissing gate across a private road down to the car park

25. Turn left & you’ll see Woodford Mill – our favourite coffee stop. They also do a fab eggs benedict here…

It’s dog friendly & has a lovely garden around the back to the left of the building, or you can go through the front door

26. Continue past the Mill & cross the bridge…

Look back at the view of the Mill from the bridge 

27. After crossing the bridge, pass through the gate on the left…

You’re now following the river on your left

28. This is the marina to your left…

Continue to follow the track as it passes over the boardwalk

29. Follow the footpath round…

Look over to the left to see the church in Ringstead

30. The footpath forks & you need to take the left route, slightly downhill between two fields…

Look for the sign pointing you through the gate below

31. Walk down the track, between the houses…

32. Turn right into Meadow Close…

Follow the close round & you’ll see the church spire again

33. Turn left into Carlow Road…

…& back to where you started

So that’s a lovely stroll, taking in a great Tea Room plus a wonderful stretch of the River Nene. Thank you Viv!

Go Walk!